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September 2013 Archives

Japanese Government is at Odds With Itself Over Sales Tax Hike

It isn't just the United States that is in the constant midst of tax reform debates. Across the Pacific, the Land of the Rising Sun is going through an internal struggle/debate over whether to raise its sales tax amid a slowing economy with substantial national debt. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe wants to raise the national sales tax from 5% to 8% in April and then to 10% in October 2015.

New Jersey Close to Revamping Tax Credit System

The Garden State is close to enacting a new law that would totally reshape the tax credit system for businesses. The current system has five tax incentive programs in place while the new system would only have two. This slimming down is actually better for business-they will have more opportunities to get tax credits with lower investing requirements.

More on misclassification of workers: state unemployment taxes

We've been following the issue of worker classification closely in this blog. As we discussed in our August 22 post, a new law will take effect in Texas next year regarding the consequences to employers for the wrongful misclassification of employees. 

The Cost of Taxing Foreign Income

United States citizens must pay tax to the U.S. government on income earned anywhere in the world. This comes as a surprise to some U.S. taxpayers who are confused about how the U.S. could have the right to levy taxes and acquire so much information on money that, in some cases, has no connection to the U.S. other than the fact that it is earned by a U.S. taxpayer. These same taxpayers are equally surprised to learn that the U.S. laws concerning the reporting of their income in foreign countries are very strict and the related penalties, draconian.

Main Bitcoin Trade Group Meets with Major U.S. Regulators and Law Enforcement Agencies

Last week, the main Bitcoin trade group met with multiple U.S. regulatory and law enforcement agencies to address questions and concerns they have over the role of the virtual currency in financial markets. Bitcoin has been under increased scrutiny as of late for being the most popular of virtual currencies, currencies that are not backed by any government central bank. This has allowed many criminal organizations to use the currency to funnel funds illicitly without being traced. It has also proven to be difficult to tax due to its anonymous nature.

Richmond, California's Eminent Domain Move has Tax Consequences That Could Derail the Plan

In early August, Richmond, California decided to use a highly controversial method to aid homeowners who are underwater on their mortgages: eminent domain. Eminent domain, a power reserved to the federal government in the Fifth Amendment, is the taking of property by the government for "public use" with just compensation for the one whose property is taken. The federal government has allowed states to use eminent domain and those states in turn have allowed their municipalities and counties to wield the power as well.

Tax Reform in 1986 and Tax Reform Now: What's the Difference?

Back in the early 1980s, high unemployment, severe credit issues, and high gas prices crippled the economy. Talk of major tax reform ensued in order to alleviate the growing number of problems that the U.S. faced. Sound familiar? That's because, as so far described, the scenario of the early 1980s seems very similar to what has been going on in the current economic crisis. The difference? For one, tax reform became a reality in 1986, but at least according to one article in the Wall Street Journal, it is unlikely to happen again in 2013-14.

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