Survey: Full Recovery by Year-End?

Sage study finds nearly three-quarters of U.S. small and midsize businesses expect to see pre-pandemic revenue levels by end of the year.

Sage survey: Pandemic prompts innovation
Sage survey: Pandemic prompts innovation

By CPA Trendlines

U.S. businesses are becoming increasingly confident they will return to pre-pandemic revenue levels by the end of 2021, according to a new survey by Sage, a market leader in cloud business management software.

Nancy Harris, EVP and Managing Director, Sage North America
Harris

MORE SURVEYS & RESEARCH: Making Partner: What Managers Need to KnowWho’s Heating Up Accounting Tech?  |  Survey: Tax Season Swings into the Red  |  Peer-to-Peer: Your Best Advice for 2021  |  PPP Client Fraud: How Much Risk Is Too Much?  |  PPP Traps: 1 in 5 Accountants Report Shady Dealings  |  Clients Want to Pay You More (Really!)  |  Accounting Firms Take Billions in PPP Payouts  |  Members Only: The full CPA Trendlines list of 6,611 PPP borrowers in the tax and accounting industry

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“It’s no surprise the COVID-19 pandemic disproportionately affected small and midsize businesses, along with their employees and customers. As we faced unique challenges at home and work, businesses saw great success implementing new programs, offering flexible work arrangements, and prioritizing commitment to the communities in which they operate,” says Nancy Harris, EVP and Managing Director, Sage North America. “As the world begins to reopen, it is critical that these key learnings from the last year are not lost, and that organizations continue to leverage creativity and technology to foster stronger relationships with employees, customers, and prospects for continued growth.”

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How a Few of the Wealthiest Skate Around the IRS

And the IRS is looking the other way.

By CPA Trendlines

The Internal Revenue Service isn’t supposed to consider a taxpayer’s income or wealth when prioritizing Taxpayer Delinquent Accounts. Rather, the Service is supposed to focus on balances due, pursuing collection of higher amounts.

MORE: Pros Tackle 49% of E-filed Returns | Survey: Tax Season Swings into the Red | Another Tax Season from Hell? | Pros Process 44% of Tax E-filings | Tax Professionals Report Tough Slogging | Busy Season 2021 Gets Off to Weak Start
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Obviously, many of those higher balances are owed by taxpayers (or tax dodgers) in the higher adjusted gross income brackets, and the IRS believes that pursuing high balance dues effectively addresses high AGIs.

But the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration says that focusing on the balance due is increasing the risk of high earners skipping out on what they owe.

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Avalara CRUSH 2021: The New Rules for Tax Tech

McFarlane

CEO McFarlane: “Navigate the new rules that are defining global commerce as we know it.”

Avalara, a leading provider of tax compliance automation for businesses of all sizes, today announced details of its keynotes and featured speakers for Avalara CRUSH Virtual, its fifth annual tax conference, and industry gathering.

“This year, Avalara CRUSH is designed to help attendees navigate the new rules that are defining global commerce as we know it,” said Scott McFarlane, co-founder, and CEO of Avalara. “We’ve assembled thought leaders and experts on the forefront of tax compliance to share their insights, views, and strategies for success. I’m confident that attendees will walk away with the knowledge and insights needed to tackle tax compliance and help ensure tax never stands in the way of opportunity.”

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173% Increase in IRS Correspondence Backlog

Who knew?

By CPA Trendlines

We all know how the IRS works. They send a letter to a possibly delinquent taxpayer who, in quivering fear, returns a response that is slipped through the mail slot in the IRS door, where it falls into a shredder that feeds into a massive onsite incinerator. The letter’s ashen remains are then loaded onto a rocket and shot toward Alpha Centauri, never to be seen again.

MORE: Hunker Down: The IRS Backlog Isn’t Going Away Anytime Soon | The IRS Studebaker Bomb | Imagine IRS ‘Concierge’ Service. Just Imagine. | IRS Has Recruiting Problems, Too
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Actually, that’s not entirely true. In 2019, IRS Compliance Services Collection Operations managed to respond to 25 percent of its “inventory” of Taxpayer Delinquent Account correspondence. The other 75 percent was considered “over-aged” after not being dealt with within 45 days of receipt.
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The IRS’s $3-Billion Problem

bar chart

 

92% of paper returns stuck in the backlog.

By CPA Trendlines Research

Tax preparers would be wise to advise their clients to e-file this year. According to the Government Accountability Office and the Taxpayer Advocate Service, the IRS is not keeping up with paper returns.

In fact, it seems to be barely trying.

