NSA News

  • 26 Feb 2014 3:08 PM | Anonymous
    ALEXANDRIA, VA, February 26, 2014 – Right about now taxpayers are scrambling to find wage statements, receipts for charitable deductions, mortgage statements, and other documents needed to file their taxes.

    Losing important tax documents is easy to do amid the blizzard of paperwork before tax day. The good news: replacing most tax documents is also easy.

    First, you need many documents and bits of information to file your tax return, including:

    • Personal data, such as Social Security Numbers and dates of birth for yourself, your spouse, and dependents; a child-care provider’s tax identification number or Social Security Number; and documentation of any changes to your address and phone number.

    • Employment and income forms and data, such as W-2s, K-1s and 1099 Rs; W2-Gs, 1099-MISCs, 1099-Gs, 1099-SSAs, 1099-INTs, 1099-DIVs, and 1099-Bs; Employer Identification Numbers (EINs); and alimony received and the Social Security Number of the payor. Most taxpayers receive their W-2 forms and most 1099s by January 31. Some 1099s may arrive later; corrected forms may arrive as well.

    • Homeowner/renter forms and data, such as 1098s, 1099-Ss, 1099-As or 1099-Cs; final escrow closing statements, including those for a refinance; proof of property taxes paid; proof of rent paid during the tax year and the landlord’s name, address, and phone number; and lists and receipts for moving expenses.

    • Proof of contributions to individual retirement accounts.

    • Proof of deductible items, such as forms 1098-E and 1098-T; proof of alimony paid, including the amount paid and the name and Social Security Number of the recipient; letters from charities for cash contributions, and a detailed log for non-cash contributions, with the value of items donated, date donated, original purchase price, and date of original purchase; mileage logs and copies of reimbursements from employers; miscellaneous deduction receipts for such items as uniforms, union dues, investment expenses and job-hunting expenses; proof of child-care expenses; and medical expense receipts.

    • Business, farm, and rental information, such as receipts or documentation for business-related expenses, inventory reports and payables and receivables ledgers; receipts for all major purchases, such as machinery, equipment, and furniture; business, farm, or rental income and expenses; and documentation for self-employed health insurance premiums.

    • Proof of taxes paid.

    Internal Revenue Service (IRS) regulations require tax returns to be filed with all proper documents. File for an extension if you don’t have them, and be sure to send a payment if you think you might owe. Working with a tax preparer can help you get organized.

    Earnings Forms

    Your employer(s) for the tax year can provide copies of many wage statements. Employers are legally required to keep copies of your W-2s and other payroll information for at least four years. If you haven’t received the current year’ in the mail, check your email: some employers electronically send not only notification that your tax forms are in the mail but sometimes attach the forms to an email.

    • If you can’t find your W-2, request another copy from your employer as soon as possible (you may have to pay a fee to get the replacement).

    If you don’t receive your replacement W-2 even after reminding your employer, contact the Internal Revenue Service (800/829-1040). (You can also substitute IRS Form 4852, “Substitute for Form W-2, Wage and Tax Statement,” and refer to your last pay stubs to fill in needed information. File the 4852 close to tax day, April 15 – do not file it early.)

    When you contact the IRS, have on hand your approximate dates of employment and an estimate of what you earned and federal tax you had withheld (much of that information is on your last pay stub), as well as the name, last address, and last phone number of your employer.

    • You should receive a 1099-MISC from any company that paid you at least $600 during the tax year, $10 in the case of royalties or some broker payments. Banks also send 1099s if account holders earn $10 or more of annual interest; many banks permit downloading 1099s from their customer service websites; local branches also often issue copies.

    You still must report 1099-type income to the IRS even if you didn’t receive the form itself.

    • For out-of-business employers, try emailing or s-mailing to the last known address. Also try Googling the employer for a new address.

    Past Returns

    You can request a free transcript of previous years’ tax returns (the current tax year’s as well as your returns for the previous three tax years) from the IRS by mailing Form 4506 or 4506-T, by using the Service’s online “Order a Transcript” system (http://www.irs.gov/Individuals/Order-a-Transcript) or by phoning the IRS (800/908-9946).
    A return transcript shows most line items from your return as it was originally filed, including any accompanying forms and schedules. A tax account transcript shows any later adjustments either you or the IRS made after filing and such data as marital status, type of return filed, adjusted gross income and taxable income.
    Transcripts do not contain your state and local tax information.
    Credit Card, Banking Statements

    Receipts can be the trickiest documents to gather before filing, but they’re vital to verifying business and other deductions.

    If you can’t find a receipt for a certain deduction, see if you can use bank and credit card statements to prove the expense; it might be best to ask a tax preparer. Statements should show the name of the recipient (likely your name), as well as the date and amount of the expense.

    Some businesses will issue copies of back receipts. Most banks can also provide copies of past checks if you know the approximate date and the check number. If you paid the expense using a debit card, check your bank to see if they offer a receipt-replacement feature with your card.

    Stock Statements

    Almost all holding companies can provide online records of stock statements and cost-basis calculations (cost basis is an historical analysis and calculation to determine if a taxpayer who sold stock recognized a taxable gain or a loss in the sale).

    If you need a past stock price, Yahoo also has an online research tool at http://biz.yahoo.com/r/.
    Tuition statements

    Schools often allow students to download tax forms such as 1098-Ts or tuition statements. Lenders are the best source for 1098-E Forms or the Student Loan Interest Statement, though if you paid less than $600 in loan interest you might not receive a 1098-E.

    If you need tax-preparation help this coming season, you can find a qualified tax preparer in your area on the NSA website at www.nsacct.org. Click on “Find a Professional” or call 800-966-6679.

