Tax Update: February 2017

At Insero, we make it our business to stay abreast of the latest trends and technical updates in accounting, tax, and audit; and we understand how important timely updates are to our clients. As a member of the RSM US Alliance, we also have the benefit of access to the resources and subject matter experts of RSM US LLP (formerly known as McGladrey LLP). This includes regular updates on the latest federal, state, and international tax news. We hope that you find these informative and useful, and invite you to reach out to us if you have any questions.

Border Adjusted Tax proposals may impact exporters and importers
A new destination-based tax regime may be part of comprehensive tax overhaul, but details remain unclear.
Read more

New revenue recognition guidance is looming
Even though the tax rules have not changed, a change in book recognition could create a change in the tax method of accounting.
Read more

Employee stock ownership from three perspectives (video)
Employee stock ownership plans can be attractive to business owners, employees and companies overall. Anne Bushman discusses the benefits.
Watch now

Final rules require 5472s from foreign-owned disregarded entities
Read more

Capitol Hill

Source: RSM US LLP
Used with permission as a member of the RSM US Alliance
http://rsmus.com/our-insights/newsletters/tax-digest.html

Disclaimer

As always, we hope you enjoy this edition of our newsletter and we look forward to receiving your feedback. Should you have any questions regarding the information contained in the attached materials or our service offerings, please contact us directly.

Audit & Accounting Update: February 9, 2017

At Insero, we make it our business to stay abreast of the latest trends and technical updates in accounting, tax, and audit and we understand how important timely updates are to our clients. As a member of the RSM US Alliance, we also have the benefit of access to the resources and subject matter experts of RSM US LLP (formerly known as McGladrey LLP). This includes regular updates on the latest financial reporting insights. We hope that you find these informative and useful, and invite you to reach out to us if you have any questions.

Updates to revenue recognition resources for ASU 2016-20
We have updated our revenue recognition resources to reflect the changes made by Accounting Standards Update 2016-20.
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Are you sure you know when the revenue guidance in ASC 606 is effective?
Our article discusses certain factors to be carefully considered in determining when ASC 606 is effective for you.
Read more

New credit losses standard in a nutshell
Our summary provides brief answers to certain key questions regarding the FASB’s new standard on credit losses.
Read more

Valuing management incentive units
Our whitepaper discusses various issues related to the valuation of and accounting for management incentive units.
Read more

FASB simplifies the test for goodwill impairment
The FASB has simplified how an entity is required to test goodwill for impairment by eliminating Step 2 from the goodwill impairment test.
Read more

Accounting ramifications related to centrally cleared derivatives
A change in the legal characterization of margin payments has accounting and disclosure ramifications for impacted entities.
Read more

FASB’s ongoing efforts to simplify hedge accounting
The FASB recently met to discuss feedback received on proposed targeted improvements to simplify hedge accounting.
Read more

Audit and Accounting Updates for Business Owners and Financial Professionals

Source: RSM US LLP
Used with permission as a member of the RSM US Alliance
http://rsmus.com/our-insights/newsletters/financial-reporting-insights.html

As always, we hope you enjoy this edition of our newsletter and we look forward to receiving your feedback. Should you have any questions regarding the information contained in the attached materials or our service offerings, please contact us directly.

Tax Update: January 2017

At Insero, we make it our business to stay abreast of the latest trends and technical updates in accounting, tax, and audit; and we understand how important timely updates are to our clients. As a member of the RSM US Alliance, we also have the benefit of access to the resources and subject matter experts of RSM US LLP (formerly known as McGladrey LLP). This includes regular updates on the latest federal, state, and international tax news. We hope that you find these informative and useful, and invite you to reach out to us if you have any questions.

Will 2017 be the year to extend your 2016 tax return?
This filing season brings many changes and unknowns that may cause taxpayers to revisit the question of filing an extension.
Businesses expanding or increasing activity in their current state or in new states should consider the benefits of state tax credits.
In light of a Trump presidency, what should business owners consider when planning their business sale?

Capitol Hill

Source: RSM US LLP
Used with permission as a member of the RSM US Alliance
http://rsmus.com/our-insights/newsletters/tax-digest.html

Disclaimer

As always, we hope you enjoy this edition of our newsletter and we look forward to receiving your feedback. Should you have any questions regarding the information contained in the attached materials or our service offerings, please contact us directly.

Audit & Accounting Update: January 26, 2017

At Insero, we make it our business to stay abreast of the latest trends and technical updates in accounting, tax, and audit and we understand how important timely updates are to our clients. As a member of the RSM US Alliance, we also have the benefit of access to the resources and subject matter experts of RSM US LLP (formerly known as McGladrey LLP). This includes regular updates on the latest financial reporting insights. We hope that you find these informative and useful, and invite you to reach out to us if you have any questions.

