Congress has passed a variety of tax provisions so far in 2015
Before leaving for its August recess, Congress passed a three-month extension of funding for the Highway Trust Fund, funding which was set to expire on July 31, 2015. The legislation includes several tax-related provisions. Congress had also passed a variety of other tax provisions during the year. Still on the table are the most significant pieces of tax legislation that Congress has been working on this year: international tax reform and an extension of expiring provisions. The following is a list of what Congress has managed to accomplish so far.
Perhaps the change that will affect the largest number of tax practitioners is a change in the due dates for certain tax and information returns. While a game-changer for many return preparers’ workflow, most deadlines do not shift under the new law until returns due in 2017. Partnership information returns will be due on or before the fifteenth day of the third month following the close of the fiscal year, or March 15 for calendar-year entities. For corporate tax returns, the due date shifts from the fifteenth day of the third month to the fifteenth day of the fourth month, or April 15 for calendar year taxpayers. For partnerships, the maximum filing extension is for six months, to September 15 for calendar-year taxpayers. For corporations, the maximum extension is six months, or seven months for June 30 year-end corporations through 2025. The changes are generally effective for returns for tax years beginning after Dec. 31, 2015, so the changes will not affect the 2015 tax returns of calendar-year taxpayers.
Taxpayers with foreign accounts who have had a June 30 FBAR deadline will now be required to file FinCen Report 114 by April 15, although a new six-month extension is also provided. A penalty waiver may also be available for first-time filers who fail to request an extension. The due date for Form 3520, for reporting transactions with foreign trusts and receipt of certain foreign gifts, becomes April 15 for calendar-year taxpayers, with a maximum six-month extension. The due date for Form 3520-A with respect to foreign trusts with a U.S. owner will become the fifteenth day of the third month after the close of the trust’s tax year, with a maximum six-month extension. The maximum extension for return of trusts filing Form 1041 is a five-and-a-half-month period, to September 30 for calendar-year taxpayers. Read more on Accounting Today.