News for Your Week Ahead: May 21, 2021

On this weeks’ episode of MSATP TV President Babara Smith joins Executive Director Bill Feehley to tell us about the Employee to Entrepreneur Signature Program.

Watch on YouTube.

Coming Up: On Thursday, May 27th at 2 p.m., Cliff Reiter of National Accounting Sales will join Bill Feehley on MSATP TV to tell us how his company can help you with buying or selling your accounting practice.Tune in on Facebook for this episode and more!

IRS Provides Guidance on Premium Assistance and Tax Credit for Continuation Health Coverage | IR-2021-115

The Internal Revenue Service today provided guidance on tax breaks under the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 for continuation health coverage under the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1985 (COBRA).

Notice 2021-31 provides guidance for employers, plan administrators, and health insurers regarding the new credit available to them for providing continuation health coverage to certain individuals under COBRA.

The American Rescue Plan provides a temporary 100% reduction in the premium that individuals would have to pay when they elect COBRA continuation health coverage following a reduction in hours or an involuntary termination of employment. The new law provides a corresponding tax credit for the entities that maintain group health plans, such as employers, multiemployer plans, and insurers. The 100% reduction in the premium and the credit are also available with respect to continuation coverage provided for those events under comparable State laws, sometimes referred to as “mini-COBRA.”

For more information, please click here.

Comptroller Franchot Says bFile Ready for RELIEF Act Sales and Use Tax Credit | To Qualify, Vendors Must File Timely Returns and Sales Tax Collections for March, April and May Cannot Exceed $6,000

Comptroller Peter Franchot announced Tuesday that the agency’s bFile system is now available for qualified business owners to claim a Sales and Use Tax Credit under the RELIEF Act of 2021.

“The RELIEF Act included many complicated tax provisions that were difficult to implement immediately,” Comptroller Franchot said. “Our agency has worked tirelessly to make it easy for business taxpayers to understand the different types of relief they may be eligible for and to simplify the process so the aid can quickly get to those who need it most.”

The legislation authorizes eligible vendors to claim an increased tax credit ONLY for the three consecutive sales periods of March, April and May – which typically are filed in April, May and June. However, taxpayers should note that filing deadlines for those months have been extended to July 15, 2021 and will be considered “timely filed” if filed by the July 15th deadline.

For more information, click here.

Here’s How TaxPayer Can Check The Status of Their Federal Tax Return | Tax Tip 2021-70

The most convenient way to check on a tax refund is by using the Where’s My Refund? tool. Taxpayers can start checking their refund status within 24 hours after an e-filed return is received. The tool also provides a personalized refund date after the return is processed and a refund is approved.

Taxpayers can access the Where’s My Refund? tool two ways:

  • Visiting IRS.gov
  • Downloading the IRS2Go app

To use the tool, taxpayers will need:

  • Their Social Security number or Individual Taxpayer Identification number
  • Tax filing status
  • The exact amount of the refund claimed on their tax return

The tool displays progress in three phases:

  • Return received
  • Refund approved
  • Refund sent

When the status changes to approved, this means the IRS is preparing to send the refund as a direct deposit to the taxpayer’s bank account or directly to the taxpayer in the mail, by check, to the address used on their tax return.

The IRS updates the Where’s My Refund? tool once a day, usually overnight, so taxpayers don’t need to check the status more often.

Taxpayers should allow time for their financial institution to post the refund to their account or for it to be delivered by mail. Calling the IRS won’t speed up a tax refund. The information available on Where’s My Refund? is the same information available to IRS telephone assistors.

To use the where’s my refund tool, click here.