    # # #

    NSA and its affiliates represent more than 30,000 members who provide accounting, auditing, tax preparation, financial and estate planning, and management services to approximately 19 million individuals and business clients. Most members are sole practitioners or partners in small- to medium- size accounting firms. NSA protects the public by requiring its members to adhere to a strict code of ethics. For more information, visit www.nsacct.org.


    Al Rickard, CAE
    President
    Association Vision
    4501 Hazelnut Court
    Chantilly, VA 20151
    703-402-9713
    arickard@associationvision.com
    www.associationvision.com
  • 26 Feb 2014 3:07 PM | Anonymous
    ALEXANDRIA, VA, February 26, 2014 – So what does the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), or Obamacare, mean for your tax situation this year?

    It won’t affect your 2013 tax return, but the National Society of Accountants (NSA) points out that the ACA will soon increase the complexity of tax filing with new rates and regulations that you – and your tax preparer – must know.

    “Now is a great time to begin planning for how you will handle health insurance this year, because we are only weeks away from the Individual Mandate kicking in,” says NSA Executive Vice President John Ams. “If you are not covered by health insurance by March 31 of this year, you may be subject to tax penalties for 2014.”

    Ams urges taxpayers to consult with their tax preparers on the health insurance issue when they meet to go over this year’s tax return.

    Among the key changes to the law:

    • The Individual Mandate begins March 31, 2014, which means that you must obtain minimum essential health coverage for 2014 if you (1) can afford it, (2) get an exemption, or (3) pay a penalty based on your income.

    • The Employer Mandate, which starts in 2015 for larger companies (100 employees or more) and in 2016 for smaller companies (50-99 employees), requires these companies to insure full-time employees or pay a per-employee fee.

    • Advanced Premium Tax Credits are available for low-to-middle income Americans to reduce costs of premiums on health insurance purchased through a state’s health insurance marketplace.

    • Small-business tax credits are available under which businesses may qualify for tax credits of up to 50 percent of their cost of employee premiums.

    Most of the 85 percent of Americans with health insurance and who make less than $250,000 a year will notice few tax and regulation changes.

    New coverage and new taxes

    Individuals must now carry health insurance on themselves and their dependents, including those not covered by any other means such as from an employer or by Medicare, Medicaid or an individually purchased policy. Open enrollment to purchase coverage for 2014 through the Health Insurance Marketplace ends March 31, 2014.

    Among the new taxes and medical-spending restrictions from Obamacare:

    • Individuals with earnings above $200,000 and married couples making more than $250,000 will see an increase in the Medicare Part A payroll tax: up 0.9 percent from 1.45 percent.

    • A 3.8 percent tax on interest, dividends, annuities, royalties, rents and gains on the sale of investments for taxpayers who are over the earnings thresholds of $200,000 for individuals and $250,000 for married couples.

    • Increased taxes on unearned income (3.8 percent) can add taxes to the sales of some homes, but many limitations apply. The 3.8 percent tax also typically doesn't apply to your primary residence nor to homes owned for longer than five years or on profits of less than $250,000 for individuals and $500,000 for couples.
    • The Medicare Part A tax is paid by both employees and employers who earn over a certain amount. This 0.9 percent increase (from 2.9% to 3.8%) is paid by employees. Small businesses making less than $250,000 are exempt, as are employees making less than $200,000 as an individual or $250,000 as a family.

    • Distributions from health flexible spending accounts (FSAs), health savings accounts (HSAs), health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs) and Archer Medical Saving accounts (MSAs) are no longer allowed to reimburse costs of over-the-counter medicines or drugs purchased without a prescription, with some exceptions; FSA contributions are now capped at $2,500; and 10-20 percent penalties are also levied on HSA and MSA spending on non-qualified medical expenses.

    Avoiding a penalty

    You can face escalating extra taxes if you have no health insurance coverage.

    If you have no health insurance, your penalty starts at the greater of 1 percent of your income above the minimum necessary for filing or $95 per uninsured adult in your household; the penalty for uninsured children is half the adult amount. You won’t pay this penalty until you file your 2014 federal income tax return in 2015.

    This year’s minimums for filing a return are $20,300-$22,700 for couples and $10,150-$11,700 for singles.

    You can avoid a penalty in a few ways. Among them:

    • Buy a policy via the Marketplace Exchange for your state.
    • Hold an insurance policy from any other source that meets the minimum standards of a midrange (bronze-level) plan on the exchanges. These policies include employer-provided health-care or other group policies, such as through an association, as well as policies you buy on your own.
    • If the only coverage you can find costs more than 8 percent of your adjusted gross income.
    • If you must go without coverage for less than three months, such as when changing jobs.
    • If you prove that a hardship caused you to go without coverage – should, for instance, your policy get canceled and you otherwise can’t afford insurance.
    No penalty can exceed the cost of a bronze-level policy on the exchanges.

    Small-business regulations and credits

    Employers with 50 or more employees must offer qualified and affordable health insurance plans for their employees. Employers who fail to do so must pay a $3,000/employee penalty beginning in 2015 for companies with 100 or more full-time workers and in 2016 for companies with 50 to 99 full-time workers.

    The Small Business Health Care Tax Credit helps small businesses and small tax-exempt organizations afford to cover employees. In general, the credit is available to small employers that pay at least half the cost of single coverage for their employees.

    Premium credit

    Two other key tax implications for now and for the future of the ACA are an advanced tax credit and the tax penalty.

    Getting health coverage through the Marketplace may qualify you for the Premium Tax Credit. You may qualify if you:

    • Buy health insurance through the Marketplace
    • Are ineligible for coverage through an employer or government plan
    • Are within income limits of four times the federal poverty level – for example, $94,200 for a family of four and $45,960 for a single person
    • File a joint return, if married; and cannot be claimed as a dependent by another person.

