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PAYROLL TAX AND REPORTING REQUIREMENTS FOR 2019

 Federal Income Tax Withholding Changes

Due to the inflation indexing provisions and other changes contained in the Internal Revenue Code, new withholding tables must be used for wages paid after December 31, 2018.

 Social Security (FICA) Tax

For 2019, the employee tax rate for social security will remain unchanged at 6.2%, as well as the Medicare tax rate of 1.45%. The 2019 social security wage base limit increases to $132,900 from the $128,400 in 2018. There is no wage base limitation for Medicare.

 Additional Medicare Tax

For 2019, the additional Medicare Tax will remain in effect. An employer must withhold additional Medicare Tax from wages it pays to an individual in excess of $200,000 in a calendar year, regardless of the individual’s filing status or wages paid by another employer. The additional tax rate is 0.9%. If you have any questions regarding this please contact us.

Federal Unemployment Tax

The federal unemployment tax rate remains at 0.6% for 2019.

 Payroll Tax Deposits

Because of the complexity of the Federal, State and Local Tax Deposit Rules, we suggest using a professional payroll company to prepare your company’s payroll. If you have any questions regarding your specific deposit rules, please contact us.

Forms 1094 and 1095

The Affordable Care Act’s reporting requirements for healthcare plan coverage information apply to all employers with 50 or more full-time or full-time equivalent employees during the previous year. Employers of all sizes that offer employer-sponsored self-insured coverage will also need to report information to the Internal Revenue Service and to individual employees. Form 1095’s must be provided to employees by March 4, 2019 and filed with the Internal Revenue Service by

February 28, 2019. If you have any questions regarding this, please contact us.

S Corporation Shareholders

Health insurance premiums paid by an S Corporation on behalf of 2.0% shareholder employees must be included in income for Federal purposes and reported on form W-2. Please contact us if you have any questions regarding this.

 New Hire Reporting

Employers are required to submit to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania a New Hire Report for each new employee within 20 days of the first day that the employee performs services for wages. There are several methods to report this information to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Visit their website at http://www.cwds.pa.gov for more information.

 Verification of Eligibility of Employment

All employers are required to obtain and keep on file a completed Form I-9 Employment Eligibility Verification for each employee upon hiring.

 Minimum Wage

Federal and Pennsylvania minimum hourly wage rates remain at $7.25. New Jersey minimum hourly rate increases to $8.85 effective January 1, 2019. For minimum wage rates for tipped employees or any other questions, please contact us.

Pension Plan Limitations

Some pension plan limitations have increased for the year 2019. If you have any questions regarding these limitations, please contact us.

 Overtime Rules

The U.S. Department of Labor issues regulations regarding overtime provisions. If you have any questions regarding these provisions, please contact us.

 Employee’s Personal Use of Employer Provided Vehicle

An employer must include annually the value of an employee’s personal use of a business vehicle in an employee’s gross wages. Please contact us if this applies to any of your employees or if you need more information.

Form 1098

Mortgage interest of $600 or more received in the course of a trade or business from an individual must be reported to the payer on a Form 1098 by January 31, 2019. A copy must also be filed with the Internal Revenue Service by January 31, 2019.

 Forms 1099

A Form 1099 MISC must be issued to any person or non-incorporated entity to which you have paid at least $600 in rents, services and certain other income payments. Form 1099 MISC must be filed with the Internal Revenue Service on or before January 31, 2019, when you are reporting nonemployee compensation payments in Box 7. Otherwise, file by February 28, 2019. The due date for furnishing payee statements remains at January 31, 2019.

Beginning January 1, 2018, anyone that makes the following payments is required to withhold from such payments 3.07% Pennsylvania tax:

NOTE: Withholding is optional for payors or lessees paying less than $5,000 annually. However, if you are unsure of the total amount of payments that will be made during the year, the Department encourages you to withhold and remit income tax from all payments made.

Please contact us if this applies to any of your subcontractors or if you need more information.

 Household Employees

If you pay someone to perform household duties you may be subject to payroll reporting requirements. Please contact our office if you are not sure of the applicability of this.

This letter does not cover all issues and changes related to payroll, payroll taxes and other reporting and compliance matters. It is intended only to provide limited information that may be applicable to your business. These rules and regulations are not all encompassing and there may be specific situations that need to be addressed individually. Please contact us if you need more specific information on any of the topics addressed in this letter.

Pursuant to Treasury Regulations, any U.S. federal tax advice contained in this communication, unless otherwise stated, is not intended and cannot be used for the purpose of avoiding tax-related penalties.

If you have any questions regarding the above information, please contact us at (610)366-7300 or through our website at www.lencpas.com.

BEST WISHES FOR A HAPPY AND PROSPEROUS 2019!

 

December, 2018

Tax Alerts
Tax Briefing(s)

On December 20, President Donald Trump signed the bipartisan, year-end government spending and tax package, just hours before federal funding was set to expire. Trump's signature on the over 2,000-page spending package avoided a government shutdown.


The Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) ( P.L. 111-148) individual mandate is unconstitutional because it can no longer be read as a tax, and there is no other constitutional provision that justifies this exercise of congressional power. However, the central question of whether the rest of the ACA remains valid after Congress removed the penalty for not having health insurance remained unanswered. Instead, the case was sent back to the district court to reconsider how much of the ACA could survive without the individual mandate penalty.


Proposed qualified opportunity zone regulations issued on October 29, 2018 ( REG-115420-18) and May 1, 2019 ( REG-120186-18) under Code Sec. 1400Z-2 have been finalized with modifications. The regulations. which were issued in a 550 page document, are comprehensive.


The IRS has issued final regulations that provide guidance on transfers of appreciated property by U.S. persons to partnerships with foreign partners related to the transferor. Specifically, the regulations override the general nonrecognition rule under Code Sec. 721(a) unless the partnership adopts the remedial allocation method and certain other requirements are satisfied. The regulations affect U.S. partners in domestic or foreign partnerships.


The IRS has released Publication 5382, "Internal Revenue Service Progress Update / Fiscal Year 2019—Putting Taxpayers First." This new annual report describes accomplishments across the agency, and highlights the work of IRS employees during the past year. It covers a variety of taxpayer service efforts, including development of the new Taxpayer Withholding Estimator, as well as operations support efforts on areas involving information technology modernization, human capital office initiatives, and others.


Bridget Roberts, the Acting National Taxpayer Advocate, released her 2019 Annual Report to Congress. The report discusses the key challenges facing the IRS regarding the implementation of the Taxpayer First Act, inadequate taxpayer service and limited funding of the agency. Further, Roberts released the third edition of the National Taxpayer Advocate’s "Purple Book," which presents 58 legislative recommendations designed to strengthen taxpayer rights and improve tax administration.


The IRS has modified the applicability dates for proposed regulations under Code Sec. 382 that were issued with NPRM REG-125710-18, September 10, 2019 (2019 proposed regulations). The IRS is withdrawing the text of the proposed applicability dates, and proposing revised applicability dates. The newly issued proposed rules would also provide transition relief.


The Treasury and IRS have issued final regulations on the due diligence and reporting rules for persons making certain U.S. source payments to foreign persons. Guidance is also provided on reporting by foreign financial institutions on U.S. accounts. The regulations are effective on the date the regulations are published in the Federal Register.


Taxpayers have been provided with additional guidance for complying with the Code Sec. 871(m) regulations on dividend equivalent payments for 2021, 2022, and 2023. The Treasury Department and the IRS intend to amend the regulations to delay the effective/applicability date of certain rules. Further, the phase-in period provided in Notice 2018-762, I.R.B. 2018-40, 522, has been extended.