Feature Article

Ethics Rules, Penalties, and the Tax Preparers Engagement Letter

Perhaps one of the most important, but also one of the most overlooked, parts of the 1040 U.S. Individual Income Tax Return is the section near the bottom of the second page that states: “Under penalties of perjury, I declare that I have examined this return and accompanying schedules and statements, and to the best of my knowledge and belief, they are true, correct and accurately list all amounts and sources of income I received duri... Anthony Santullo, EA

Feature Article

Excess Depreciation Claimed, An Ethical Dilemma

I MET JUSTIN FUNDALINSKI of Jim Saulnier & Associates while volunteering time for the betterment of the Financial Planning Association. He asked a question that gave me pause. Tax questions that cause me to pause are the spice of life. His question was about a fascinating situation he encountered regarding depreciation and disposition of residential rental real estate. So down the rabbit hole I went, thoroughly reviewing t... John R. Dundon II, EA

Tax Court

Is the United States Tax Court a Court of Equity?

Grisel A. Smyth, Petitioner v. Commissioner of Internal Revenue, Respondent T.C. Memo. 2017-29 Filed February 7, 2017   Under the United States Constitution, the U.S. Tax Court is an Article I court. This means that the powers of the Tax Court are more restricted than those of courts that are granted pow... Steven R. Diamond, CPA

Feature Article

Learn to Lead at SSLA

Are great leaders born or made? This question has been debated for generations. In my opinion, the answer is a resounding, “both.” Some people do seem to have an innate something that makes others gravitate toward them and follow their lead. Yet leadership is also a skill that can be studied, practiced, and developed over time. Imagine what kind of leader you would be today if you had been taking 30 hours of leadership edu... Jerry Gaddis, EA, MBA

Capitol Corner

NAEA Joins Forces with the CPAs and Lawyers to Outline Reforms for the IRS

It is not often that there is consensus among the associations representing tax practitioners regulated under Circular 230. In fact, it might be unprecedented. The National Association of Enrolled Agents (NAEA) has joined forces with the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) with support from the Tax Section of the American Bar Association (ABA), along with groups representing both Circular 230 practitioners and the unenrolled. The produ... Jeffery S. Trinca, JD

Feature Article

Reading the Internal Revenue Code

Why would anyone subject themselves to reading the Internal Revenue Code? It’s not exactly a spellbinding novel, or even an interesting nonfiction work on your favorite topic, unless your favorite topic is tax law. When most people think of the Code, they think of it as being an impenetrable morass of legalese gobbledygook, more useful as a cure for insomnia than a practical resource for the tax professional. But being able to effecti... Carolyn Richardson, EA