Business Insights, Research & Perspectives

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August 15, 2012

Proposed Regulations Clarify Deduction Limitation in Reimbursement Arrangements (article)

Recently-released proposed reliance regulations clarify the exception to the 50 percent meal and entertainment expenses deduction limit under Code Sec 274(n) where amounts are paid or incurred under reimbursement or other expense allowance arrangements. 

August 15, 2012

IRS Finalizes Regulations on Employer Deduction Limit for Entertainment Use of Aircraft (article)

Long-awaited final regulations describe an employer's deduction for entertainment, amusement or recreational use of employer-owned aircraft by specified individuals. The final regulations generally track proposed regulations issued in 2007.

August 8, 2012

Chief Counsel Nixes Domestic Production Activities Deduction for Online Software (article)

IRS Chief Counsel has rejected the application of the third-party comparable exception to a seller of online software, effectively denying the Code Sec. 199 domestic production activities deduction (DPAD) for income from the software (CCA 201226025). 

August 8, 2012

Proposed Regulations Reaffirm Only Bona Fide Shareholder Loans Create S Corporation Basis (article)

The IRS has issued proposed regulations providing that S corporation shareholders increase their basis in the S corporation, for indebtedness of the S corporation to the shareholder, only if the indebtedness is bona fide. 

August 8, 2012

IC-DISC Planning Impacted by Expiring Bush Tax Cuts (article)

When the 15 percent qualified dividend tax rate was introduced in 2003, businesses that exported goods to foreign countries had a unique opportunity to leverage the difference between qualified dividend and ordinary tax rates by setting up an Interest Charge Domestic International Sales Corporation (IC-DISC). 

August 7, 2012

Updated HIPAA Compliance Guide

The DOL’s Employee Benefit Security Administration has recently updated its HIPAA compliance assistance guide.  The guide not only provides an overview of the HIPAA portability provisions but also includes compliance tips for related federal laws such as the Newborns' and Mothers' Health Protection Act, the Women's Health and Cancer Rights Act and the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act.  The guide also includes a chart of required notices pursuant to these laws, as well as model language for the notices. The guide is a good starting place to ensure compliance with the plethora of laws that have been enacted over the years.

August 7, 2012

Keep Wellness in Health Plan, says 11th Circuit

Last year, we discussed a class action case relating to an employer offering financial incentives for participating in a group wellness program.  The case, Bradley Seff v. Broward County, addressed the applicability of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) to wellness programs. Specifically, a group of employees challenged the employer’s imposition of a wellness program that requires completion of a health risk assessment (HRA). Failure to complete the HRA would result in a financial penalty. The complainant alleged that this was a violation of the ADA because it impermissibly requested medical information. Generally, the ADA permits the collection of medical information as long as it is voluntary. The “voluntary” nature of the medical information collection was in question. 

August 7, 2012

The Privacy and Security Police Mean Business

Once again, the HHS’ Office for Civil Rights has wielded its authority with regard to HIPAA privacy and security compliance.  This time, a state government agency (Alaska Department of Health and Social Services) was assessed a $1.7M dollar penalty due to a breach of protected information.  In particular, it was found that the Alaska agency had inadequate policies and procedures, inadequate safeguards, and inadequate training in place to ensure the protection of individually identifiable information. 

August 1, 2012

Uncertainty Grows Over Fate of Bush-Era Tax Cuts

The year 2012 began with the fate of the Bush-era tax cuts uncertain, and no resolution appears in sight. Democrats and Republicans remain far apart on whether to extend all or some of the Bush-era tax cuts and other tax incentives scheduled to sunset after 2012. Two years ago, President Obama and the GOP agreed to extend the Bush-era tax cuts along with the so-called tax extenders in the Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization and Job Creation Act of 2010 (2010 Tax Relief Act). Today, prospects for any agreement between Democrats and Republicans before the November elections are murky at best. The likelihood of a lame-duck Congress deciding the fate of the Bush-era tax cuts increases daily. Also growing daily is the uncertainty many taxpayers face in tax planning for 2013 and beyond.

July 27, 2012

Top Signs You are Ready for a New Accounting Solution (article)

How do you know when it's time to upgrade to a more robust and sophisticated accounting or Enterprise Resource Planning solution?
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