e-News for Tax Professionals Issue 2017-36

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e-News for Tax Professionals September 8, 2017

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Issue Number:  2017-36

Inside This Issue


  1. Be Prepared: With Irma Threatening, IRS Offers Advice to Tax Pros
  2. Tax Relief Available to Hurricane Harvey Victims
  3. Reminder: e-Services Outage
  4. IRS Announces Five New Members for the Electronic Tax Administration Advisory Committee
  5. Don't Take the Bait: Make Data Security an Everyday Priority; Key Steps Can Help
  6. IRS Provides Penalty Relief for Partnerships that Filed Late Returns in 2017
  7. Technical Guidance

 


1.  Be Prepared: As Hurricane Irma Threatens, IRS Offers Advice to Tax Pros

As Hurricane Irma approaches, the IRS is closely monitoring the storm and will be assessing next steps that will be needed for areas declared a federal disaster area. The IRS urges tax professionals to prepare for hurricanes and other disasters by keeping electronic copies of key records and documenting valuables. Learn more about how to prepare for a disaster and what to do in the aftermath on IRS.gov.

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2.  Tax Relief Available to Hurricane Harvey Victims

The IRS is providing tax relief to victims of Hurricane Harvey. Check www.irs.gov/hurricaneharvey for the latest updates.

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3.  Reminder: e-Services Outage

E-Services will be unavailable this weekend. TIN Matching and the Transcript Delivery System come back online at 6 a.m. ET on Monday, Sept. 11. For the availability of other e-Services tools, see Important Update about Your e-Services Account.

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4.  IRS Announces Five New Members for the Electronic Tax Administration Advisory Committee

The Internal Revenue Service announced the selection this week of five new members for the Electronic Tax Administration Advisory Committee (ETAAC).

The ETAAC provides an organized public forum for discussion of electronic tax administration issues, including the prevention of identity theft and refund fraud. ETAAC members work closely with the Security Summit, a joint effort of the IRS, state tax administrators and the tax software industry to fight identity theft and refund fraud.

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5.  Don't Take the Bait: Make Data Security an Everyday Priority; Key Steps Can Help

The IRS, state tax agencies and the tax industry urge tax professionals to make data security an everyday priority, noting a few simple steps can go far in protecting taxpayer information from cybercriminals. 

Cybersecurity experts often refer to the 90/10 rule, which states 10% of cybersecurity is reliant upon technology while 90 percent is up to users. The IRS currently is receiving reports of tax professional data breaches at the rate of three to five a week. 

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6.  IRS Provides Penalty Relief for Partnerships that Filed Late Returns in 2017

The IRS issued guidance this week providing penalty relief for certain partnerships that did not file the required returns by the new due date for tax years beginning in 2016. Partnerships file Form 1065 or Form 1065-B or request an automatic extension by filing Form 7004.

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7.  Technical Guidance 

Revenue Procedure 2017-47 provides a safe harbor concerning inadvertent or unintentional uses of a practice or procedure that is inconsistent with section 50(d)(2) and 168(i)(9), which require the use of the Normalization Rules.

Notice 2017-48 provides guidance for income and employment tax purposes on the treatment of cash payments made by employers under leave-based donation programs for the relief of victims of Hurricane Harvey and Tropical Storm Harvey.

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