Jan
05
2017

Doug Stanley of Bryan Cave to Give Estate Planning Presentation to Artists at the Regional Arts Commission

On February 13, 2016, Doug Stanley, partner in the Private Client Services group at Bryan Cave, and Justin Flach of The Commerce Trust Company (an alumnus of the Bryan Cave Private Client Services group), will present “Creating A Living Legacy”, addressing estate planning basics to a group of artists.  The presentation is hosted by the Volunteer Lawyers and Accountants for the Arts and will be held at the Regional Arts Commission, 6128 Delmar, St. Louis, Missouri.

Written by in: Events
Jan
03
2017

EO Update: e-News for Charities & Nonprofits

1.  Form 990-N e-Postcard page unavailable 12/26/16 to 1/6/17

The Annual Electronic Filing Requirement for Small Exempt Organizations — Form 990-N (e-Postcard) page will be down from December 26, 2016 at 11:59 a.m. until January 6, 2017 at 1:00 p.m. EST due to an annual planned maintenance. We apologize for this inconvenience.

2.  Tax Preparedness Series: Remember donations may cut tax bills

As tax filing season approaches, the IRS reminds taxpayers who give money or goods to a charity by December 31, 2016 that they may be able to claim a deduction on their 2016 federal income tax return and reduce their taxes.

3.  Helpful tax tips

Review these helpful tax tips.

Written by in: General
Jan
03
2017

Select Nonprofit Accounting Issues and Updates

When: Thursday, Jan. 26, 2017, 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Where: # 202 J.C. Penney Conference Center on the UM-St. Louis North Campus
Fee: $ 25

Program Description: Changes are coming for nonprofit financial statements. This class will cover some specific, technical topics that nonprofits need to know as they prepare for future changes in their financial management and reporting. Topics include:

  • Changes to net asset classifications
  • Disclosure of allocation methods
  • Functional expense information
  • Reporting of investment returns
  • Reporting of leases
  • And more…

Some of these are fairly technical topics that nonprofits should start hearing about and planning for now so they can address them more proactively, prior to audit time.

Instructor Linda Howdeshell founded her firm to serve nonprofits in May 2015 after almost 30 years of working with nonprofits. Linda works with clients to improve efficiency of systems and internal controls. She serves on the Not-for-Profit Committee of the Missouri Society of CPAs and is a member of both the MSCPA and AICPA. Linda also serves as a fiscal volunteer on United Way panels.

Click to Register

Written by in: Events
Dec
14
2016

Comparison of Current Tax Rates, Trump Proposed Rates and Republican Blueprint Proposed Rates

While there is considerable uncertainty among wealth planners and tax professionals regarding how the incoming administration will impact the federal tax code, nearly everyone agrees that change is imminent. With that in mind, we have assembled this chart, which compares current tax rates with President-elect Donald Trump’s proposed tax plan, and the House Republicans’ Blueprint plan (released in June, 2016).  Click here.

Dec
08
2016

Employers & Health Coverage Providers: You Have More Time in 2017 to Provide Information Forms to Covered Individuals

The IRS extended the 2017 due date for employers and coverage providers to furnish information statements to individuals. The due dates to file those returns with the IRS are not extended. This chart can help you understand the upcoming deadlines.

Action 2017 Reporting Due Dates for…
Applicable Large Employers – Including Those That Are Self-Insured Self-insured Employers That Are Not Applicable Large Employers Coverage Providers  – other than Self-Insured Applicable Large Employers*
 Provide 1095-B to responsible individuals

 

Not Applicable** Mar. 2 Mar. 2
File 1094-B and  1095-B with the IRS Not Applicable** Paper: Feb. 28E-file: Mar. 31* Paper: Feb. 28E-file: Mar. 31*
Provide 1095-C to full-time employees Mar. 2 Not Applicable Not Applicable
File 1095-C and 1094-C with the IRS Paper: Feb. 28E-file: Mar. 31* Not Applicable Not Applicable

* If you file 250 or more Forms 1095-B or Forms 1095-C, you must electronically file them with the IRS. Electronically filing ACA information returns requires an application process separate from other electronic filing systems. Additional information about electronic filing of ACA Information Returns is on the Affordable Care Act Information Reporting (AIR) Program page on IRS.gov and in Publications 5164 and 5165.