    If you are eligible for the credit, you can choose to: (1) have some or all of the estimated credit paid in advance to your insurer to lower what you pay out of pocket for your monthly premiums during 2014 or (2) wait to get all of the credit when you file your 2014 tax return in 2015.

    Though this credit has no effect on your 2013 return, you must file a federal income tax return for any tax year you receive advance credit payments or you plan to claim the premium credit.

    If you need tax-preparation help this coming season, you can find a qualified tax preparer in your area on the NSA website at www.nsacct.org. Click on “Find a Professional” or call 800-966-6679.

    # # #

    NSA and its affiliates represent more than 30,000 members who provide accounting, auditing, tax preparation, financial and estate planning, and management services to approximately 19 million individuals and business clients. Most members are sole practitioners or partners in small- to medium- size accounting firms. NSA protects the public by requiring its members to adhere to a strict code of ethics. For more information, visit www.nsacct.org.


    Al Rickard, CAE
    President
    Association Vision
    4501 Hazelnut Court
    Chantilly, VA 20151
    703-402-9713
    arickard@associationvision.com
    www.associationvision.com
  • 12 Dec 2013 2:13 PM | Anonymous

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    National Society of Accountants survey reports

    on fees to prepare a range of tax returns

     

    ALEXANDRIA, VA, December 12, 2013 -Taxpayers looking to hire a professional to complete their 2013 tax return can expect to pay an average of $261 for an itemized Form 1040 with Schedule A and a state tax return, according to the National Society of Accountants (NSA).

    “The IRS says it takes an average of four hours just to complete and submit a Form 1040,” says NSA Executive Vice President John Ams. “Add at least another hour if you also have to complete a state return.

    “You have to ask, ‘How much is your time worth?’ Plus I haven’t met many people who enjoy preparing their taxes, so hiring a professional to prepare your tax return can take a very unpleasant task off your plate. That’s worth something.”

    Ams adds that tax preparers make it their business to keep up with tax law changes. “If a professional tax preparer can catch even one deduction or credit you may have missed, that can easily pay for the fee,” he notes.

    Fees for non-itemized returns are also low – the average cost to prepare a Form 1040 and state return without itemized deductions is only $152.

    Fee information was collected in a survey of tax preparers conducted by NSA. The tax and accounting firms surveyed are largely owners, principals, and partners of local “Main Street” companies who have an average of more than 26 years of experience.

    “Members of NSA are highly qualified tax professionals who typically hold multiple credentials that demonstrate their expertise,” Ams adds. “Taxpayers receive personal service from people who live and work in their community and fully understand local and state tax laws in addition to their deep knowledge of the federal tax code.”

    Most of them hold widely respected credentials such as Enrolled Agent, Certified Public Accountant, Accredited Tax Preparer, Accredited Tax Advisor, and others.

    The survey also reported the average fees for preparing other Internal Revenue Service (IRS) tax forms, including:

    • $218 for a Form 1040 Schedule C (business)
    • $590 for a Form 1065 (partnership)
    • $806 for a Form 1120 (corporation)
    • $761 for a Form 1120S (S corporation)
    • $497 for a Form 1041 (fiduciary)
    • $667 for a Form 990 (tax exempt)
    • $63 for a Form 940 (Federal unemployment)
    • $142 for Schedule D (gains and losses)
    • $165 for Schedule E (rental)
    • $196 for Schedule F (farm)

    Fees vary by region, firm size, population, and economic strength of an area. The average tax preparation fee for an itemized Form 1040 with Schedule A and a state tax return in each U.S. census district are as follows:

    • New England (CT, ME, MA, NH, RI, VT) – $251
    • Middle Atlantic (NJ, NY, PA) – $274
    • South Atlantic (DE, DC, FL, GA, MD, NC, SC, VA, WV) – $270
    • East South Central (AL, KY, MS, TN) – $294
    • West South Central (AR, LA, OK, TX) – $242
    • East North Central (IL, IN, MI, OH, WI) – $238
    • West North Central (IA, KS, MN, MO, NE, ND, SD) – $208
    • Mountain (AZ, CO, ID, MT, NV, NM, UT, WY) – $245
    • Pacific (AK, CA, HI, OR, WA) – $303

    Nearly 90 percent of accounting firms offer prospective clients a free consultation, which can be worth well over $100 based on the hourly fees of most tax preparers.

    Sixty percent of accounting firms do not require payment until returns are completed and clients are satisfied. Others may require a portion of the fee upfront or payments throughout the tax return process.

    All fees assume a taxpayer has gathered and organized all necessary information. Taxpayers should also make sure they provide information on time to avoid additional fees. Some will charge an average fee of $44 to file an extension, an average fee of $78 to expedite a return, and an average fee of $85 if information is not provided by 15 days in advance of a filing deadline.

    For more information and to use an online search directory to identify a qualified tax preparer in your area, visit www.nsacct.org and click on “Find a Professional” or call 800-966-6679.

    # # #
    

    NSA and its affiliates represent members who provide accounting, auditing, tax preparation, financial and estate planning, and management services to approximately 19 million individuals and business clients. Most members are sole practitioners or partners in small- to medium-size accounting firms. NSA protects the public by requiring its members to adhere to a strict code of ethics. For more information, visit www.nsacct.org.


