Oct 14, 2019

Tax Resources for CPAs: PICPA’s Got ‘Em

By Maureen Renzi, vice president – communications

The 2018 tax filing season is officially at an end since the Oct. 15 extension deadline has arrived. CPAs I’ve talked to resoundingly agree that this year was particularly challenging. Filing tax extensions not only provided some extra time to prepare returns, but also provided more opportunity to get clarifications on the more sticky issues resulting from the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017.

A quick poll of members of PICPA’s Federal Taxation Committee along with contributors to the PICPA Connect taxation discussion board revealed numerous areas where additional guidance was needed.

Rank of some of the sticky issues related to the 2018 tax year.

The PICPA asked: Extensions this tax season provided more time to clarify sticky issues related to the 2018 tax year. Of the followig, which have been the most relevant issues that occurred after April 15, 2019. (Top three are noted in greeen.)

The No. 1 issue that needed additional guidance was the 20% deduction for pass-through entities. Nearly 75% of respondents indicated this guidance was most relevant to their clients. PICPA and IRS resources on this issue include the following:

Another area where extension-takers required additional guidance was on Qualified Opportunity Zones. The PICPA produced the podcast “How CPAs Can Advise on Qualified Opportunity Zones” featuring CPAs Chris Catarino and Steven Rossman, to shed some light on the issue.

The implications of the TCJA on states continue to evolve, and the PICPA provided some early guidance in our Tax Reform Guide presented by the Pennsylvania CPA Journal. CPAs Drew VandenBrul and Matt Melinson co-authored “State Tax Considerations of Federal Tax Reform.” Members can stay apprised of arising state tax news by subscribing to the PICPA-produced Legislative Update email newsletter.

When we asked survey participants to identify three issues regulators and legislators should focus on, the top responses were corrections to the TCJA (77%) and action on expired tax provisions still not undertaken (68%). The third-greatest concern, business-related guidance that could affect sole proprietors, partners, and S corporation shareholders (55%), demonstrates CPAs’ ongoing role as advocates for the small-business community.

When the surveyed PICPA members were asked what one issue they would like to know more about, and more than 40% indicated that they wanted to stay apprised of pending corrections as well as several areas of business-related guidance. The PICPA has resources available to members to help them cut through the clutter and get the information they need:

Not a PICPA member? We can help with that too. Apply online or give us a call and we will be happy to assist you (215) 972-6185.

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Statements of fact and opinion are the authors’ responsibility alone and do not imply an opinion on the part of PICPA officers or members. The information contained in herein does not constitute accounting, legal, or professional advice. For professional advice, please engage or consult a qualified professional.