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As Talks Start, NAFTA Border States Urge Compromise

NAFTA

Westchester NY accountant Paul Herman of Herman & Company CPA’s is here for all your financial needs. Please contact us if you have questions, and to receive your free personal finance consultation!

From: Tax-News.com, Washington

Mayors from the border towns between the United States and Mexico, and the United States and Canada have called for a modernized North American Free Trade Agreement to remain in place.

On August 16, San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer and Tijuana Mayor Juan Manuel Gastelum met with other border leaders to voice support for improvements to NAFTA, on the first day of talks towards its renegotiation.

“There has never been a more important time for San Diego to champion international trade,” Faulconer said. “Trade, open dialogue, and collaboration create jobs, and economic prosperity for Americans, Canadians, and Mexicans alike. That’s why we are calling on federal leaders to preserve and modernize NAFTA for the benefit of future generations.”

“The North American Free Trade Agreement’s track record is one of economic growth and middle-class job creation. Nine million American jobs depend on trade and investment with Canada, and over one million of those are in California,” added Canadian Consul General James Villeneuve. “Negotiations have begun today in Washington, and Canada welcomes the opportunity to modernize the NAFTA. This is an opportunity to better align NAFTA to new realities in trade and investment and keep North America competitive.”

The leaders called for negotiators to embrace free trade and modernize the rules, ensuring that there are clear and straight-forward rules that small- and medium-sized businesses can thrive under.

Earlier this month, Faulconer, Gastélum and fifteen binational border mayors signed a formal resolution calling for continued efforts to engage and inform federal leaders about the benefits and importance of modernizing NAFTA.

NAFTA was negotiated in 1994 to remove barriers to the exchange of goods and services, spur economic growth, create jobs and enhance North American competitiveness.

Trilateral negotiations between the United States, Mexico, and Canada began on August 16 and are expected to take months. US President Donald Trump earlier said he would pull the US out of NAFTA if a substantial trade imbalance in favor of Canada and Mexico is not addressed.

IRS’s Appeals Function To Offer Online Consultations

Westchester NY accountant Paul Herman of Herman & Company CPA’s is here for all your financial needs. Please contact us if you have questions, and to receive your free personal finance consultation!

From: Tax-News.com, Washington
The Internal Revenue Service Office of Appeals will soon pilot a new web-based virtual conference option for taxpayers and their representatives.

Each year, the Office of Appeals hears the appeals of more than 100,000 taxpayers attempting to resolve their tax disputes without going to court. Currently, taxpayers involved in the appeals process can meet with an Appeals Officer by phone, in person, or virtually through videoconference technology available only at a limited number of IRS offices.

The new pilot program will use a secure, web-based screen-sharing platform to connect with taxpayers face-to-face from anywhere they have internet access.

“Taxpayers who choose the web-based option will be able to get face-to-face service remotely,” said IRS Chief, Appeals, Donna Hansberry. “In the future, the technology may give taxpayers greater options in engaging with Appeals and could allow us the flexibility to serve taxpayers virtually from any location using mobile devices or computers.”

“We hope this is one more option to enable IRS employees to provide timely, efficient and effective service to taxpayers,” said Hansberry.

Appeals plans to start the pilot on August 1, 2017, and will assess the results, including taxpayer satisfaction with the technology.

Success story: Victim of Preparer Fraud Receives Refund

Westchester NY accountant Paul Herman of Herman & Company CPA’s is here for all your financial needs. Please contact us if you have questions, and to receive your free personal finance consultation!

Every year the Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS) helps thousands of people with tax problems. This story is only one of many examples of how TAS helps resolve taxpayer issues. All personal details are removed to protect the privacy of the taxpayer.

TAS advocated on behalf of a taxpayer who was the victim of tax return preparer fraud. The taxpayer was very frustrated, since the first time she became aware of the fraud was when the IRS sent her a balance due notice on her tax return. TAS advocated for her by submitting all of the appropriate documentation to the IRS. It took significant efforts by TAS to get the IRS to recognize the taxpayer as a victim of preparer fraud. Ultimately, TAS was able to get the taxpayer’s account corrected and the balance due amount removed. The TAS office was relentless in making sure the taxpayer received the proper refund and that she was not held responsible for the refund the preparer received.

When working with the Taxpayer Advocate Service, each individual or business taxpayer is assigned to an advocate who listens to the problem and helps the taxpayer understand what needs to be done to resolve their tax issue. TAS advocates will do everything they can to help taxpayers and work with them every step of the way. Occasionally we feature stories of taxpayers and advocates who work together to resolve complex tax issues. Read more TAS success stories.

Learn more about TAS eligibility: https://taxpayeradvocate.irs.gov/about-us/learn-more-eligibility 

Any U.S. tax advice contained in the body of this website is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, by the recipient for the purpose of avoiding penalties that may be imposed under the Internal Revenue Code or applicable state or local tax law provisions.