    For more information:

    Contact:   Al Rickard,

                   703-402-9713

                    arickard@associationvision.com

  • 20 Nov 2013 3:30 PM | Anonymous

    ALEXANDRIA, VA, November 20, 2013 - John G. Ams, J.D., Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of the National Society of Accountants (NSA), has been appointed Chair of the Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR) Subgroup of the Internal Revenue Service Advisory Council (IRSAC) beginning in January 2014.

    IRSAC is an advisory body designed to focus on broad policy matters and reviews existing tax policy and/or recommends policies with respect to emerging tax administration issues.

    IRSAC suggests operational improvements, offers constructive observations regarding current or proposed IRS policies, programs, and procedures, and advises the IRS Commissioner with respect to issues having a substantive effect on federal tax administration. The OPR Subgroup is one of four IRSAC subgroups and focuses specifically on IRS rules, regulations and administrative procedures affecting tax professionals.

    “I am deeply honored to be named to chair the OPR subgroup and look forward to providing the IRS with timely, practical and effective recommendations for implementing policies that relate to maintaining high ethical and professional standards,” Ams said.

    Ams has been a member of IRSAC since 2012 and is also a member of the Tax Section of the American Bar Association, where he serves on the Standards of Tax Practice Committee.

    “We are extremely pleased to have John Ams chair the OPR subgroup and continue to represent tax professionals and the taxpaying public as the IRS deals with the current budget environment and the rules under which tax professionals may practice,” said Steven J. Hanson, President of NSA. “Both NSA members and the IRS receive a unique benefit from his expertise and knowledge of best practices and professional standards.”

    For more information about NSA, visit www.nsacct.org.

    # # #

    NSA and its affiliates represent more than 10,000 members who provide accounting, auditing, tax preparation, financial and estate planning, and management services to approximately 19 million individuals and business clients. Most members are sole practitioners or partners in small- to medium- size accounting firms. NSA protects the public by requiring its members to adhere to a strict code of ethics. For more information, visit www.nsacct.org.

  • 16 Sep 2013 5:03 PM | Anonymous

    ALEXANDRIA, VA., September 16, 2013 – Arranging to transfer ownership of your accounting practice is one of the most complex business decisions you’ll ever face.

    A recent survey by the National Society of Accountants (http://www.nsacct.org/) revealed that less than a third (28%) of firms have a succession plan. Practitioners should think about succession planning as early as possible and draw up a plan to transition client relationships to an internal successor or an outside firm.

    One of the best ways to transmit one's legacy after retiring is to sell to the team members, partners, and partners-to-be. In this scenario, understanding how addressing the needs of both sides of the firmundefinedthe “family” inside and the family member who is exitingundefinedis crucial in making the future of the firm more successful. Successful succession means creating a more attractive and profitable environment for everyone, not just the retiring or exiting professionals. With “firm as family” in mind, everyone has a better chance of finding ways to bridge the needs and wants of both sides, improving the chances of a win for allundefinedincluding the clients.

    Mark Fowler, in his succession article “Both Sides Now” in the National Society of Accountants magazine Main Street Practitioner of May-June 2013, (http://mainstreetpractitioner.nsacct.org/Vizion5/viewer.aspx?issueID=9&pageID=12), sees the key stages of succession planning as:

    1.       Recruiting, developing, mentoring and grooming the right team members.
    2.       Constantly developing services that existing and future clients need and appreciate.
    3.       Developing a formal sales and business development program to help ensure the continuity of the business.
    4.       Shifting more and more from a practice mindset to a firm perspective.

    Whether a partner/owner is retiring, the firm is downsizing, or the business is being sold, merged, or allied with another firm, ownership transfer is going to occur. There are a number of buyers to consider:

    1. The firm itself: The company can purchase the shares of the exiting owner.
    2. The other partners and partners-to-be: These individuals can purchase ownership shares.
    3. The external strategic buyer: This buyer is looking for locations, talent, niches, and technology to enhance their business.
    4. The external revenue-oriented buyer: The singular focus of this buyer may be adding revenue. This type of sale often means rapid cost-cutting and very short transition periods.  

    No matter who the buyer is, new owners have their own goals and objectives, which could include enhanced profitability, an expanded client base and additional services, more appreciative clients and higher quality team members, and increased value out of the firm. The succession plan should include ways team members can accept and embrace these objectives.

    Among other succession tips from NSA:

    • Train individual talent and other team members in all areas of client history and general information, unique client characteristics and needs, and skills and technical information that will be required.
    • Develop a working relationship between clients and team members undefined not just those with direct responsibilities to clients, but support personnel as well.
    • Transfer in an orderly way any administrative duties the exiting professional, partner, manager, principal, or other key team members may have.
    • Develop a much more robust administrative platform to begin to handle more duties that were handled by exiting partners or other revenue-generating professionals. It’s not unusual to shift personnel from office manager position to firm administrator or from firm administrator to COO in order to more effectively handle the needs of the whole firm.
    • Enhance the sales and marketing skills of all team members, including creating  a business development process within the firm to help assure continued growth, new clients, and expanded revenue bases for existing clients.

           # # #
    
  • 12 Sep 2013 5:07 PM | Anonymous

    Alexandria, VA, September 12, 2013 – Accounting professionals who have made strong contributions to the accounting profession were honored at the recent National Society of Accountants (NSA) 68th Annual Meeting in Indianapolis, IN. Several NSA Affiliated State Organizations (ASOs) were also presented with major awards.

    Accountant of the Year – This award was presented to Dave Rancourt, EA, ABA, ATA, ARA, CSA, CEP of Sarasota, FL for outstanding achievement and service to NSA, the accounting and tax profession, the state society, and the community.

    Rancourt has been an active member of NSA for nearly 25 years, currently serving as Vice Chair of Federal Taxation Committee 2012-13 and recently appointed to ACAT Board. Rancourt is a past Florida State Director.

