Have You Forgotten? The IRS Has!

Monday, September 11, 2023 – I am a subscriber to Dan Kennedy’s email list, and he recently shared his perspective on the significance of September 11th. In his email, he noted that we, as a society, have become more apathetic since the tragic events of 9/11.

Kennedy argues that we’re gradually becoming more accepting of troubling shifts in our society. This includes rising crime rates in major cities, porous borders, soaring national debt, and a failing educational system. He also mentions what he views as the military becoming more concerned with political correctness than readiness. Kennedy sees these developments as symptomatic of a general sense of complacency among Americans, and I agree.

From my viewpoint, there’s a specific concern that should be alarming to American business owners: the expanding powers of the IRS. The agency is implementing new policies that, I believe, are intrusive and limit our financial freedoms—measures that would have been unthinkable before the events of 9/11.

Take, for instance, the American Rescue Plan of 2021. The legislation proposed a sweeping financial reporting system that would monitor deposits and withdrawals in almost all types of financial accounts—whether it’s a bank account, an investment account, or even mobile payment platforms like Venmo, Paypal, and CashApp—once the account crosses a $600 transaction threshold. Though bank accounts were initially excluded, there’s a general sense that this exemption won’t last.

Furthermore, new regulations surrounding Form 1099-K are scheduled to go into effect in the 2023 tax year. This updated form will monitor payments made through third-party networks like PayPal and Venmo. Under the old rules, transactions were only reported if there were over 200 of them, amounting to more than $20,000 in a year. The new regulation lowers the reporting threshold to just $600 a year, regardless of the number of transactions. This shifts the burden of proof to taxpayers, requiring them to justify why these amounts shouldn’t be considered taxable income.

As someone who works closely with business owners, I consistently urge them to stand up against what I view as IRS overreach. The IRS has recently doubled its workforce, and it’s essential that we remain vigilant. Let’s not be complacent; the consequences could be as unforeseen and significant as those that unfolded on that fateful day in September 2001.

Steven A. Leahy is a tax attorney in Illinois. He was the host of the long-running popular Radio Show “The IRS Radio Hour” heard every Sunday evening on AM 560 The Answer. Attorney Leahy is also the author of the book “Deal With Your IRS Problems Today!” You can get a FREE copy of this important book at FreeIRSBook.com. Or Call 24/7 (312)664-6649

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