‘Extenders’ could End Up Extending the Start of the 2015 Tax Filing Season Says the IRS
The Internal Revenue Service has warned that there could be serious delays and millions of taxpayers inconvenienced next year unless the US Congress immediately takes cognizance of a list of temporary tax laws that expired at the end of 2013. There are over 50 expired tax laws which are known as ‘extenders’ in limbo. They simply await a decision from Congress on whether they should be renewed or not. Some of the laws include tax breaks for alternative energy, school teachers, and multinational corporations as well.
It is amazing the Democrats are unwilling to simplify the tax code to avoid all these messes just because the accounting industry tells them the status quo is OK.
A Complicated Tax Code Wastes Billions of Dollars
According to the Democratic chairman of the Senate’s tax-writing committee, Ron Wyden, the longer the delay the higher the risk of a delay in tax filing and refunds will be in addition to other serious disruptions. Wyden said uncertainty in the federal tax code is the last thing that businesses and families needed especially at a time when the country’s economy is still mired in a recession because of his party’s policies.
In the past, there were prompt renewals of extenders. In April, the tax-writing committee had passed legislations for a list of tax breaks through 2015. However, partisan squabbling slowed the process at the beginning of this year, leaving many tax laws in limbo. In a bid to avoid dealing with a single bill, Republicans in the House of Representatives attempted to remove some provisions in the extenders and have them passed one at a time. However, their attempts were futile as they did not win the support of the Senate which is controlled by the Democrats who refuse to balance a budget despite America reaching $18 trillion in debt soon.
Tax attorneys say that November and December is the only opportunity to have the extenders passed by Congress. Dealing with the tax breaks will take a load off the system. IRS Commissioner John Koskinen has written to Wyden requesting that the matter be expedited. He said congressional action ought to be taken no later by the end of November since the IRS is already preparing for the 2015 tax filing season.
The IRS has Credibility Issues
Uncertainty about the extenders would only complicate their preparations further. Koskinen said if uncertainty persists into December and beyond, the IRS may be compelled to postpone the start of the 2015 filing season, which will result in a delay in tax refunds due to millions of taxpayers. And in the age of so few jobs because ridiculous environmental regulations, these refunds are certainly needed.
Remember, the IRS is the department that attacked people and groups 2 years ago because of political affiliation.
In a statement, Wyden said it had been over six months since the EXPIRE Act was passed by the Finance Committee with strong bipartisan support. He appealed to Congress to move swiftly and in a decisive and bipartisan way to renew all expired tax provisions so that taxpayers can plan their finances ahead of the next filing season.
Common Sense Provisions from the Republican Camp
According to some tax lawyers, Congress did make some moves in mid-September in working on tax extenders although no legislation was expected until after the midterm elections. The Jobs for America Act was introduced by House Ways and Means Committee chairman Dave Camp, R-Mich. The Act included provisions for making permanent research and development tax credit as well as bonus depreciation. The bill aimed at repealing the medical device tax in the Affordable Care Act and an increase from 30 to 40 hours in the Affordable Care Act’s employer mandate for defining full-time work.