IRS to restore sequestered funds (AMT only) this fiscal year to businesses affected by OMB determination

IR-2020-12, January 16, 2020

WASHINGTON – The Internal Revenue Service today announced it will return sequestered funds to businesses that were affected by a recent Office of Management and Budget (OMB) determination regarding the Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit Control Act of 1985, as amended.

The IRS will restore any amounts sequestered since 2013 under section 168(k)(4). OMB determined that the refundable corporate minimum tax credit claimed under sections 53 and 168(k)(4) of title 26, U.S. Code as in effect for taxable years beginning before Jan. 1, 2018, is not subject to sequestration.

The IRS has a complete list of all taxpayers affected so taxpayers do not need to take any action. Funds and applicable interest will be sent out during fiscal year 2020. Less than 1,000 businesses were affected by the OMB determination. Funds due a company will be used to offset current tax liabilities first.

Formerly, refund payments issued to, and credit elect and refund offset transactions for, corporations claiming refundable minimum tax credits for prior year alternative minimum tax liability were subject to sequestration. The OMB determination corrects and reverses the previous determination.

Additional information will be shared regarding the timing and process for these reimbursements when it is available.

IRS: Most taxpayers eligible for free federal and free state tax return preparation

IR-2020-13, January 16, 2020

WASHINGTON – Most taxpayers can do both their federal and state tax returns for free online through Free File offered either by the IRS or by states that have a similar public-private partnership.

For 2020, taxpayers whose prior-year adjusted gross income was $69,000 or less, and that’s most people, can use IRS Free File. Generally, taxpayers must complete their federal tax return before they can begin their state taxes.

More than 20 states also have a state Free File program patterned after federal partnership which means many taxpayers are eligible for free federal and free state online tax preparation. Those states are: Arkansas, Arizona, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, Montana, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Vermont, Virginia and West Virginia, plus the District of Columbia.

In addition, IRS Free File partners – featuring 10 brand-name online products – offer most or some state tax returns for free as well. Some may also charge so it is important for taxpayers to explore their free options.

Here’s how Free File works:

  1. Go to IRS.gov/freefile to see all Free File options.
     
  2. Browse each of the 10 offers or use a “look up” tool to help you find the right product. Each Free File partner sets its own eligibility standards generally based on income, age and state residency. But if your adjusted gross income was $69,000 or less, you will find at least one free product to use. Two products are in Spanish.
     
  3. Select a provider and follow the links to their web page to begin your tax return.
     
  4. Complete and e-File your tax return only if you have all the income and deduction records you need. The fastest way to get a refund is by filing electronically and selecting direct deposit. If you owe, use direct pay or electronic options.
     

Free File partners will charge a fee for state tax return preparation unless their offer outlines upfront that you can file both federal and state returns for free. If you want to use one of the state Free File program products, go to your state tax agency’s Free File page.

For residents of Alaska, Florida, Nevada, South Dakota, Texas, Washington and Wyoming, IRS Free File may be the only tax product you need. Those states do not have an income tax.

IRS Free File helps seniors and retirees do their taxes for free

IR-2020-10, January 15, 2020

WASHINGTON — Seniors and retirees whose income is under $69,000 a year should explore IRS Free File for free online tax preparation.

Seniors are one of the key constituents for Free File which has served 57 million taxpayers and saved them $1.7 billion since the online filing service debuted in 2003.

Free File – which features 10 brand-name tax software providers – also offers the new Form 1040-SR option for seniors over the age of 65.

“When you’re on a fixed income, every penny saved matters. With Free File, you can save lots of pennies. Free File also does all the hard work for you. It finds the right forms, benefits and does all the math,” said Ken Corbin, commissioner of IRS’ Wage and Investment division.

Free File supports all the major forms that can be filed electronically so even if your return is a bit more complex, you can still use a free service.