Changes to revenue recognition in the technology industry 
Our white paper discusses how certain issues will significantly affect revenue recognition in the technology industry.
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Clarifications to definition of a business
The FASB recently issued clarifications to the definition of a business, which affects many areas of accounting.
Read more

Consolidation of for-profit limited partnership by not-for-profit entity
ASU 2017-02 clarifies when a not-for-profit entity that is a general partner should consolidate a for-profit limited partnership.
Read more

Proposal: Balance sheet classification of debt
A recent proposed ASU introduces an overarching principle for determining whether debt should be classified as current or noncurrent.
Read more

Proposed changes to disclosure requirements for inventory
If finalized, recent proposed amendments to FASB ASC Topic 330 would require additional inventory disclosures.
Read more

FASB makes additional corrections to new revenue guidance
A recent FASB Accounting Standards Update makes technical corrections to ASC Topic 606, Revenue from Contracts with Customers.
Read more

Tool for audit committees: Preparing for the revenue recognition standard
A new Center for Audit Quality tool aims to help audit committees assess a company’s implementation of the new revenue recognition standard.
Read more

 

Audit and Accounting Updates for Business Owners and Financial Professionals

Source: RSM US LLP
Used with permission as a member of the RSM US Alliance
http://rsmus.com/our-insights/newsletters/financial-reporting-insights.html

As always, we hope you enjoy this edition of our newsletter and we look forward to receiving your feedback. Should you have any questions regarding the information contained in the attached materials or our service offerings, please contact us directly.

Audit & Accounting Update: December 29, 2016

At Insero, we make it our business to stay abreast of the latest trends and technical updates in accounting, tax, and audit and we understand how important timely updates are to our clients. As a member of the RSM US Alliance, we also have the benefit of access to the resources and subject matter experts of RSM US LLP (formerly known as McGladrey LLP). This includes regular updates on the latest financial reporting insights. We hope that you find these informative and useful, and invite you to reach out to us if you have any questions.

Changes to revenue recognition for business and professional services
Our recent summary discusses how service providers will be affected by the FASB’s new revenue recognition guidance.
Read more

FASB addresses down round features and indefinite deferral provisions
A new FASB proposal addresses some of the accounting complexity associated with instruments with characteristics of liabilities and equity.
Read more

Non-GAAP financial measures: Continuing the conversation
A recent Center for Audit Quality paper provides information for stakeholders to consider regarding non-GAAP financial measures.
Read more

Audit and Accounting Updates for Business Owners and Financial Professionals

Source: RSM US LLP
Used with permission as a member of the RSM US Alliance
http://rsmus.com/our-insights/newsletters/financial-reporting-insights.html

As always, we hope you enjoy this edition of our newsletter and we look forward to receiving your feedback. Should you have any questions regarding the information contained in the attached materials or our service offerings, please contact us directly.

Tax Update: December 2016

At Insero, we make it our business to stay abreast of the latest trends and technical updates in accounting, tax, and audit; and we understand how important timely updates are to our clients. As a member of the RSM US Alliance, we also have the benefit of access to the resources and subject matter experts of RSM US LLP (formerly known as McGladrey LLP). This includes regular updates on the latest federal, state, and international tax news. We hope that you find these informative and useful, and invite you to reach out to us if you have any questions.

Special Report
On the horizon: Tax reform
Expecting tax reform to become a reality, companies and individuals may want to take action before 2016 ends.
Read more

Revised Form I-9 Required in January 2017
Changes to the form are intended to help employers reduce technical errors and facilitate electronic completion.
Read more

Tax reform likely to occur next year
Expect tax reform to be a central focus of the new Congress and new administration in early 2017.
Read more

US Treasury’s much-anticipated debt-equity regulations
New debt-equity regulations provide documentation requirements and equity recharacterization rules. How could your business be affected?
Read more

2016 year-end state and local tax considerations
Understand legislative changes that may affect your 2016 state and local tax compliance and 2017 planning.
Download the guide

Economic and market outlooks
The middle market is an oft-overlooked part of the US economic engine. Our economic and investment insights put these trends into perspective.
Read more

Business succession financial planning and wealth Preservation
Read more

State tax claim filings: Check and check again
Read more

Is there a better way to international tax reform?
Read more

Clarification on reporting for building rehabilitation expenses
Read more

8 corporate and M&A tax considerations for year-end planning
Read more

Capitol Hill

Source: RSM US LLP
Used with permission as a member of the RSM US Alliance
http://rsmus.com/our-insights/newsletters/tax-digest.html

Disclaimer

As always, we hope you enjoy this edition of our newsletter and we look forward to receiving your feedback. Should you have any questions regarding the information contained in the attached materials or our service offerings, please contact us directly.