** Applicable large employers that provide employer-sponsored self-insured health coverage to non-employees may use either Forms 1095-B or Form 1095-C to report coverage for those individuals and other family members.

This chart applies only for reporting in 2017 for coverage in 2016.

See IRS Notice 2016-70 for more information.

Nov
30
2016

Private Foundations and Impact Investing

Bryan Cave recently organized a half-day symposium examining the opportunities and legal considerations related to responsible and impact investing strategies. The Responsible and Impact Investing Symposium, held on November 10, was co-presented by Fordham University’s Gabelli School of Business and featured leaders in this growing field who discussed opportunities and legal considerations for investors, private foundations, financial advisers and for-profit entities, from start-ups to established ventures. More than 135 guests attended the event.  With respect to private foundations, we focused our discussion on the use of program related investments and what we hope is a growing trend to use these tax-advantaged tools to make a difference in our communities.   Below are the foundation slides from the event.  Special thanks to my co-speakers, John Oddy from Foundation Source and Dana Bezerra from the Heron Foundation.

For a complete list of speakers and the program agenda, please click here

For additional information about this program, please click here

Program Related Investments and Private Foundations

Impact Investing and Private Foundations

Written by in: Events
Nov
22
2016

TE/GE Announces New Information Document Request Management Process

The Tax Exempt and Government Entities Division of the Internal Revenue Service has issued new internal guidance for its agents on issuing information document requests (IDRs). The IRS issues IDRs to gather information during an examination. The new process will go into effect on April 1, 2017. Prior to its implementation, TE/GE will provide training to its agents on the new process.

Under the new process:

  1. Taxpayers will be involved in the IDR process.
  2. Examiners will discuss the issue being examined and the information needed with the taxpayer prior to issuing an IDR.
  3. Examiners will ensure that the IDR clearly states the issue and the relevant information they are requesting.
  4. If the taxpayer does not timely provide the information requested in the IDR by the agreed upon date, including extensions, the examiner will issue a delinquency notice.
  5. If the taxpayer fails to respond to the delinquency notice or provides an incomplete response, the examiner will issue a pre-summons notice to advise the taxpayer that the IRS will issue a summons unless the missing items are fully provided.
  6. A summons will be issued if the taxpayer fails to provide a complete response to the pre-summons letter by its response due date.

The new process requires the examiners’ managers to be actively involved early in the process and ensures that IRS Counsel is prepared to enforce IDRs through the issuance of a summons when necessary. Throughout this process, the IRS will respect taxpayer rights‎ and the changes will reflect the agency’s commitment to the Taxpayer Bill of Rights.

The updated process will:

  • Provide for open and meaningful communication between the IRS and taxpayers.
  • Reduce taxpayer burden and provide consistent treatment of taxpayers.
  • Allow the IRS to secure more complete and timely responses to IDRs.
  • Provide consistent timelines for IRS agents to review IDR responses.
  • Promote timely issue resolution.
Written by in: Governance
Oct
31
2016

2017 Qualified Plan Limits Released

The IRS recently released updated limits for retirement plans.  Our summary of those limits (along with the limits from the last few years) is below.

Type of Limitation 2017 2016 2015 2014
Elective Deferrals (401(k), 403(b), 457(b)(2) and 457(c)(1)) $18,000 $18,000 $18,000 $17,500
Section 414(v) Catch-Up Deferrals to 401(k), 403(b), 457(b), or SARSEP Plans (457(b)(3) and 402(g) provide separate catch-up rules to be considered as appropriate) $6,000 $6,000 $6,000 $5,500
SIMPLE 401(k) or regular SIMPLE plans, Catch-Up Deferrals $3,000 $3,000 $3,000 $2,500
415 limit for Defined Benefit Plans $215,000 $210,000 $210,000 $210,000
415 limit for Defined Contribution Plans $54,000 $53,000 $53,000 $52,000
Annual Compensation Limit $270,000 $265,000 $265,000 $260,000
Annual Compensation Limit for Grandfathered Participants in Governmental Plans Which Followed 401(a)(17) Limits (With Indexing) on July 1, 1993 $400,000 $395,000 $395,000 $385,000
Highly Compensated Employee 414(q)(1)(B) $120,000 $120,000 $120,000 $115,000
Key employee in top heavy plan (officer) $175,000 $170,000 $170,000 $170,000
SIMPLE Salary Deferral $12,500 $12,500 $12,500 $12,000
Tax Credit ESOP Maximum balance $1,080,000 $1,070,000 $1,070,000 $1,050,000
Amount for Lengthening of 5-Year ESOP Period $215,000 $210,000 $210,000 $210,000
Taxable Wage Base $127,200 $118,500 $118,500 $117,000
FICA Tax for employees and employers 7.65% 7.65% 7.65% 7.65%
Social Security Tax for employees 6.2% 6.2% 6.2% 6.2%
Social Security Tax for employers 6.2% 6.2% 6.2% 6.2%
Medicare Tax for employers and employees 1.45% 1.45% 1.45% 1.45%
Additional Medicare Tax* .9% of comp >$200,000 .9% of comp >$200,000 .9% of comp > $200,000 .9% of comp > $200,000