Here’s how Free File works:

  1. Go to IRS.gov/freefile to see all Free File options.
     
  2. Browse each of the 10 offers or use a “look up” tool to help you find the right product. Each Free File partner sets its own eligibility standards generally based on income, age and state residency. But if your adjusted gross income was $69,000 or less, you will find at least one free product to use. Two products are in Spanish.
     
  3. Select a provider and follow the links to their web page to begin your tax return.
     
  4. Complete and e-file your tax return only if you have all the income and deduction records you need. The fastest way to get a refund is by filing electronically and selecting direct deposit. If you owe, use direct pay or electronic options.

Free File providers also offer state tax return preparation, some for free and some for a fee. Again, use the “look up” tool to find the right product. Here’s another plus for Free File: you can use your smart phone or tablet to do your taxes. Just go to IRS.gov/freefile on your device. All Free File products are enabled for mobile devices.

Seniors who are not comfortable preparing their own tax return still have other free options. The IRS helps support the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program and AARP supports the Tax Counseling for the Elderly program. Volunteers will prepare your tax return for you for free. Use the VITA locator tool to find a VITA/TCE location near you.

Free File is available now through October to accommodate extension filers.

Joint Statement of Egypt, Ethiopia, Sudan, the United States and the World Bank

Washington, DC – The Ministers of Foreign Affairs and Water Resources of Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan and their delegations met with the Secretary of the Treasury and the President of the World Bank, participating as observers, in Washington, D.C. on January 13-15, 2020.  The Ministers noted the progress achieved in the four technical meetings among the Ministers of Water Resources and their two prior meetings in Washington D.C. and the outcomes of those meetings and their joint commitment to reach a comprehensive, cooperative, adaptive, sustainable, and mutually beneficial agreement on the filling and operation of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam. 

Toward that end, the Ministers noted the following points, recognizing that all points are subject to final agreement:

  1. The filling of the GERD will be executed in stages and will be undertaken in an adaptive and cooperative manner that takes into consideration the hydrological conditions of the Blue Nile and the potential impact of the filling on downstream reservoirs.
  2. Filling will take place during the wet season, generally from July to August, and will continue in September subject to certain conditions.
  3. The initial filling stage of the GERD will provide for the rapid achievement of a level of 595 meters above sea level (m.a.s.l.) and the early generation of electricity, while providing appropriate mitigation measures for Egypt and Sudan in case of severe droughts during this stage. 
  4. The subsequent stages of filling will be done according to a mechanism to be agreed that determines release based upon the hydrological conditions of the Blue Nile and the level of the GERD that addresses the filling goals of Ethiopia and provides electricity generation and appropriate mitigation measures for Egypt and Sudan during prolonged periods of dry years, drought and prolonged drought.
  5. During long term operation, the GERD will operate according to a mechanism that determines release based upon the hydrological conditions of the Blue Nile and the level of the GERD that provides electricity generation and appropriate mitigation measures for Egypt and Sudan during prolonged periods of dry years, drought and prolonged drought.
  6. An effective coordination mechanism and provisions for the settlement of disputes will be established.

The Ministers agree that there is a shared responsibility of the three countries in managing drought and prolonged drought.

The Ministers agreed to meet again in Washington, D.C. on January 28-29 to finalize a comprehensive agreement on the filling and operation of the GERD, and that there will be technical and legal discussions in the interim period.

The Ministers recognize the significant regional benefits that can result from concluding an agreement on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam with respect to transboundary cooperation, regional development and economic integration that can result from the operation of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam.  The Ministers of Foreign Affairs reaffirmed the importance of transboundary cooperation in the development of the Blue Nile to improve the lives of the people of Egypt, Ethiopia, and Sudan, and their shared commitment to concluding an agreement.

 

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IRS and Treasury issue guidance for students with discharged student loans and their creditors

IR-2020-11, January 15, 2020

WASHINGTON — The Internal Revenue Service and Department of the Treasury issued Revenue Procedure 2020-11 (PDF) that establishes a safe harbor extending relief to additional taxpayers who took out federal or private student loans to finance attendance at a nonprofit or for-profit school.

