1.  Sign up for the IRS Nationwide Tax Forum in Chicago

Join tax professionals from across the country Aug. 21-23 at the Hyatt Regency McCormick Place in Chicago. Three days of the latest tax law information, networking opportunities and exhibits of the newest products and services to improve your business are all right around the corner.

Late registration begins Aug. 14 at 6 p.m. EDT. Register now and earn up to 18 CPE credits.

For more information or to register, please visit the IRS Nationwide Tax Forum website.

  1. Notice 2012-52: Charitable contributions to domestic disregarded entities

This notice provides guidance on the deductibility of contributions to domestic single-member limited liability companies that are wholly owned and controlled by organizations described in § 170(c)(2) of the Internal Revenue Code (U.S. charities) and for federal tax purposes are disregarded as entities separate from their owners under § 301.7701-2(c)(2)(i) of the Procedure and Administration Regulations.

  1. PTIN system improved

The Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN) system now sports new features.

Highlights include:

  • New look and feel, including enhanced log-in page
  • Consolidation of main menu and PTIN menu
  • Pop-up help messages
  • Better instructions for required format in numerical fields (including an immediate error message for wrong format)
  • Redesigned address entry screen (including copy from feature and a zip code lookup feature)
  • Improved ability to review/edit a summary of all info before submitting
  • Streamlined data entry for supervisor PTIN and professional credential data

More enhancements are planned when the PTIN renewal season begins in mid-October.

  1. RPO and OPR delegation orders available#

The delegation orders for the Return Preparer Office and the Office of Professional Responsibility are now available.

  1. New pub for conduit issues of tax-exempt bonds

The IRS released the new Publication 5005, Your Responsibilities as a Conduit Issuer of Tax-Exempt Bonds. This publication provides an overview for state and local governments of the responsibilities of the conduit issuer with respect to tax compliance in municipal financing arrangements commonly known as conduit financings.

This publication is based on the recommendations of the TE/GE Advisory Committee, also known as the ACT.

For more information about the above item or if you have other tax-exempt bonds questions, go to Tax Exempt Bond Community on IRS.gov.

  1. IRS can help when starting a  small business

July 30, 2012 – IRS Summertime Tax Tip 2012-11

If you are opening a new business this summer, the IRS has some basic federal tax information to help you get started. (Much of this advice will be helpful to those starting a new nonprofit organizations as well).

Here are some things to consider when starting a business:

  • Type of Business: One of the first decisions you need to make is what type of business you are going to establish. The most common types of businesses are sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, S corporation, and Limited Liability Company. The type of business you establish determines which tax forms you will need to file.
  • Types of Taxes:The type of business you operate also determines what types of taxes you will pay and how you will pay them. The four general types of business taxes are income tax, self-employment tax, employment tax and excise tax.
  • Employer Identification Number:A business typically needs to get an Employer Identification Number to use as an identifier for tax purposes. Check IRS.gov to find out whether you will need this number, and, if so, you can apply for an EIN online.
  • Recordkeeping:Good records will help you keep track of deductible expenses, prepare your tax returns and support items that you report on your tax returns. Good records will also help you monitor the progress of your business and prepare your financial statements. You may choose any recordkeeping system that clearly shows your income and expenses.
  • Tax Year:Every business taxpayer must figure taxable income on an annual basis called a tax year. Your tax year can be either a calendar year or a fiscal year.
  • Accounting Method: Each taxpayer must also use a consistent accounting method, which is a set of rules for determining when to report income and expenses. The most commonly used accounting methods are the cash method and accrual method. Under the cash method, you generally report income in the tax year you receive it and deduct expenses in the tax year you pay them. Under an accrual method, you generally report income in the tax year you earn it and deduct expenses in the tax year you incur them.

Visit the IRS.gov website and click on the ‘Businesses’ tab for more information and resources, including a special section on starting a business. Publication 583, Starting a Business and Keeping Records, can also help new business owners understand their federal tax responsibilities. The publication is also available on IRS.gov or by calling 800-TAX-FORM (800-829-3676).