    Distinguished Service Award – This award was presented to Paul J. Cannataro, CPA, CFP, MST of Drexel Hill, PA in recognition of his significant and exemplary contributions for the betterment of NSA and its membership as well as the accounting profession. The award recognizes continuous service, loyalty, and dedication to NSA. Cannataro is chair of NSA’s Federal Taxation Committee where he has provided services with RTRP legal issues, IRS Closing of Practitioner E-Services, Fiscal Cliff challenges, Circular 230 revisions while attending numerous IRS meetings on Capitol Hill.

    Affiliated State Organization (ASO) of the Year – This special award goes to co-winners – the California Society of Accounting & Tax Professionals (CSATP) and the California Society of Tax Consultants (CSTC). CSATP and CSTC recently merged to meet the needs of their CA members. The ASO of the Year award honors the overall achievements of CSATP and CSTC and their work in promoting and implementing NSA programs, including membership recruitment, member services, seminar and education sponsorship, legislative activity, and financial stability.

    Best Series of Articles Award – This award was presented to Eric Ewald, Executive Director of Minnesota Association of Public Accountants, in recognition of his significant and exemplary series of articles in the NSA’s newsletter, which helps keep membership informed about what is happening locally and nationally.

    Keith Billings Memorial Award – This award was presented to two outstanding ASO publications, including The Montana Society of Public Accountants Newsletter, published by the Montana Society of Public Accountants (fewer than 300 members), and The Oregon Association of Independent Accountants, published by the Oregon Association of Independent Accountants (300 or more members). They are judged according to the importance of topics, coverage of activities, timeliness of articles, format, and overall appearance.

    Best ASO Website – This award, which recognizes outstanding Affiliated State Organization websites, was presented to ASOs in two categories. For Division I (fewer than 300 members), the award went to the New Mexico Society of Public Accountants. Its website is provides information about their upcoming education opportunities, a link to financial calculators with 20 to 25 different calculation choices.

    For Division II (more than 350 members), the award went to the Independent Accountants Association of Illinois. This website is very user friendly and provides not only information about upcoming education opportunities, scholarship applications and newsletters but also information on the NSA annual convention.

    Myron D. Schreibman Award – This award went to the Missouri Society of Accountants for their stellar public relations program, which kept their members informed while expanding the share of voice and reach of NSA locally and nationally. Most noted are reprints of various sources including a Forbes magazine article with the headline “Phil Michelson Wins Historic British Open and Incurs 61% Tax Rate” and an internet report “Smishing: A Serious Identity Theft Scheme.”

    For more information about NSA, visit www.nsacct.org.

    # # #
    
  • 11 Sep 2013 5:08 PM | Anonymous

    Alexandria, VA, September 11, 2013 - The National Society of Accountants (NSA) elected a slate of new officers, District Governors, and State Directors at its 68th Annual Meeting in Indianapolis, IN.

    The following officers were installed to the NSA Executive Committee for 2013-2014:

    • President – Steven J. Hanson, CPA, EA, Cokato, MN
    • First Vice President – Marilyn M. Niwao, CPA, ATA, JD, Wailuku, HI
    • Second Vice President – Kathy R. Hettick, EA, ABA, ATP, RTRP, Enumclaw, WA
    • Secretary-Treasurer – Brian L. Thompson, CPA, Little Rock, AR

    Governors for NSA Districts II, IV, VI, VIII, and X were elected to the NSA Board of Governors for two-year terms ending in 2015. Elected to terms as governors were:

    • Milton “Sandy” Martin, Jr., ATP, ARA, RTRP (District I), Exeter, NH
    • William R. Silzer, ABA, ATP (District III), Sterling, VA (Second Term)
    • Jim Weickgenant, EA, ATA, (District V), Baraboo, WI
    • Joel Grandon, LPA, EA, (District VII), Marion, IA
    • Bernadette Koppy, EA, ABA, ATA, (District IX), Fairbanks, AK

    State Directors stood for election and re-election in Districts II, IV, VI, VIII, and X.

    Elected to first terms as State Directors were:

    Re-elected for second and additional terms as State Directors were:

    • Sharron M. Cirillo, LPA, ABA, ATP (DE – District II)
    • James Alfred Johnson (NY – District II)
    • Joseph J. Mesquita, PA, ATA, ATP (NJ – District II)
    • Warren Hilson, LPA (AL – District VI)
    • Curtis Banks Lee, Jr., ATA, ATP (NC – District IV)
    • Pamela C. Stamps, CPA  (MS – District VI)
    • Debra J. Cope, CPA, ATA, ATP  (TN – District VI)
    • Mae Yee, CPA (NM – District VIII)
    • Joanne Elsen , CPA (AZ – District X) 
    • Morris Miyabara, EA, ATA (CA – District X)

    For more information about NSA, visit www.nsacct.org.

    # # #
    

    NSA and its affiliates represent 30,000 members who provide accounting, auditing, tax preparation, financial and estate planning, and management services to approximately 19 million individuals and business clients. Most members are sole practitioners or partners in small- to medium- size accounting firms. NSA protects the public by requiring its members to adhere to a strict code of ethics. For more information, visit www.nsacct.org.

  • 06 Aug 2013 9:21 AM | Anonymous

    ALEXANDRIA, VA, August 5, 2013 – The National Society of Accountants (NSA) Scholarship Foundation is seeking donations for its annual Scholarship Foundation Auction, to be held August 23-24 during the NSA 68th Annual Meeting, August 21-24, 2013 in Indianapolis, Indiana.

