Weekly Report from Washington, D.C.

During the week of November 19, Senator Charles “Chuck” Grassley, R-Iowa, announced his intension to chair the Senate Finance Committee (SFC) in the 116th Congress. The IRS proposed rules to address the effect of the temporary increase in the basic exclusion amount used in computing estate and gift taxes. Financial institutions that have been adversely affected by California wildfires were requested to keep the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) updated if they experience delays in filing their Bank Secrecy Act reports.

Congress

Senator Charles “Chuck” Grassley, R-Iowa, announced his intension to chair the Senate Finance Committee (SFC) in the 116th Congress, (TAXDAY, 2018/11/19, C.1).

Treasury

TIGTA. Actions were not always taken to protect taxpayers associated with reported external data breaches, according to a report by the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA), (TAXDAY, 2018/11/20, T.1).

FinCEN. Financial institutions that have been adversely affected by California wildfires were requested to keep the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) updated if they experience delays in filing their Bank Secrecy Act reports, (TAXDAY, 2018/11/20, T.2).

IRS

Estate and Gift Taxes. The IRS proposed rules to address the effect of the temporary increase in the basic exclusion amount used in computing estate and gift taxes, (NPRM REG-106706-18; IR-2018-229; TAXDAY, 2018/11/21, I.1.

Tax Deadlines. The IRS updated the list of postponable tax deadlines for taxpayers, (Rev. Proc. 2018-58; TAXDAY, 2018/11/21, I.2).

Plan Liability Rates. The IRS released current plan liability rates for November 2018, (Notice 2018-86; TAXDAY, 2018/11/21, I.3).

Transition Relief. The IRS has extended the withholding and reporting transition relief that applies to certain IRA payments, (Notice 2018-90; TAXDAY, 2018/11/21, I.4).

National Tax Security Awareness Campaign. The National Tax Security Awareness campaign, to be held from December 3 through December 7, will shed light on cybersecurity issues, (IR-2018-228; TAXDAY, 2018/11/21, I.5).

FAQs. The IRS updated FAQs on LB&I directive about credit for increasing research activities and more, (TAXDAY, 2018/11/21, I.6).

Tips. S corporations were provided tips on electing to convert to C corporations, (TAXDAY, 2018/11/21, I.7).

UNICAP Regs. The IRS issued final regulations under the uniform capitalization (UNICAP) rules adopt a new simplified method (the “modified simplified production method”) for determining additional Code Sec. 263A costs allocable to property produced by a taxpayer or acquired for resale, (T.D. 9843; Rev. Proc. 2018-56; TAXDAY, 2018/11/20, I.1).

Safe Harbors. The IRS sought comments on how to integrate individual coverage HRAs with (1) the applicable large employer’s shared responsibility payment rules, and (2) with the employer self-insured plan nondiscrimination rules, (Notice 2018-88; TAXDAY, 2018/11/20, I.2).

Leave-Based Donation Programs. The IRS extended leave-based donation programs to victims of Hurricane Michael, (Notice 2018-89; TAXDAY, 2018/11/20, I.3).

Filing Season. The IRS reminded taxpayers to keep a copy of their past tax returns and supporting documents for at least three years, since key information from their prior-year return may be required to file in 2019, (IR-2018-225; TAXDAY, 2018/11/20, I.4).

Scams. The IRS issued a warning regarding a surge of fraudulent emails using tax transcripts as bait to entice users to open documents containing malware, (IR-2018-226; TAXDAY, 2018/11/20, I.5).

Like-Kind Exchanges. The IRS reminded taxpayers that like-kind exchange tax treatment is now limited to exchanges of real property, (IR-2018-227; TAXDAY, 2018/11/20, I.6).

PMTAs. PMTAs discussing restitution-based assessments and taxes on kerosene used in aviation were issued, (TAXDAY, 2018/11/20, I.7).

Comment Request. The IRS requested comments on Passive Foreign Investment Company (PFIC) and notice of expatriation forms, (TAXDAY, 2018/11/20, I.8).

PTINs. Return preparers were urged to renew expiring Preparer Tax Identification Numbers (PTINs), (TAXDAY, 2018/11/20, I.9).

Unused Housing Credit Pool. The IRS announced the allocation to qualified states of previously unused low-income housing credit authority for calendar year 2018, (Rev. Proc. 2018-55; TAXDAY, 2018/11/19, I.1).

IRB. The IRS released I.R.B. 2018-47, dated November 19, 2018, (TAXDAY, 2018/11/19, I.2).

FSAs. The IRS urged eligible employees to participate in health Flexible Spending Arrangements (FSAs) in 2019, (IR-2018-224; TAXDAY, 2018/11/19, I.3).

Quarterly List. The IRS has released the list of individuals who lost their U.S. citizenship within the meaning of Code Sec. 6039G during the quarter than ended on September 30, 2018, (TAXDAY, 2018/11/19, I.4).

AFRs. The Applicable Federal Rates (AFRs) for December 2018 were released, (Rev. Rul. 2018-30; TAXDAY, 2018/11/19, I.5).

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CCHTaxGroup

All stories by: CCHTaxGroup