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What you should know if your job is part of the 'shared economy'

When people think about employment and paying taxes, they often think payroll taxes and other types of taxes deducted from a worker's salary by an employer. This would certainly be a pretty good representation for people who work a regular job for a traditional employer.

However, this is not necessarily the way people -- or the economy -- work anymore. Today, there are people all across Atlanta who take part in what some call the "sharing economy." And with the new jobs that have developed in this shared economy comes some new problems for employers and employees when it comes to estimating and paying taxes.

What's the big deal with audits?

Tax audits have been making headlines in recent week in light of the presidential debates. For instance, people have been discussing candidate Donald Trump's explanation that he cannot release his tax returns because he is currently being audited. This has led to people talking about audits and what they mean, even now when people are generally not thinking about their own tax returns.

Discussing the topic of audits usually brings a groan or anxious sigh from people. They know that audits can be unpleasant, but some don't understand what this process actually is, why it is preferable to avoid one and what an audit can tell us. In this post, we will discuss some of these basic details of an audit.

Taking responsibility for tax mistakes someone else makes

Filing your own taxes can be fairly simple for some people. For others who have complicated employment tax structures, multiple incomes sources, investments, properties, significant deductions and/or businesses to report, it can be all but impossible to do their own taxes.

Hiring someone to do your taxes for you is something that people all across Atlanta choose to do. However, it is important to understand that even if you delegate this responsibility to someone else, you will still be responsible for paying any taxes that went unpaid, even if it wasn't your fault.

If I file bankruptcy, will my tax debts be discharged?

These days, millions of Americans are struggling with debt, from credit card debt to mounting medical bills. This debt can grow very quickly and make it all but impossible to keep up with regular payments, which leads to penalties which only makes the situation worse. Under these circumstances, many people consider filing for bankruptcy protection.

However, if your debt involves tax debt, you should know that it might not always be discharged like other debts in bankruptcy. Whether this debt is discharged or must be repaid depends on a number of factors, including the type of bankruptcy you file.

Does the IRS ever offer relief from penalties?

People often assume federal agencies like the IRS are ruthless and impossible to deal with when and if an issue arises. However, while it can undoubtedly be frustrating to figure out problems with the IRS, it is not impossible, particularly if you know your rights and legal options.

For instance, did you know that you might be able to avoid or seek relief from certain penalties? Under a handful of specific circumstances, the IRS can grant penalty relief.

Divorce and taxes

Getting divorced is one of the most significant and stressful events a person can go through. Unfortunately, it also has a considerable impact on another stressful event: filing your taxes.

If you recently got divorced or plan to get divorced between now and the end of the year, you will need to keep in mind the fact that come next April, your tax filing situation will be quite different. As detailed in this article on the IRS website, there are a few big changes in particular you can anticipate.

Handling taxes for a loved one's estate? Don't panic

If you have recently been appointed as the estate administrator for a deceased loved one, you may be required to file one or more tax returns in addition to managing the decedent's assets, paying off debts and distributing any assets that remain to beneficiaries. This process can be complicated, but hiring an experienced tax attorney can keep it flowing smoothly, leaving you free to complete other tasks requested of you. Your lawyer will help you stay organized and make sure you file the proper paperwork every step of the way.

Determine the decedent's assets, debts and beneficiaries

Once you receive the letters testamentary authorizing you to act on the decedent's behalf, you can begin gathering the data needed to determine the value of assets and whether any debts are owed to creditors. All creditors will need to file a creditor claim to be recognized as having a legitimate request for a portion of the estate. If you have any reason to believe the decedent had incurred a debt to the IRS, you may need to specifically request that the IRS file a claim as well.

IRS doesn't like Facebook's valuation of assets transferred

Tax strategies among huge corporations are incredibly complicated. Not only do they need to be concerned about employment taxes for hundreds and thousands of employees, but they also focus on minimizing their own tax obligations in transactions like sales, purchases and operations.

The various methods of tax payments and savings can have a huge impact on a corporation's financial bottom line, but there are some occasions when these strategies come under scrutiny by the IRS.

The difference intent makes when you have unpaid taxes

Failure to pay taxes is a situation that government agencies take very seriously. If there are suspicious returns, incorrect records or missing documents in regards to your return, it may not be long until the IRS comes calling.

While this can undoubtedly be a frightening situation, it is crucial that you do not act out of fear or without first understanding your legal options. These options will vary based on the allegations against you, including whether a mistake is believed to be intentional or accidental.

Conservation easements and what they can do for your taxes

Donald Trump is undoubtedly a polarizing figure, particularly these days when you can't go a day without reading a story about him running for office. Regardless of your feelings of Trump as a politician and presidential candidate, he is an established -- albeit controversial -- businessperson from whom other business owners can learn various lessons.

For instance, if you run a business and/or own property in Atlanta, you may be thinking of doing what Trump has done multiple times to take advantage of certain tax breaks. You may decide to use conservation easements to claim deductions.

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Located in Atlanta, The Peck Group, LC, represents clients nationwide. Regionally, we are committed to serving clients in Fulton County and throughout the state of Georgia.