Tax Season Roundup: 2017

Join the survey. Get the results.

By CPA Trendlines

Here at CPA Trendlines, we know busy season isn't the entirety of your practice ... but it's a huge chunk of it.

How did your tax season measure up?
Join the survey; get the benchmarks

Stay tuned for a full report.

 

Here in one handy place is all of the tax-related information we've published this season.

How 2017 is going

READ MORE →

Regional CPA Firms Go Head-to-Head with Big Four in Talent Wars

Highly rated for 'quality of life:' Moss Adams, Plante Moran, Friedman, BPM.

By CPA Trendlines 

Deloitte, KPMG and Moss Adams are gaining ground in the recruiting wars, according to a new survey of more than 8,000 accountants.

While PwC maintains its hold as the best brand in the business, second-ranked Deloitte is closing the gap, and KPMG jumped one spot to fourth place, in the latest Vault Accounting 50, a ranking of the best accounting firms to work for.

Even though the Big 4 firms rank highly in the Formal Training category, mid-sized firms are big winners in Quality of Life Rankings.

  • Michigan-based Plante Moran ranks No. 1 in 11 categories, including Culture, Overall Satisfaction, Informal Training, Business Outlook, and Firm Leadership.
  • New York City-based Friedman ranks No. 1 in Hours, Work/Life Balance, and Relationships with Supervisors. And,
  • San Francisco-based BPM ranks No. 1 in Overall Diversity, Minority Diversity, and LGBT Diversity.

Meanwhile, Chicago-based Grant Thornton got knocked back to fifth and West Coast firm Moss Adams leaped three spots to No. 8, moving back into the top 10.

The Top 10 firms in the survey are: READ MORE →

Avalara Takes CRUSH Conference to Austin

Learn more at CRUSHaustin.com
Learn more at CRUSHaustin.com.

2017 theme: Home of the tax automation revolution.

By CPA Trendlines

Avalara, Inc., a leading provider of cloud-based tax compliance automation for businesses of all sizes, is bringing back CRUSH, a tax compliance automation conference and industry gathering, for the second year, scheduled May 2-3, 2017 in Austin, Texas. CPA Trendlines is a sponsor.

Bringing together leaders in finance and technology who are enabling the strategic evolution of accounting, CRUSH offers attendees opportunities to learn, educate and network with hundreds of peers and experts.

READ MORE →

Taxpayers Tell How They Really Feel

Pie chart of when people plan to pay their taxes
^ When people plan to pay their taxes

They don't like the IRS, but they might get an IRS tattoo to skip out on taxes.

By CPA Trendlines Research

Let’s put the shoe on the other foot for a moment.

MORE ON TAX SEASON: Five-Point Action Plan for Turning Tax Scam Threats into New Opportunities | Liberty Tax Earnings Down 48% | H&R Block Lagging Behind Last Year | Tax Pros Filing Only 51% of E-Returns | Tax Refunds Up Slightly | Tax Filings Data Looking Less Squirrely | Tax Return Filings Still Lag, But Pros Hold 57% of Market | Tax Filings Down, but IRS Blames the Calendar
GoProCPA.comExclusively for PRO Members. Log in here or upgrade to PRO today.

We know how accountants view tax season. But how about the average taxpayer?
READ MORE →

Four Common Errors in Form 1098-T

Form 1098-T Tuition Statement

The minefields in tuition statements.

By Dennis P. Benvie MS, CPA
Surgent Professional Education

Errors associated with educational credits, specifically for Form 1098-T, can be easily misinterpreted.

Eligible educational institutions often file Form 1098-T to report either the aggregate amount of payments received (Box 1) for qualified tuition and related expenses or the aggregate amount billed (Box 2) for such tuition and expenses. Should you receive this form, here are four common errors to watch for, and how to interpret them.

Benvie

1) Educational credits are based on the amount of adjusted qualified education expenses paid for the student in 2016 for academic periods beginning in 2016 or beginning in the first 3 months of 2017. An issue occurs when the costs for early 2016 tuition were billed in 2015, and the educational institution utilizes Box 2 of Form 1098-T.Example: In January 2016, Alex pays $6,000 for his final semester of classes. The university Alex attends actually billed the tuition payment in December 2015. In May 2016, Alex pays certain qualifying expenses amounting to $200. Alex receives Form 1098-T for 2016. Box 1 is blank, and box 2 includes $200.

READ MORE →

Taxes: Beyond Income to Gas and More

Color-coded U.S. map of state tax rates
The darker the blue, the lower the taxes, with Alaska at #1 and Illinois at #51

Ranking the states by tax burden.

By CPA Trendlines Research

You hear the word "tax" right now and the first thought is "income" – ah, but there are so many more varieties.

MORE ON TAX SEASON: Five-Point Action Plan for Turning Tax Scam Threats into New Opportunities | Liberty Tax Earnings Down 48% | H&R Block Lagging Behind Last Year | Tax Pros Filing Only 51% of E-Returns | Tax Refunds Up Slightly | Tax Filings Data Looking Less Squirrely | Tax Return Filings Still Lag, But Pros Hold 57% of Market | Tax Filings Down, but IRS Blames the Calendar
GoProCPA.comExclusively for PRO Members. Log in here or upgrade to PRO today.

While the average U.S. household pays more than $5,700 in federal income taxes, there is significant disparity when it comes to state and local taxes.
READ MORE →