MORE: Hunker Down: The IRS Backlog Isn’t Going Away Anytime Soon | The IRS Studebaker Bomb | Imagine IRS ‘Concierge’ Service. Just Imagine. | IRS Has Recruiting Problems, Too
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Chickenfeed

The COVID-19 pandemic is only part of the problem. Yes, of course, last year, with IRS offices shuttered and phones shut down for months, a backlog built up. By the end of the year, “IRS had a significant backlog of returns and taxpayer correspondence,” according to the GAO.
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Hunker Down: The IRS Backlog Isn’t Going Away Anytime Soon

The bottom line: For every dollar in new funding, the IRS could be collecting 10 times that. 

The Tax Season from Hell:
Will the new May 17 extension help or hurt accountants?
Join the survey. Get the answers.

By CPA Trendlines Research

IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig says the backlog of millions of returns will remain unresolved for months more.

https://cpatrendlines.com/?p=82486“We would hope to be through this backlog by the summer,” Rettig told House Ways and Means Oversight Subcommittee Chairman Bill Pascrell, who said 24 million returns are jammed in the IRS pileup. Rettig countered with 2.4 million, the number of individual returns.

MORE on A TAX SEASON FROM HELL: What Tax Pros Are Saying about Busy Season 2021 | Hunting the Amended Return | The IRS Studebaker Bomb | Make Your Firm Faster, Smarter, Richer … with Millennials | Tax Professionals Report Tough Slogging | 50 Ways to Make More Money in Busy Season | Stop Beating Up the IRS – Really | Imagine IRS ‘Concierge’ Service. Just Imagine.

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His testimony came a day after the government announced it would extend the filing deadline from April 15 to May 17, with crucial details still to be determined. The new rules sent tax software companies rushing to push out updates and left accountants and their clients in limbo. And, he said the delay in the tax-filing deadline could postpone the launch of a new monthly child tax credit payment program,

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Another Tax Season from Hell?

Tax-pro efiling lags 40%. New due date: May 17. Details to come.

What’s the word on Tax Season 2021?https://cpatrendlines.com/2021/03/17/irs-efiling-feb-19-2021/

The Tax Season from Hell:
What’s the word?
Join the survey. Get the answers.

By CPA Trendlines Research

The IRS is reporting that efiling is running 30 percent behind last year’s rate, with DIY’ers down by 22 percent and tax professionals trailing year-ago by 39.7 percent for the week ended Feb. 19.

And tax-pro market share of all efiling has slipped to 38 percent, down from 44 percent the last time we checked.

MORE TAX SEASON: Hunting the Amended Return | Pros Process 44% of Tax E-filings | The IRS Studebaker Bomb | Make Your Firm Faster, Smarter, Richer … with Millennials | Tax Professionals Report Tough Slogging | 50 Ways to Make More Money in Busy Season | Stop Beating Up the IRS – Really | Imagine IRS ‘Concierge’ Service. Just Imagine. | IRS Has Recruiting Problems, Too | Team Expectations: A Checklist for Busy Season | You’re Not JUST Taxes | The Happier, Saner, Richer Tax Firm | SURVEY: A Glint of Optimism for 2021 | PPP Traps: 1 in 5 Accountants Report Shady Dealings
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Meanwhile, Treasury and the IRS announced that the federal income tax filing due date for individuals for the 2020 tax year will be automatically extended from April 15 to May 17. The IRS promised to provide details “in the coming days.”

Among the accountants reporting more problems this year, the comments are stark:
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Trullion: New A.I. Startup Targets Rev Rec, Lease Accounting

Founder and CEO Isaac Heller seeks to be “single source of truth” for lenders.

With Rick Telberg
For CPA Trendlines

On the even of Trullion breaking out of stealth mode, CEO and co-founder Isaac Heller tells CPA Trendlines in this video interview how the new fintech company can automate the process of lease accounting to establish a cost-effective, functional view of contract data for auditors accounting firms and CFOs alike.

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Formerly known as SMRT, the Trullion platform automates unstructured data such as PDFs and translates them into real-time financial reports, including lease accounting and revenue recognition.

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Hunting the Amended Return

Chart of options
Where’s my amended return? IRS online self-assistance applications

 

What to tell clients when they ask.

By CPA Trendlines Research

Long, long ago, humans began to use tools. Technology began with the sharpened stick and the stone hammer and soon grew into the wheel, the arch, the printing press, electricity, interplanetary transportation, finally reaching a lofty pinnacle known as the “Where’s My Amended Return” tool at the IRS.

MORE: The IRS Studebaker Bomb | Imagine IRS ‘Concierge’ Service. Just Imagine. | IRS Has Recruiting Problems, Too
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Today, with a few clicks of a mouse and a few keystrokes of information, a taxpayer can discover virtually nothing about the fate of an amended return. And it takes only a few minutes!
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