    The Scholarship Foundation provides scholarships, grants, awards and loans to deserving students who have indicated a firm intention to pursue accounting studies. This year, the Foundation was able to contribute $35,700 to 41 deserving candidates.

    The auction will help fund future scholarships. To maximize Scholarship auction proceeds, the Foundation seeks top-quality donations to offer in the auction. Popular items in past years included:

    • Local foods: steaks, hams, pork chops, lobsters, crabs, jams, fruit, wine
    • Complimentary registrations to education events
    • Handmade crafts or gift baskets
    • Jewelry, artwork, sculptures, furniture, or home décor
    • Quilts and throws
    • Travel
    • Software programs, tax research, practice management tools 

    The NSA Foundation will provide appropriate recognition to donors and donor organizations. To donate an item, contact Allison Ingram at (703) 549-6400 ext.1319 or aingram@nsacct.org. Donors are asked to provide item descriptions and photos of their items by August 12, 2013. Items must arrive at the Annual Meeting site by August 20, 2013.

    # # #

  • 20 Jun 2013 9:55 AM | Anonymous

    Alexandria, VA, June 20, 2013 undefined A total of 39 students are gaining a boost to their college educations in accounting by earning scholarships from the National Society of Accountants (NSA) Scholarship Foundation. Together, they will receive $32,700 in scholarship awards.

    The Foundation has provided more than $1 million since 1969 to deserving undergraduate and graduate students who are committed to pursuing a career in accounting, helping to develop more qualified young accountants.

    The scholarships range from $500 - $2,000. These recipients were selected on the basis of an overall outstanding academic record, demonstrated leadership and participation in school and community activities, honors, work experience, stated goals and aspirations, and financial need.

    “Many accounting students need money like this to help them achieve their educational goals, and we are pleased to do our part to help them,” explains NSA Scholarship Foundation President Martha A. Bell, EA, ABA, ATA, ARA, “We look forward to seeing them join the profession in the future.”

    The 2013 scholarship recipients are listed below with their universities, the NSA Affiliated Organizations or the named scholarships that provided funding, and the amount of each scholarship:


    Elizabeth C. Anderson
    Brigham Young University, Provo, UT
    Washington Association of Accountants: $500            

    Anna R. Baines 
    Liberty University, Lynchburg VA
    Montana Society of Public Accountants: $500

    Rachel M. Baker
    Southwestern College, Winfield, KS
    Oklahoma Society of Accountants: $500

    Ellyn M. Bruckerhoff
    Missouri State University, Springfield, MO
    Steven Desdier Memorial Award: $1,000                              

    Brenda M. Canosa
    Fairfield University, Fairfield, CT
    New York Society of Independent Accountants: $750                               

    Allison C. Carroll
    Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ      
    Arizona Society of Practicing Accountants Merit Scholarship: $2,000              

    Nicole K. Cartier
    Babson College, Babson Park, MA           
    Maine Association of Professional Accountants: $500               

    Amy J. Coogler
    University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, AL   
    Alabama Association of Accountants:  $1,000

    Michaela M. Diamond
    University of Denver, Denver, CO
    Public Accountants Society of Colorado: $1,000

    Shelby L. Diehl
    University of Nebraska – Omaha, Omaha, NE    
    Nebraska Society of Independent Accountants: $1,000       

    Annola L. Duke
    Rasmussen College: Bismarck, Bismarck, ND       
    North Dakota Society of Accountants: $1,000

    Taylor M. Erickson
    University of North Dakota, Grand Forks, ND
    North Dakota Society of Accountants: $1,000

    Margaret E. Freeland
    Hillsdale College, Hillsdale, MI   
    Washington Association of Accountants: $1,000

    Vivica A. Futrell
    University of Illinois: Springfield, Springfield, IL  
    Independent Accountants Association of Illinois: $500

    Kiley A. Greene
    Carthage College, Kenosha, WI 
    Independent Accountants Association of Illinois: $700               

    Madelyn G. Himmelwright
    Southern Oregon University, Ashland, OR
    Alaska Society of Independent Accountants: $500               

    Matthew J. Halowell
    University of Maryland, College Park, MD            
    $500

    Hunter N. Hoyer
    University of Central Missouri, Warrensburg, MO            
    Missouri Society of Accountants: $1,000               

    James T. Huet
    University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
    Milton Brown Award: $1,000                              

    Riley W. Kinser
    Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR   
    Oregon Association of Independent Accountants: $500               

    Kevin P. Krautscheid
    Santa Clara University, Santa Clara, CA|
    Oregon Association of Independent Accountants: $500               

    Katarina A. Krouse
    Concordia University, Portland, OR
    Nevada Society of Independent Accountants: $500                        

    Stephen M. Kucera
    Kansas State University, Manhattan, KS               
    Ronny Woods Memorial Award: $1,000             

    Katelyn A. Leal 
    University of South Florida, Tampa, FL   
    Florida Society of Accountants: $500               

    Geoffrey A. Lemay
    Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, IL  
    Independent Accountants Association of Illinois: $500                  

    Jason D. Moseley
    Arkansas State University, Jonesboro, AR            
    Ronny Woods Memorial Award – AR: $1,000               

    Allison D. Nelson
    University of Wisconsin-Superior, Superior, WI 
    Millard Ashley Memorial Award: $1,000

    Ashley M. Ortiz
    Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ      
    Arizona Society of Practicing Accountants: $1,000           

    Matthew R. Ozturk
    Northeastern State University, Tahlequah, OK
    Oklahoma Society of Accountants: $1,500               

    Jasmine S. Pettaway
    Auburn University, Auburn, AL
    Florida Society of Accountants: $500

    Taylor A. Robinson
    University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, AR
    Arkansas Society of Accountants: $1,250               