Tax & Business Letter: Winter 2016

This issue’s topics include:

  • Hiring for the holidays? Pay attention to your Affordable Care Act responsibilities
  • Keep your business healthy with a comprehensive annual checkup
  • Are you making the most of your vehicle expense deductions?
  • Get your finances in shape for 2017
  • Use this free tool to proactively monitor your credit
  • This tax break offers benefits and surprises

Capture

Click Here to Download

(more…)

Tax Update: November 2016

At Insero, we make it our business to stay abreast of the latest trends and technical updates in accounting, tax, and audit; and we understand how important timely updates are to our clients. As a member of the RSM US Alliance, we also have the benefit of access to the resources and subject matter experts of RSM US LLP (formerly known as McGladrey LLP). This includes regular updates on the latest federal, state, and international tax news. We hope that you find these informative and useful, and invite you to reach out to us if you have any questions.

4 tax issues driven by organic growth
Taxation of internally-generated profits can vary. Capital investments in new products, services or facilities can create tax opportunity or risk.
Read more

Managing your personal wealth after leaving a closely held business
Business succession financial planning requires introspection. You must quantify core capital needs and define estate and charitable goals.
Read more

US Supreme Court to hear Delaware unclaimed property check dispute
Twenty-three states challenge the escheat of MoneyGram official checks, claiming instruments should have escheated to state of purchase.
Read more

FATCA and other year-end global information reporting considerations
Read these tips for internationally active taxpayers on FATCA classifications, preparation for CRS reporting and more.
Read more

Business succession planning: Why it is critical to revisit your plan now
The ins and outs of estate planning strategies and key provisions of the proposed regulations to section 2704 and how to prepare.
Read more

Current issues and opportunities for ESOP companies
The ESOP community remains vibrant with maturing ESOPs and many beginning to explore the possibility.
Read more

6 steps to solving the country-by-country reporting challenge
Learn a straightforward six-step process to help U.S. multinationals address new IRS country-by-country reporting requirements.
Read more

Draft remote seller legislation provides unique federal solution
Read more

Review your tax technology now to avoid headaches tomorrow
Read more

Follow new guidance when correcting qualified retirement plan errors
Read more

Apple’s influence on international tax policy
Read more

Capitol Hill

Source: RSM US LLP
Used with permission as a member of the RSM US Alliance
http://rsmus.com/our-insights/newsletters/tax-digest.html

Disclaimer

As always, we hope you enjoy this edition of our newsletter and we look forward to receiving your feedback. Should you have any questions regarding the information contained in the attached materials or our service offerings, please contact us directly.

Employee Benefits Update: October/November 2016

This issue’s topics include:

Small employers on notice
Fiduciary focus important for any size employer

One recent lawsuit alleging fiduciary duty violations caught the attention of many in the employee benefits business not because of the nature of the charges, but instead because it involved a small employer. A string of large employers have faced similar charges and ultimately compensated participants. Even though the plaintiffs later withdrew their complaint, this article examines why the filing of this case matters. A sidebar offers several methods of allocating recordkeeping fees equitably among participants.

Damberg et al v. LaMettry’s Collision Inc., 0:16-cv-01335 (Minn. D.C. 2016)

Read More

IRS places high priority on retirement plan internal controls

When IRS examiners check under the hood of many retirement plans, they often find a lack of sufficient internal controls. The consequences can be severe — even if an IRS audit doesn’t turn up any other problems. The worst-case scenario? Theft of plan assets that is financially damaging to participants and your company, and can also lead to plan disqualification. This article highlights the importance of internal controls for both retirement plan sponsors and their service providers.

Read More

Fair Labor Standards Act update
New employee exempt status threshold rules affect retirement plans

Changes to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) that take effect December 1 could have implications for retirement plans. The changes affect what forms of compensation businesses use to calculate employer contributions to their qualified retirement plans and determine highly compensated employee (HCE) status. This article reviews the new exemption rules and how they affect retirement plans.

Read More

Hybrid pension plan interest credit rule amendment deadline nears

The deadline for hybrid pension sponsors to adopt plan amendments bringing them into compliance with key provisions of final IRS hybrid plan regulations is fast approaching: January 1, 2017 (2019 for collectively bargained plans). This article reviews the deadline for transitional amendments to satisfy the regulations’ market rate-of-return rule.

Read More

Compliance alert

This feature lists a few key tax reporting deadlines for October and November.

Read More

As always, we hope you enjoy this edition of our newsletter and we look forward to receiving your feedback. Should you have any questions regarding the information contained in the attached materials or our service offerings, please feel free to contact me directly.

Want to learn more?