Relief is also extended to any creditor that would otherwise be required to file information returns and furnish payee statements for the discharge of any indebtedness within the scope of this revenue procedure.

The Treasury Department and the IRS have determined that it is appropriate to extend the relief provided in Rev. Proc. 2015-57, Rev. Proc. 2017-24 and Rev. Proc. 2018-39 to taxpayers who took out federal and private student loans to finance attendance at nonprofit or other for-profit schools not owned by Corinthian College, Inc. or American Career Institutes, Inc.

The Revenue Procedure provides relief when the federal loans are discharged by the Department of Education under the Closed School or Defense to Repayment discharge process, or where the private loans are discharged based on settlements of certain types of legal causes of action against nonprofit or other for-profit schools and certain private lenders.

Taxpayers within the scope of this revenue procedure will not recognize gross income as a result of the discharge, and the taxpayer should not report the amount of the discharged loan in gross income on his or her federal income tax return.

Additionally, the IRS will not assert that a creditor must file information returns and furnish payee statements for the discharge of any indebtedness within the scope of this revenue procedure. To avoid confusion, the IRS strongly recommends that these creditors not furnish students nor the IRS with a Form 1099-C.

IRS Free File helps seniors and retires do their taxes for free

IR-2020-10, January 15, 2020

WASHINGTON — Seniors and retirees whose income is under $69,000 a year should explore IRS Free File for free online tax preparation.

Seniors are one of the key constituents for Free File which has served 57 million taxpayers and saved them $1.7 billion since the online filing service debuted in 2003.

Free File – which features 10 brand-name tax software providers – also offers the new Form 1040-SR option for seniors over the age of 65.

“When you’re on a fixed income, every penny saved matters. With Free File, you can save lots of pennies. Free File also does all the hard work for you. It finds the right forms, benefits and does all the math,” said Ken Corbin, commissioner of IRS’ Wage and Investment division.

Free File supports all the major forms that can be filed electronically so even if your return is a bit more complex, you can still use a free service.

Here’s how Free File works:

  1. Go to IRS.gov/freefile to see all Free File options.
     
  2. Browse each of the 10 offers or use a “look up” tool to help you find the right product. Each Free File partner sets its own eligibility standards generally based on income, age and state residency. But if your adjusted gross income was $69,000 or less, you will find at least one free product to use. Two products are in Spanish.
     
  3. Select a provider and follow the links to their web page to begin your tax return.
     
  4. Complete and e-file your tax return only if you have all the income and deduction records you need. The fastest way to get a refund is by filing electronically and selecting direct deposit. If you owe, use direct pay or electronic options.

Free File providers also offer state tax return preparation, some for free and some for a fee. Again, use the “look up” tool to find the right product. Here’s another plus for Free File: you can use your smart phone or tablet to do your taxes. Just go to IRS.gov/freefile on your device. All Free File products are enabled for mobile devices.

Seniors who are not comfortable preparing their own tax return still have other free options. The IRS helps support the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program and AARP supports the Tax Counseling for the Elderly program. Volunteers will prepare your tax return for you for free. Use the VITA locator tool to find a VITA/TCE location near you.

Free File is available now through October to accommodate extension filers.

IRS Free File: Ideal for young and first-time filers

IR-2020-08, January 14, 2020

WASHINGTON — Filing taxes for the first time or working part-time? IRS Free File may be the perfect match for people looking to save money on federal tax preparation.

Most Free File users are under the age of 30 with modest incomes. The Free File adjusted gross income limit for 2020 is $69,000. For those who want to do their own taxes, Free File means free tax preparation, free electronic filing and free direct deposit, which is the fastest way to get a refund.

“Doing your taxes may seem a bit overwhelming, but it’s not. Free File does the hard work for you. The software finds the right forms, finds any tax benefits and does all the math,” said Ken Corbin, commissioner of the IRS’ Wage and Investment division. “Here’s a key tip: have all your income records like your Form W-2 ready before you start.”

