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‘Wealth advisers’ upset at new IRS unit design to target super-rich

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Offshore tax shelter? Check. Income hidden from tax authorities? Check. New IRS unit specifically set up to target taxpayers with tens of millions of dollars? Check.

IRS Commissioner Doug Shulman told the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants Monday that the agency has set up a unit specifically to deal with rich Americans who are hiding assets.

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“We will take a unified look at the entire web of business entities controlled by a high-wealth individual,” Shulman said. “At least initially, we will be looking at individuals with tens of millions of dollars of assets or income.”

“The high-wealth unit will focus on trusts, real estate investments, privately held companies and other business entities controlled by rich individuals. While use of sophisticated legal structures are at times legal, there are other instances where they ‘mask aggressive tax strategies,’ he said.”

“You cannot assess compliance among the nation’s wealthiest individuals by looking only at their 1040s [tax returns],” Shulman added. “Our goal is to better understand the entire economic picture of the enterprise controlled by the wealthy individual and to assess the tax compliance of that overall enterprise.”

The Wall Street Journal says “wealth advisers” are upset.

Wealth advisers questioned how much the new IRS approach adds, since in some cases, even under the old structure, an audit of a high-net-worth person may have looked across multiple income sources and asset classes.

However, “audits can sometimes be quite insular and silo-like,” said Ronald Aucutt, a partner at the law firm of McGuire Woods. In particular, gift-tax audits and income-tax audits are usually not coordinated, he said.

The reorganization is part of a multifront IRS effort to crack down on tax evasion by wealthy Americans. The agency is now sifting through the results of a partial amnesty program that netted 7,500 disclosures by Americans who held offshore accounts.

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Japan, Germany and the UK already have such units, Reuters said.


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MSNBC’s Stephanie Ruhle: The markets finally realized the economic crisis is linked to the health crisis

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MSNBC market expert Stephanie Ruhle told Brian Williams on Wednesday that the reason Americans saw the stock market fall this week is that they have finally realized that things aren't getting any better.

Williams asked if the numbers this week are different from normal pre-election years.

"This is quite different," said Ruhle. "The markets have woken up to the fact that this health crisis is directly linked to the economic crisis. The markets can't thrive when we don't have a national plan to deal with the coronavirus. And you look at the GDP, you know that tomorrow, you led the show with it, the president is going to say, 'We're back, baby! With the greatest economy ever.' That's not the case. We have been seeing improvements. We are on the road to recovery. But even if we get 30 percent, 35 percent GDP, which would be positive, it's far from saying we're back."

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Stephen Colbert does hilarious MAGA-Frozen parody after Trump fans were abandoned in the Omaha cold

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Those who've been subjected to "Let it Go" from the Pixar film "Frozen," for the past decade will recognize the new tune from "A Late Show" host Stephen Colbert.

"MAGA Frozen" celebrates those who could lose a toe to the tune of "Let it Go."

"The MAGA rally just ended tonight,He danced to YMCA.His campaign bussed me out hereBut the ticket was one-way.Extremities have all gone numb,All to watch Trump attack Biden's son.My feet can't feel severe frostbite.I think I might,Lose a toe,Lose a toe,Left foot will have only four.Lose a toe,Lose a toe,My choice of footwear was poor.Obamacare will cover my stay.Oh, wait, Barrott got confirmed.Might have to sell this tiara on eBay."

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2020 Election

Brett Kavanaugh revised his Wisconsin ruling after Vermont official’s demands — but it still contains the lies

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Supreme Court Justice revised his Wisconsin opinion after a Vermont official complained that he misrepresented the way the state dealt with the election amid the pandemic. The problem, however, is that his corrections only cleaned up the sloppy language.

While it no longer appears like a high school mock trial assignment, it still lies about the example he gave in the Vermont details.

https://twitter.com/Jordan_S_Rubin/status/1321628261714190336

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