Edition 77 Archives - Think Outside the Tax Box

Edition 77

By Timalyn Bowens, EA

An Overview of Health Reimbursement Arrangements

Life is the best teacher, especially in the tax industry. You can take all the continuing education that your heart desires, but sometimes the information doesn’t seem to really click until you have hands-on experience. That’s how it was for me when it came to Health Reimbursement Arrangements (HRAs). I learned about them in school. I even remember learning about them at the first accounting firm I worked at. But it wasn’t until I was working with a small business owner with his own “insurance” that I got it.


Revolutionizing Client Engagement: The Shift from EPTI to PAVER in Tax Reporting with Generative AI

Are you seeking innovative strategies to elevate your client reporting processes? Wondering how to transition from traditional methods to more engaging and personalized interactions? The emergence of generative AI has instigated a profound transformation in the domain of client communication for tax planners, shifting from the conventional Email, PDF, Telephone, In-person (EPTI) reporting techniques to a more advanced PAVER framework. Read on to find out more!

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Hobby Loss Developments in 2023

The laws of tax planning that I developed over my writing career that will be expounded in the upcoming Reilly’s Laws of Tax Planning, published by Think Outside the Tax Box, lean a little on the conservative side, as tax planners use the term – conservative versus aggressive, not conservative versus liberal. This results, in large part, from their primary source being court decisions. The 18th law stands out from the others in this regard. “Honest objective trumps realistic expectation” encourages practitioners to be somewhat more aggressive in claiming losses from activities that seem a little dubious . I still hold that view, even though there have been no encouraging developments in 2023. Here is a roundup on the action last year through December 2, 2023.

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Crypto Gains and Tax Court Games: Exploring the “Unclean Hands” Defense

Baseball, apple pie, and finding creative ways to pay fewer taxes, is there anything more American? Judge Learned Hand famously said in 1934, “Any one may so arrange his affairs that his taxes shall be as low as possible; he is not bound to choose that pattern which will best pay the Treasury; there is not even a patriotic duty to increase one’s taxes.” Since the inception of the Federal Income Tax, taxpayers have looked for increasingly creative ways to avoid it. This exploration is no different: A taxpayer attempts to wash his hands of his tax liability all together.

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February was Discovery Month at Tax Court. The high-deficiency, high-profile conservation easement cases coming from IRS crackdown put a premium on the old continuing legal education staple "win your case at discovery." But it doesn't go so well for shotgun demands, nor for broad-spectrum claims of privilege. Of course, more was resolved than just discovery disputes, but I'll get to those.

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