Daily Tax Update - July 14, 2005

OVERSIGHT SUBCOMMITTEE TO HOLD HEARING ON TAX FRAUD BY PROFESSIONAL TAX PREPARERS:
On July 20, the House Ways and Means Oversight Subcommittee Members will hold a hearing to explore what it views as a growing problem of fraud by professional tax preparers. According to the Committee, the IRS has 343 active investigations of tax professionals, and it identified about $79 million in suspect refunds last year.

  • Subcommittee Chairman Jim Ramstad (R-MN) said, "Because of the complexity of our laws, taxpayers increasingly rely on a professional tax preparer. Most tax preparers are honest, but there is a troubling and persistent occurrence of tax fraud by unscrupulous preparers who take advantage of taxpayers. It is incumbent on us to review what the IRS is doing to address this problem and consider our legislative options."

WAYS AND MEANS SUBCOMMITTEE HOLDS TAX REFORM HEARING:
On July 28, the House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Select Revenue Measures will hold a hearing to provide Members of the House of Representatives the opportunity to testify on tax reform issues of "importance to their constituents, including views on how to make the tax code simpler, fairer and more pro-growth."

  • In announcing the hearing, Ways and Means Subcommittee member Rep. Dave Camp (R-MI) said, "As the Committee begins to review the formal recommendations of the President’s Advisory Panel on Federal Tax Reform, the Subcommittee will examine how reform proposals made by Members of Congress may satisfy the President’s objectives of fair, simple, and growth--oriented tax reform."

TAX BILLS INTRODUCED JULY 13:

  • H.R. 3268 sponsored by Rep. Phil Gingrey (R-GA) would exclude from gross income gain from the conversion of property by reason of eminent domain.
  • H.R. 3273 sponsored by Rep. Jim Saxton (R-NJ) would allow a deduction for flexible fuel vehicles.
  • H.R. 3274 sponsored by Rep. Jim Saxton (R-NJ) would extend the deduction for qualified clean-fuel vehicle refueling property and amend the Clean Air Act to make ethanol fuels more available to motorists.

INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE - CIRCULAR 230 DISCLOSURE:
As provided for in Treasury regulations, advice (if any) relating to federal taxes that is contained in this communication (including attachments) is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of (1) avoiding penalties under the Internal Revenue Code or (2) promoting, marketing or recommending to another party any plan or arrangement addressed herein.

STEPTOE & JOHNSON LLP - TAX PRACTICE
Steptoe & Johnson LLP has one of the largest and most diverse law firm tax practices in the country. The practice covers the entire spectrum of federal taxation, including representation of businesses before the Congress, Treasury and the national office of the IRS; transactional planning for domestic and multinational corporations; complex audit and controversy work for corporations and other business interests contesting IRS adjustments; litigation before the Tax Court, Court of Federal Claims, district courts, courts of appeals and the Supreme Court. The firm's tax practice also encompasses all aspects of employee benefits (ERISA), executive compensation, tax-exempt organizations and charitable giving.  Steptoe has an extensive state and local tax practice, representing an array of business clients on complex sales and use tax, corporate income tax and property tax matters, both advising those clients and handling audits, administrative appeals, and litigation for them.  Read  more information on Steptoe's tax practice