More tax tips for 2015 tax preparation time
- Rules for capitalization of business property have changed.
- Improvements are now defined as betterments, adaptations or restorations with specific subcategories such as materials and supplies.
- Certain materials and supplies can be expensed but must be defined as “incidental” and “non-incidental.”
- New de minimis rules apply.
- Higher contribution limits for pension plans apply but not IRAs.
- Personal and dependent exemptions increase to $3,950 per person.
- The 2014 Standard Deductions have changed:
- $6,200 for single taxpayers.
- $9,100 for head of household.
- $12,400 for married couples filing jointly.
- New IRS interpretation of IRA rollover rules will be enforced beginning in 2015. Only one 60-day rollover per 12-month period will be allowed for all IRAs. Trustee-to-trustee transfers do not fall under this limitation.
- Virtual currency (e.g., Bitcoin) is now treated as property for U.S. Federal Tax purposes.
- Applies to wages paid.
- Payments to independent contractors.
- Gains and losses.
- Information reporting required.
- On December 19th, President Obama signed the Tax Increase Prevention Act, which retroactively extended for one year more than 50 tax provisions that expired at the end of 2013. The deductions for educator’s expenses, state and local sales taxes, and tuition and fees, and the Research and Development Credit for businesses are among the breaks that have been extended, along with relief for homeowners with cancelled debt from foreclosures and short sales. The bill was signed barely in time for the IRS and tax software companies to finalize the 2014 forms and publications for tax season. The bill did not address tax year 2015 and beyond, so at this point most of the extended provisions have already expired again.
Please note: This is only a short list of some of the new tax rules for 2014. Please spend time with your tax preparer and learn the rules at IRS.gov so you and your advisor are knowledgeable about qualifying expenses, eligible purchases, contributions, gifts, etc., so you can reduce your tax burden.