ERC warning signs; IRS online resources; report abusive tax promotions, fraud; Saturday TAC hours; and more

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e-News for Tax ProfessionalsFebruary 16, 2024

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Issue Number:  2024-07

Inside This Issue

  1. IRS shares warning signs indicating when ERC claims may be incorrect
  2. Upcoming holiday period marks peak time for IRS phone lines; use IRS online resources for help
  3. Tax pros: Report abusive tax promotions and tax fraud
  4. Special Saturday hours available at more than 50 Taxpayer Assistance Centers across the country
  5. IRS releases Form 1099-K e-poster
  6. IRS updates Premium Tax Credit frequently asked questions
  7. Tax relief available for disaster victims in Michigan
  8. IRS Chief Criminal Investigation announces retirement
  9. Upcoming webinars for tax practitioners
  10. News from the Justice Department’s Tax Division
  11. Technical Guidance

1.  IRS shares warning signs indicating when ERC claims may be incorrect


With a key March deadline quickly approaching, the IRS highlighted special warning signs that an Employee Retention Credit (ERC) claim may be questionable to help small businesses that may need to resolve incorrect claims. The indicators, built on feedback from the tax professional community and IRS compliance personnel, center on misinformation some unscrupulous ERC promoters used. The notification comes as the March 22 deadline nears for the ERC Voluntary Disclosure Program for anyone who mistakenly submitted a claim and was compensated.

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2.  Upcoming holiday period marks peak time for IRS phone lines; use IRS online resources for help


Presidents Day weekend historically marks a peak period for IRS phone lines. Encourage your clients to use online self-help tools and resources available on IRS.gov to get quick answers and avoid phone delays during the anticipated peak demand for IRS phone lines around the federal holiday. New this year, people can easily find step-by-step help to file their personal federal income tax return. The IRS also has a variety of information available on IRS.gov to help taxpayers, including a special free help page.

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3.  Tax pros: Report abusive tax promotions and tax fraud


File Form 14242, Report Suspected Abusive Tax Promotions or Preparers, with the IRS Lead Development Center to help stop unscrupulous promoters and tax preparers. You can learn how to report other types of tax scams on the tax scams webpage on IRS.gov, including:

Taxpayers and tax practitioners may also send the information to the IRS Whistleblower Office to claim an award.

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4.  Special Saturday hours available at more than 50 Taxpayer Assistance Centers across the country


In an effort to provide more resources for taxpayers during this filing season, the IRS has announced special Saturday hours at specific Taxpayer Assistance Centers (TACs) for the next four months. The special Saturday hours of operation will take place from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., on Feb. 24, March 16, April 13 and May 18 at participating TAC locations. Normally, TACs are only open Monday through Friday, with appointments needed. However, during these Saturday hours, appointments are not required. IRS advises taxpayers to visit the special Saturday hours webpage on IRS.gov for a list of participating TAC locations.

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5.  IRS releases Form 1099-K e-poster


It’s important for your clients to know that if they’re receiving payments running a small business or by selling items online, they could receive a Form 1099-K, typically by the end of January the following year. To help you and taxpayers, the IRS has developed a Form 1099-K e-poster, highlighting what’s taxable, the benefits of keeping good expense records and more.

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6.  IRS updates Premium Tax Credit frequently asked questions


The IRS revised its frequently asked questions (FAQs) for the Premium Tax Credit. These FAQs include various updates, additional sections and will replace FAQs previously posted in FS 2022-13 on Feb. 24, 2022.

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7.  Tax relief available for disaster victims in Michigan


Individuals and businesses in parts of Michigan affected by severe storms, tornadoes and flooding that began on Aug. 24, 2023, now have until June 17, 2024, to file various federal individual and business tax returns and make tax payments. The IRS is offering relief to any area designated by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), which currently includes Eaton, Ingham, Ionia, Kent, Livingston, Macomb, Monroe, Oakland and Wayne counties. The same relief will be available to any other Michigan localities added later to the disaster area. The current list of eligible localities is always available on the disaster relief page on IRS.gov.

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8.  IRS Chief Criminal Investigation announces retirement


IRS Criminal Investigation Chief Jim Lee will retire from federal service on April 6. Lee has led the IRS-CI since 2020, overseeing a staff of more than 3,200 CI employees, including 2,200 special agents who have investigated thousands of financial crimes involving tax violations, money laundering, public corruption, cybercrime, identity theft, narcotics trafficking, human trafficking and terrorism financing. “I have been fortunate to be surrounded by talented men and women across every discipline of the organization as we have unraveled some of the most complex financial crimes this world has ever seen. I will miss the job, my colleagues and the challenges we faced together,” said Chief Lee.

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9.  Upcoming webinars for tax practitioners


The IRS offers the upcoming live webinars to the tax practitioner community. For more information or to register for the webinars, visit the Webinars for Tax Practitioners webpage:

  • Taxable transactions with digital assets on Feb. 22 at 2 p.m. ET. Earn up to 1 CE credit (Federal Tax). Certificates of completion are being offered.
  • IRS and FTC present scams, tax related identity theft, and identity protection PIN for National Consumer Protection Week on March 6 at 1 p.m. ET. CE credit will not be offered for this webinar.

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10.  News from the Justice Department’s Tax Division


The Justice Department filed a complaint seeking to bar Ohio tax return preparer Emmanuel Antwi from owning or operating a tax return preparation business and preparing tax returns for others. By repeatedly understating his customers’ tax liabilities, the complaint alleges that the United States has been harmed by Antwi’s conduct resulting in the significant loss in tax revenue of an estimated $1.1 million in 2020 alone.

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11.  Technical Guidance


Notice 2024-24 sets forth updates on the corporate bond monthly yield curve, the corresponding spot segment rates for January 2024 used under section 417(e)(3)(D), the 24-month average segment rates applicable for February 2024, and the 30-year Treasury rates, as reflected by the application of section 430(h)(2)(C)(iv).

Revenue Procedure 2024-14 provides indexing adjustments for the applicable dollar amounts under section 4980H(c)(1) and (b)(1) of the Internal Revenue Code.

Revenue Ruling 2024-04 provides various prescribed rates for federal income tax purposes including the applicable federal interest rates, the adjusted applicable federal interest rates, the adjusted federal long-term rate, and the adjusted federal long-term tax-exempt rate. These rates are determined as prescribed by section 1274.

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