    Meryl H. Saunders
    University of Miami, Coral Gables, FL
    New Jersey Association of Public Accts: $1,000  

    Cameron J. Scotese
    Rutgers, State University of New Jersey – Camden, Camden, NJ
    New Jersey Association of Public Accountants: $1,000   

    Hannah G. Sick
    Lock Haven University of Pennsylvania, Lock Haven, PA
    Pennsylvania Society of Tax & Accounting Professionals: $1,000

    Sherman L. Standberry
    Georgia State University, Atlanta, GA
    Stanley Stearman Award: $2,000

    Florencio E. Vera
    Roosevelt University, Chicago, IL
    Independent Accountants Association of Illinois: $500   

    Ashlynne E. Watts
    Auburn University, Auburn, AL
    Florida Society of Accountants: $500

    Katrina N. Woods
    Madison Area Technical College, Madison, WI
    Wisconsin Association of Accountants: $500       

    Andy Z. Yau
    Bentley University, Waltham, MA
    Massachusetts Association of Accountants: $500

    To learn more about the NSA Scholarship Foundation program or to make contributions, visit http://www.nsacct.org/about/nsa-scholarship-foundation

    # # #
    

    NSA and its affiliates represent 30,000 members who provide accounting, auditing, tax preparation, financial and estate planning, and management services to approximately 19 million individuals and business clients. Most members are sole practitioners or partners in small- to medium- size accounting firms. NSA protects the public by requiring its members to adhere to a strict code of ethics. For more information, visit www.nsacct.org.

     

    The National Society of Accountants (NSA) Scholarship Foundation is a 501(c)3 tax-exempt organization formed in response to NSA member commitment to education and the accounting profession. Through its national scholarship program, the Foundation encourages the next generation of accountants by providing financial assistance to college students majoring in accounting.  The Foundation also administers an Educational Grant Program which provides grant funding for the development or enhancement of educational programs, surveys, research and other education activities for those currently in the profession. The NSA Scholarship Foundation, a tax-exempt organization, relies on voluntary, tax-deductible contributions received from individuals, businesses and organizations to fund the activities necessary to sustain its programs.


  • 01 Mar 2013 5:06 PM | Anonymous

    Special Alert
    IRS Getting Set to Accept More Form 1040 Forms

    As NSAlert readers are aware, the IRS was forced to delay acceptance and processing for the tax forms listed below until the first week in March. The IRS computer programming will be completed over the weekend and has informed software developers and transmitters that they can begin sending in their stockpiled return inventory beginning at 7 AM ET on Sunday, March 3.  The IRS plan is to adhere to the following timeline:

     

     (1) When returns processing is operational at 7:00 AM, ET on Sunday, transmitters should only send their stockpiled inventory, evenly spread throughout the day on Sunday, This will allow the Modernized e-File team to quickly review reject trends to ensure the schemas and business rules work as intended.  Transmitters are requested NOT TO ENABLE ONLINE FILING for the forms until the IRS officially announces the processing of these forms targeted for the first week of March.

    (2) Barring any problems, the IRS will issue a QuickAlert to transmitters early in the week of March 3 announcing the official opening. At that time, transmitters will be allowed to enable online filing for these forms.


    TY 2012 Tax Forms Scheduled for Startup
    :

    • Form 3800 General Business Credit 

    • Form 4136 Credit for Federal Tax Paid on Fuels 

    • Form 5074 Allocation of Individual Income Tax to Guam or the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands 

    • Form 5471 Information Return of U.S. Persons With Respect to Certain Foreign Corporations 

    • Form 5695 Residential Energy Credits 

    • Form 5735 American Samoa Economic Development Credit  

    • Form 5884 Work Opportunity Credit 

    • Form 6478 Credit for Alcohol Used as Fuel 

    • Form 6765 Credit for Increasing Research Activities 

    • Form 8396 Mortgage Interest Credit 

    • Form 8582 Passive Activity Loss Limitations 

    • Form 8820 Orphan Drug Credit 

    • Form 8834 Qualified Plug-in Electric and Electric Vehicle Credit 

    • Form 8839 Qualified Adoption Expenses 

    • Form 8844 Empowerment Zone and Renewal Community Employment Credit 

    • Form 8845 Indian Employment Credit 

    • Form 8859 District of Columbia First-Time Homebuyer Credit 

    • Form 8864 Biodiesel and Renewable Diesel Fuels Credit 

    • Form 8874 New Markets Credits 

    • Form 8900 Qualified Railroad Track Maintenance Credit 

    • Form 8903 Domestic Production Activities Deduction 

    • Form 8908 Energy Efficient Home Credit 

    • Form 8909 Energy Efficient Appliance Credit 

    • Form 8910 Alternative Motor Vehicle Credit 

    • Form 8911 Alternative Fuel Vehicle Refueling Property Credit 

    • Form 8912 Credit to Holders of Tax Credit Bonds 

    • Form 8923 Mine Rescue Team Training Credit 

    • Form 8932 Credit for Employer Differential Wage Payments 

    • Form 8936 Qualified Plug-in Electric Drive Motor Vehicle Credit

    ***********************************************************************************************************************************************************************

    IRS and Sequestration – Any Impact on Filing Season?

    Although the sequester due to begin at midnight tonight is on the minds of everyone inside the Washington Beltway, we are also mindful that it is also a matter of concern for NSA members who are busy preparing tax returns.  With filing season barely underway (see the article above about the availability of forms this coming week) what will be the effect of the sequester on the IRS and return preparers?