Join our Employee Benefit Plan Resources group on LinkedIn for more frequent updates on recent developments and best practices and discuss related topics with your peers.

Join the Group

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What are you forgetting?

Reviewing commonly overlooked fiduciary duties

Although retirement plan fiduciaries take their jobs seriously, it can be hard to cover all the bases. That’s understandable, considering the broad scope of fiduciary responsibility as well as the dynamic nature of the retirement plan designs, investment management and legal interpretations of fiduciary duty. Some common pitfalls include failing to identify the plan’s fiduciaries, insufficiently training fiduciaries and spending too much time on inappropriate investments.

Don't forget!

Knowing your fiduciaries

Do you know the identities of all your plan fiduciaries? Fiduciaries should know who else carries the responsibilities. Having fiduciary status — and the liability associated with the role — is a powerful motivator to pay careful attention to the management of the retirement plan. However, the scope of your fiduciary duty varies according to the role taken. Let’s take a closer look at the types of plan fiduciaries:

Named fiduciaries. ERISA requires the existence of named fiduciaries. The plan document identifies the corporate entity or individual serving as the named fiduciary. If they aren’t immediately identified, the plan document will set the requirements for naming them. The named fiduciary can designate and give instructions to plan trustees.

Plan trustees. These are people who have exclusive authority and discretion to manage and control the plan assets. The trustee can be subject to the direction of a named fiduciary. These plan fiduciaries have a broad scope of responsibility.

Board of directors and committee members. ERISA considers individuals — typically the corporate board of directors, who choose plan trustees and administrative committee members — fiduciaries. The scope of their fiduciary duty focuses on how they fulfill that specific function, and not on everything that happens with the plan itself. The law also sees as fiduciaries people who exercise discretion in key decisions about plan administration, including members of an administrative committee, if such a committee exists.

Investment advisors. The named fiduciary can appoint one or more investment managers for the plan’s assets. People or firms who manage plan assets are plan fiduciaries. However, individuals employed by third party service providers can fall into different fiduciary categories. The investment manager who has complete discretion over plan asset investments (known as an ERISA 3(38) fiduciary) has the greatest fiduciary responsibility.

In contrast, a corporation or individual who offers investment advice, but doesn’t actually call the shots (an ERISA 3(21) fiduciary), has a lesser fiduciary responsibility. The advice can be about investments or the selection of the investment manager.

Service providers. If you use service providers, be sure the service agreement clearly specifies when a service provider is acting in a fiduciary capacity.

Anyone who exercises discretionary authority over any vital facet of plan operations falls under a catch-all category of a “functional fiduciary.”

Training your fiduciaries

Given the crucial role fiduciaries play, they must be properly trained for the role. This is a step that’s often neglected and can be of particular concern for company employees who don’t have full-time jobs related to running the plan.

Failing to properly train fiduciaries to carry out their roles may represent a fiduciary breach on the part of the other fiduciaries responsible for selecting them. The U.S. Department of Labor is known to focus on this when it reviews a plan’s operations. Also, have named fiduciaries (such as individually named trustees or members of plan committees) accept in writing their role as a fiduciary.

Providing proper insurance

A sometimes overlooked task includes properly protecting your plan’s fiduciaries against costly litigation and penalties with insurance designed for this purpose. Companies generally cover fiduciaries who also serve as corporate directors or officers through directors and officers or employment practices insurance policies. These generally don’t extend to fiduciary breaches.

And remember, ERISA fidelity bonds protect the plan’s assets from theft or fraud, not from fiduciary breaches. ERISA requires a fidelity bond, but not fiduciary liability insurance. However, given that anyone who is a fiduciary is personally liable for any violation of their fiduciary duties, you should have fiduciary liability coverage, often called an ERISA rider.

Focusing on the wrong investments

Stock market volatility and speculation about changes in Federal Reserve policies (and their resulting financial market impact) can lead plan fiduciaries to rely on retirement fund investment alternatives that focus on narrow sectors and strategies. This can divert fiduciaries’ attention from the investment options where most of their participants are parking the majority of their retirement savings: stable value and target date funds (TDFs).

Neglecting the big picture

Ultimately, retirement plans should prepare employees for retirement. How well that’s accomplished is often referred to as participant “outcomes.” Fiduciaries with broad responsibility for plans that ignore the big picture ultimately are failing participants, and possibly making themselves vulnerable to a charge of neglecting their fiduciary duties. Reviewing the common mistakes regularly can help you avoid making them.

Should you have any questions regarding the information contained in the attached materials or our service offerings, please feel free to contact me directly.

Want to learn more?

Join our Employee Benefit Plan Resources group on LinkedIn for more frequent updates on recent developments and best practices and discuss related topics with your peers.

Join the Group

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