*For taxable years beginning after 12/31/12, an employer must withhold Additional Medicare Tax on wages or compensation paid to an employee in excess of $200,000 in a calendar year for single/head of household filing status ($250,000 for married filing jointly).

Oct
25
2016

Don’t forget to register for the free webcast about Clarifying the Universal Availability and Other 403(b) Retirement Plan Requirements

When: October 27, 2016; 2 p.m. (Eastern)

How: Register for this event. You will use the same link to attend the event.

Learn about:

  • Hours of service
  • Changes in employee status
  • Student participation
  • Other 403(b) rules

This hour long webcast will provide answers to many of the questions we received for the May 19, 2016, Understanding the Universal Availability Rules in a 403(b) Retirement Plan webcast. We encourage you to review the prior webcast before attending this one.

Continuing education (CE) certificates of attendance will not be offered for this program.

Written by in: Events
Oct
21
2016

IRS Overhauls the Retirement Plan Correction Program

With the looming end of the determination letter program as we know it, the IRS has issued an updated Revenue Procedure for the Employee Plans Compliance Resolutions System (EPCRS). Released on September 29, 2016, Rev. Proc. 2016-51 updates theEPCRS procedures, replaces Rev. Proc. 2013-12 and integrates the changes provided in Rev. Proc. 2015-27 and Rev. Proc. 2015-28. The updated revenue procedure is effective January 1, 2017 and its provisions cannot be used until that date. Rev. Proc. 2013-12, as modified by Rev. Proc. 2015-27 and Rev. Proc. 2015-28, should be used for any corrections under the EPCRS for the remainder of 2016. Highlights from the new revenue procedure are outlined below.

Changes

  • Determination Letter Applications. Determination letter applications are no longer required to be submitted as part of corrections that include plan amendments. The new revenue procedure also clarifies that any compliance statement for a correction through plan amendment will not constitute a determination that the plan amendment satisfies the qualification requirements.
  • Favorable Letter Requirements. A qualified individually designed plan submitted under the Self Correction Program (SCP) will still satisfy the Favorable Letter requirement when correcting significant failures even if its determination letter is out of date.
  • Fees. The Voluntary Correction Program (VCP) fees are now user fees. Effective January 1, 2017 a plan sponsor must refer to the annual Employee Plans user fees revenue procedure to determine the applicable VCP user fees.
  • Model Forms. The model forms for a VCP submission (Forms 14568-A through 14568-I) can now be found on the IRS website.
  • Audit CAP Sanctions. The method used to determine Audit Closing Agreement Program (Audit CAP) sanctions has been revised. Sanctions will no longer be a negotiated percentage of the Maximum Payment Amount (MPA), but will be determined by the IRS on a “facts and circumstances” basis. The MPA will be one factor used to determine a sanction. Generally, sanctions will not be less than VCP fees.
  • Refunds. The IRS will no longer refund half of the user fee if there is disagreement over a proposed correction in an Anonymous Submission.

Incorporations

  • The provisions of Rev. Proc. 2015-27, which clarify the methods that may be used to correct overpayment failures, modify the SCP for Code Section 415(c) failures to extend eligibility to certain plans with repeated corrections of excess annual additions so long as elective deferrals are returned to affected employees within 9½ months after the end of the plan’s limitation year, and lower the fees for certain VCP submissions, have been incorporated.
  • The provisions of Rev. Proc. 2015-28, which modify EPCRS by adding safe harbor correction methods for employee elective deferral failures in both 401(k) and 403(b) plans, have also been incorporated into Rev. Proc. 2016-51.

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