     

    Acting IRS Commissioner Steven Miller sent an email to all IRS employees today and said IRS employees will “continue to deliver for the nation’s taxpayers” in his memo.  That is why the IRS will wait until after tax filing season before furloughing its workers, Miller said.

     

    “Despite our current and planned efforts to cut expenses, the reality is that our greatest expense, by far, is employee pay,” Miller wrote.  For that reason, if sequestration occurs, IRS employees should expect to be furloughed for five to seven days, or no more than one day per pay period, before the end of the fiscal year, according to Miller.

     

    Casual “Merchants” Likely to Get IRS Underreporting Notices 

    Small business taxpayers whose gross receipts, as reported by credit card companies and third-party networks, appear to exceed the income stated on their tax returns may soon be receiving notices from the IRS inquiring about the discrepancy. Specifically included in this category are individuals who sell items on Ebay and other online auction sites as well as food cart operators, mom-and-pop shops, or swap meet participants.

     

    In various forums and meetings, IRS officials have said the agency would begin sending “soft letters” of inquiry to taxpayers whose Form(s) 1099-K, Merchant Card and Third Party Network Payments, show an unusually high portion of receipts from credit card payments and other reportable transactions but whose tax returns do not show commensurate levels of income. The letters would ask these taxpayers to provide additional information about the apparent over- or underreporting of their gross credit card and other receipts, the IRS said. 

     

    The letters are an outgrowth of a provision in the Housing Assistance Tax Act of 2008, which required reporting of income from merchant payment cards beginning in 2011undefined including credit, debit, and certain electronic transactionsundefinedto provide the IRS a tool to help increase voluntary compliance and improve collections. 

     

    The IRS has acknowledged it is aware that the amounts reported by various third-parties, such as PayPal, may not match a merchant's monthly reported income for legitimate reasons, including accounting discrepancies such as the use of an accrual system or a difference between parties calendar year versus fiscal year accounting systems.  Furthermore, discrepancies can arise because Form 1099-K is a report of gross receipts and does not take into account a refund of a merchant's cost of goods, or other deductions from gross income. 

     

    The IRS plans to begin with the soft letters and to request taxpayers to amend their returns if they agree with IRS's assessment of underreporting. 

     

    New Financial Statement Revenue Reporting Rules to Be Effective in 2017

    The Financial Accounting Standards Board decided February 20 to make new accounting rules on revenue recognition for annual periods effective on January 1, 2017.  FASB also decided not to allow early adoption of the planned accounting standard, which it hopes to issue in final form no later than June 30. 

     

    Virtually every sizeable commercial enterprise in the United States, Canada, and Europe, and many thousands of companies elsewhere around the world would have to apply the new revenue recognition rules.  The principles underlying FASB’s approach to the rulesundefinedwhich should provide consistent treatment for computer-based commerce as well as construction projectsundefinedare based on a company recognizing revenue from a contract with a customer when a contractual obligation is performed. Discussion at FASB, as well as background materials made available at the February 20 meeting, outlined a methodology containing five steps: 

    • identify the contract with a customer; 

    • identify the contract's separate performance obligations; 

    • determine the transaction price; 

    • allocate the transaction price to specific performance obligations in the contract; and 

    • recognize revenue when or as the entity fulfills its performance obligation.

     

    5IRS Issues 2013 Deduction Limits For Passenger Vehicle Depreciation 

    The IRS on February 25 released the 2013 depreciation deduction limits under tax code Section 280F(a) for owners of passenger cars, trucks, and vans. 

     

    Revenue Procedure 2013-21 provides the deduction limitations for owners of passenger automobilesundefinedincluding trucks and vansundefinedfirst placed in service during calendar year 2013. The guidance also includes the amount to be included in income by lessees of passenger automobiles first leased during calendar year 2013. 

     

    Rev. Proc. 2013-21 will be published in Internal Revenue Bulletin 2013-12 on March 18.  A copy is also available at http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-drop/rp-13-21.pdf

     

    FASB to Release Going Concern Standard in April 

    FASB has finalized its decision to require management to provide disclosures in the footnotes to the financial statements when existing events or conditions signal “that it is more likely than not that the entity may be unable to meet its obligations within a reasonable period of time from the financial statement date,” according to a staff update on the going concern project.  The going concern assessment would no longer be the duty of the auditor. 

     

    FASB Chair Leslie Seidman suggested that the proposed standard would represent an improvement in financial reporting by having management make “an early presentation at a sooner point in time” that there may exist “potential doubt” about the ability of the enterprise to continue to operate and cover its obligations.

     

    According to an update written by the FASB staff, at each reporting period, management would gauge the entity's potential inability to continue as a going concern and the need for related disclosures. “In doing so, management would consider the likelihood of an entity's potential inability to meet its obligations as they become due for a reasonable period of time,” staff accountants wrote.  A company’s management would assert in the financial statements that there is “substantial doubt” about the firm's ability to continue operating as a going concern when the likelihood of its inability to meet its obligations within a reasonable period of time reaches “probable,” according to the update.

     “The assessment would not consider the mitigating effect of management plans that are outside the ordinary course of business,” FASB's staff continued in the update. “Because the assessment is inherently judgmental,” the board aims that the term “more likely than not” should be viewed as an approximate benchmark for initiating disclosures “and not as a bright-line threshold,” the staff wrote. 

     

    FASB plans for the standard released in April to list “example indicators” to aid management's assessment of the need for the disclosures about going concern.

©2018, Virginia Society of Tax & Accounting Professionals, formerly The Accountants Society of Virginia, 
is a 501(c)6 non-profit organization.

PO Box 3363 | Warrenton, VA 20188 | Phone: (800) 927-2731 | Fax: (888) 403-0920 | asv@virginia-accountants.org

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