Another plus: Free File is mobile enabled. Taxpayers can use their smart phones or tablets to do their taxes.

Free File features 10 brand-name tax software providers who are in a partnership with the IRS to offer their online products for free. Each provider sets additional eligibility requirements, generally based on age, state residency and income.

Here’s how Free File works:

  1. Go to IRS.gov/freefile to see all Free File options.
     
  2. Browse each of the 10 offers or use a “look up” tool to help you find the right product. Each Free File partner sets its own eligibility standards generally based on income, age and state residency. But if your adjusted gross income was $69,000 or less, you will find at least one free product to use. Two products are in Spanish.
     
  3. Select a provider and follow the links to their webpage to begin your tax return.
     
  4. Complete and e-file your tax return only if you have all the income and deduction records you need. The fastest way to get a refund is by filing electronically and selecting direct deposit. If you owe, use direct pay or electronic options.

If this is the first time that you’ve filed a federal tax return and you are single, here’s what you need before you start:

  • Social Security number.
     
  • Wage and income information i.e. Form W-2 or Form 1099. Remember: parts of college scholarships or grants may be taxable income.
     
  • Check with your parents to make sure they are not claiming you as a dependent. You may still file a separate tax return but if you are being claimed as a dependent by others, you cannot claim yourself as a dependent.
     
  • Documentation for all tax credits and deductions. Remember: the standard deduction has been greatly increased so that itemizing your deductions may not be necessary.
     
  • For all electronic tax returns, you must use your prior-year adjusted gross income as part of your electronic signature. If you are a first-time filer over the age of 16, simply enter 0 (zero) as your prior-year income for signature purposes. If you filed before, your prior-year tax return will show your adjusted gross income.
     
  • Bank account and routing number. If you are receiving a refund, and most people do, the fastest way to get a refund is through direct deposit to a financial account.

Free File is available now through October to accommodate extension filers.

Improved Tax Withholding Estimator helps workers target the refund they want; shows how to fill out new 2020 W-4

IRS YouTube Videos:

IR-2020-09, January 14, 2020

WASHINGTON — The Internal Revenue Service has launched a new and improved Tax Withholding Estimator, designed to help workers target the refund they want by having the right amount of federal income tax taken out of their pay.

The Tax Withholding Estimator, now available on IRS.gov, incorporates the changes from the redesigned Form W-4, Employee’s Withholding Certificate, that employees can fill out and give to their employers this year.

The IRS urges everyone to see if they need to adjust their withholding by using the Tax Withholding Estimator to perform a Paycheck Checkup. If an adjustment is needed, the Tax Withholding Estimator gives specific recommendations on how to fill out their employer’s online Form W-4 or provides the PDF form with key parts filled out.

To help workers more effectively adjust their withholding, the improved Tax Withholding Estimator features a customized refund slider that allows users to choose the refund amount they prefer from a range of different refund amounts. The exact refund range shown is customized based on the tax information entered by that user.

Based on the refund amount selected, the Tax Withholding Estimator will give the worker specific recommendations on how to fill out their W-4. This new feature allows users who seek either larger refunds at the end of the year or more money on their paychecks throughout the year to have just the right amount withheld to meet their preference.

The new Tax Withholding Estimator also features several other enhancements, including one allowing anyone who expects to receive a bonus to indicate whether tax will be withheld. In addition, improvements added last summer continue to be available, including mobile-friendly design, handling of pension income, Social Security benefits and self-employment tax.

Starting in 2020, income tax withholding is no longer based on an employee’s marital status and withholding allowances, tied to the value of the personal exemption. Instead, income tax withholding is generally based on the worker’s expected filing status and standard deduction for the year. In addition, workers can choose to have itemized deductions, the Child Tax Credit and other tax benefits reflected in their withholding for the year.

It is important for people with more than one job at a time (including families in which both spouses work) to adjust their withholding to avoid having too little withheld. Using the Tax Withholding Estimator is the most accurate way to do this. As in the past, employees can also choose to have an employer withhold an additional flat-dollar amount each pay period to cover, for example, income they receive from the gig economy, self-employment, or other sources that is not subject to withholding.

