by Noel Bagwell
for Executive Legal Professionals, PLLC

March 24, 2015

A Moving Target In A Perfect Storm

This might be the worst year in thirty years for filing your taxes, according to Internal Revenue Service Commissioner John Koskinen. Considering Congress’s last-minute extension of many tax credits and deductions, new Obamacare tax rules, and an IRS budget slashed by a still-challenged U.S. economy, it’s looking like a perfect tax storm may hit in April.

“Phone service could plummet to 53%,”

[Koskinen] told an audience of tax practitioners at the AICPA National Tax Conference in Washington, D.C. … That would be down from an already unacceptable 72% during the 2014 filing season. The average hold time projection: 34 minutes! What’s to blame? Budget woes. “All we can do is try to maximize our services as well as we can; as well as we can is still going to be miserable. You really do get what you pay for,” he said. Koskinen’s remarks followed National Taxpayer Advocate Nina Olson who was even gloomier:“The filing season is going to be the worst filing season since I’ve been the National Taxpayer Advocate {in 2001}; I’d love to be proved wrong, but I think it will rival the 1985 filing season when returns disappeared.” (Ebeling, 2014)

What To Do: Meaningful Tax Reform & A Balanced Budget Amendment

For years, the proponents of the FairTax have been building support for a tax reform proposal which would replace the Progressive Federal Income Tax with a new federal sales tax, completely eliminating the need for the Internal Revenue Service (I.R.S.). (“How FAIRtax Works”, 2009) While replacing the Progressive Federal Income Tax with the FairTax is a great step, it is not a panacea.

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The FairTax is best for America when paired with a federal Balanced Budget Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. “Simply put, a balanced budget amendment would limit the spending of the federal government to be equal or less than the revenue it collects each year.” (“About Americans for a Balanced Budget Amendment”, 2009)

Americans–especially small business owners, start-up investors, and entrepreneurs–need to get involved with organizations like Americans for Fair Taxation and Americans for a Balanced Budget Amendment. Through these organizations and through direct lobbying of their congressmen and senators, taxpayers need to express to their elected representatives in Washington how important to them are the issues of tax reform and a balanced budget amendment. By spreading the word about these organizations and the important issues they are trying to affect, we are taking an active, participatory role in government.

If taxpayers continue to do nothing, we can expect more of the same. Unless we tie the government’s hands, it will continue stealing from us.

Citations

Ebeling, A. (2014, November 4). IRS Commissioner Predicts Miserable 2015 Tax Filing Season. Retrieved March 21, 2015, from http://www.forbes.com/sites/ashleaebeling/2014/11/04/irs-commissioner-predicts-miserable-2015-tax-filing-season/

How FAIRtax Works. (2009, March 14). Retrieved March 21, 2015, from https://fairtax.org/about/how-fairtax-works

About Americans for a Balanced Budget Amendment. (2009, January 7). Retrieved March 21, 2015, from http://www.balanceourbudget.com/about#More


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