For more information about the updated Tax Withholding Estimator and the redesigned 2020 Form W-4, visit IRS.gov.

Treasury Sanctions Entities for Facilitating the Exportation of Workers from North Korea

WASHINGTON – Today, the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) announced two North Korea-related designations focusing on the Government of North Korea’s continued supply of illicit labor to overseas markets.  The Government of North Korea continues to use the illicit exportation of North Korean labor to generate income overseas in contravention of United Nations (UN) sanctions.  Today’s action targets a North Korean trading corporation and a China-based North Korean lodging facility that facilitate North Korea’s practice of sending laborers abroad.  North Korea’s continued export of North Koreans as illicit laborers is part of an ongoing attempt to undermine and evade UN Security Council Resolutions (UNSCR) 2375 and 2397; UN Member States were obligated to expel all North Korean laborers by December 22, 2019, in a manner consistent with UNSCR 2397.  Today’s action demonstrates OFAC’s continued commitment to the implementation and enforcement of U.S. and UN sanctions.

“The exportation of North Korean workers raises illicit revenue for the government of North Korea in violation of UN sanctions,” said Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin.

Korea Namgang Trading Corporation

OFAC designated North Korea’s Namgang Trading Corporation (NTC) pursuant to Executive Order 13722 (E.O. 13722) for having engaged in, facilitated, or been responsible for the exportation of workers from North Korea including exportation to generate revenue for the Government of North Korea or the Workers’ Party of Korea.  NTC was also designated today pursuant to the North Korea Sanctions and Policy Enhancement Act of 2016, as amended by the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act, (“NKSPEA”) for having knowingly, directly or indirectly, engaged in, facilitated, or been responsible for the exportation of workers from North Korea in a manner intended to generate significant revenue, directly or indirectly, for use by the Government of North Korea or by the Worker’s Party of Korea.

In 2018, NTC maintained laborers in multiple countries, including Russia, Nigeria, and numerous countries in the Middle East.  NTC is involved in the logistics cycle of exporting workers and handles North Korean personnel’s visas, passports, departures, and overseas employment.  NTC personnel then repatriate funds back to North Korea, some of which are routed directly back to the Government of North Korea.

Beijing Sukbakso

OFAC designated China-based Beijing Sukbakso pursuant to E.O. 13722 for having materially assisted, sponsored, or provided financial, material, or technological support for, or goods or services to or in support of, NTC and Namgang Construction.  OFAC also designated Sukbakso pursuant to NKSPEA for having knowingly engaged in, contributed to, assisted, sponsored, or provided financial, material or technological support for, or goods and services in support of, NTC.  Namgang Construction was designated by OFAC pursuant to E.O. 13722 on December 2, 2016 for exporting workers from North Korea to the Middle East and Asia, including exporting workers to generate revenue for the Government of North Korea or the Workers’ Party of Korea. 

Beijing Sukbakso is a China-based North Korean lodging facility that handles at least a portion of the travel and logistics for NTC personnel working overseas.  Beijing Sukbakso facilitates NTC’s exportation and repatriation of North Korean workers and likely facilitates the workers’ remittance payments back to North Korea.  For example, during the spring of 2018, NTC headquarters in North Korea coordinated the travel of North Korean workers with Beijing Sukbakso, and Beijing Sukbakso kept account balance information for NTC subordinates.

Sanctions Implications 

As a result of today’s action, all property and interest in property of these targets that are in the United States or in the possession or control of U.S. persons must be blocked and reported to OFAC.  OFAC’s regulations generally prohibit all dealings by U.S. persons or within the United States (including transactions transiting the United States) that involve any property or interests in property of blocked or designated persons.

In addition, persons that engage in certain transactions with the person designated today may themselves be exposed to designation.  Furthermore, any foreign financial institution that knowingly facilitates a significant transaction or provides significant financial services for any of the individuals designated today could be subject to U.S. secondary sanctions.

Read more information on the entities designated today.

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SKI-DOO LAUNCHES WORLD PREMIERE TECHNOLOGY WITH THE ALL-NEW SUMMIT 850 E-TEC TURBO

Ski Doo

BRP introduces all-new Ski-Doo Summit 850 E-TEC Turbo snowmobile. ©BRP 2020

Valcourt, Quebec, January 13, 2020 – BRP (TSX:DOO; NASDAQ:DOOO) is launching the world’s first factory turbocharged two-stroke engine with an all-new Ski-Doo Summit 850 E-TEC Turbo snowmobile[1]. Designed from the rider down, this sled redefines mountain riding and demonstrates the brand’s obsession with providing the best possible riding experience. With its innovative new turbo technology, the Summit 850 E-TEC Turbo delivers impressive power constantly – without any loss – at altitudes of up to 8,000 feet (2,400 metres), something never before accomplished on a two-stroke factory sled.

Once again, Ski-Doo leveraged its deep connection with riders to deliver the next-level experience on the mountain. The Summit 850 E-TEC Turbo engine provides the performance riders are expecting without the costs and pains of aftermarket installations. Years of research and development went into optimizing the technology, which is a reflection of BRP’s commitment to cutting-edge innovation and performance aimed at improving the rider experience.

Riders will enjoy power, ease of use and peace of mind like never before. Deep-snow lovers will reach higher playgrounds more easily for incredible powder runs. And riders on technical terrain will have the extra power they need to traverse slopes and weave through tight trees as they challenge themselves and push their skills. All this, while climbing past the competition.

An Industry-First Technology                             

Turbos have intrigued the mountain snowmobiling crowd for years, but the hassle and costs of aftermarket installations, calibration, special fuel, maintenance, and elimination of the factory warranty have prevented most from modifying their sled. Designed and built by Rotax, the 850 E-TEC Turbo engine eliminates those concerns and delivers a powerful, seamless riding experience with a limited factory warranty, virtually no turbo lag, and impressive throttle response.

More than just an engine, the Rotax 850 E-TEC Turbo integrates seamlessly in the REV-Gen4 platform to retain the lightweight balanced handling and perfect drivetrain calibration that riders expect from Ski-Doo Summit snowmobiles.

And BRP’s complete lineup of two-stroke E-TEC engines use cleaner, direct-injection technology. They produce less hydrocarbon and carbon monoxide emissions than carbureted engine.

The Summit 850 E-TEC Turbo is available this week at authorized Ski-Doo dealerships for delivery across North America. For more information, visit www.SkiDoo.com.

About BRP

We are a global leader in the world of powersports vehicles, propulsion systems and boats built on over 75 years of ingenuity and intensive consumer focus. Our portfolio of industry-leading and distinctive products includes Ski-Doo and Lynx snowmobiles, Sea-Doo watercraft, Can-Am on- and off-road vehicles, Alumacraft, Manitou, Quintrex, Stacer and Savage boats, Evinrude and Rotax marine propulsion systems as well as Rotax engines for karts, motorcycles and recreational aircraft. We complete our lines of products with a dedicated parts, accessories and clothing lineup to fully enhance the riding experience. With annual sales of CA$5.2 billion from over 120 countries, our global workforce is made up of more than 13,000 driven, resourceful people.

www.brp.com

@BRPNews

Ski-Doo, Lynx, Sea-Doo, Can-Am, Rotax, Evinrude, Manitou, Alumacraft, Quintrex, Stacer, Savage and the BRP logo are trademarks of Bombardier Recreational Products Inc. or its affiliates. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

For information:

Steve Cowing                                                              Brian Manning

Media Relations and PR Manager, Ski-Doo                Lead, Global Consumer Public Relations

Tel: 651-755-2520                                                       Tel: 913-424-9709

[email protected]                                              [email protected]

[1] Based on internal research.