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Income Tax Returns

BUSINESS
March 30, 2005 | From Reuters
The difference between what taxpayers owe the government and what they actually pay on time totals more than $300 billion a year, the Internal Revenue Service said Tuesday. A research project at the tax agency found that the tax gap ranged from $312 billion to $353 billion in tax year 2001, compared with an earlier estimate of $311 billion. The project assessed individual, not corporate, taxes.
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BUSINESS
February 21, 2005 | Kathy M. Kristof, Times Staff Writer
Vince Dorn, a 46-year-old technical writer for Silicon Valley biotech companies, has filed his own tax returns for as long as he can remember. This year, he handed his Form 1040 to a professional. "We wanted to make sure we were getting all the tax breaks we could get," said Dorn, who recently launched a technical writing business. "We had all these things going on: kids headed to college, a new business, a new home, issues with retirement plans.
BUSINESS
February 21, 2005 | Kathy M. Kristof, Times Staff Writer
Come tax time, schoolteachers, military reservists, landlords and performing artists all have at least one thing in common -- they can claim special tax deductions without bothering to itemize. They're members of a growing club. People who buy fuel- efficient cars, employees who contribute to health savings accounts and indebted former students all warrant so-called above-the-line deductions.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 20, 2005 | Evan Halper, Times Staff Writer
California's tax agency is moving forward with a revolutionary -- some say disturbing -- concept: having the government do your taxes for you. Instead of getting blank forms in the mail this month, a small group of taxpayers selected for a pilot program will receive a tax return that's already filled out. All they'll need to do is sign it, enclose a check if they owe anything, and send it back to the state.
BUSINESS
February 2, 2005 | Marc Lifsher, Times Staff Writer
California officials on Tuesday launched a two-month amnesty program that they hope will coax scofflaws to cough up at least $250 million in back taxes. The general amnesty, the state's first in two decades, allows individuals and corporations owing income or sales taxes to pay up without being hit with financial penalties or criminal sanctions. "Tax amnesty is a win-win proposition," said state Controller Steve Westly. "Taxpayers get a break, and the state gets a boost."
NATIONAL
December 4, 2004 | From Associated Press
A Republican House aide was the prime mover behind a provision in appropriations legislation that would allow greater access to income tax returns, a spokesman for the House Appropriations Committee said Friday. It was Rich Efford, who heads the GOP staff of the panel's subcommittee controlling the Internal Revenue Service's budget, the spokesman said. The provision would let leaders of the House and Senate Appropriations committees grant access to themselves or their aides to tax returns.
BUSINESS
August 26, 2004 | Kathy M. Kristof, Times Staff Writer
Paying taxes may never be fun, but it may soon get easier. Under a pilot program, the state of California will volunteer to fill out the annual income tax returns for 10,000 residents with lower incomes and uncomplicated finances. If the test works, as many as 3 million of the state's 14 million taxpayers could be eligible for the program. Taxpayers with deductions and dependents, however, will still have to file the old-fashioned way.
BUSINESS
May 6, 2004 | From Associated Press
The Internal Revenue Service said Wednesday that taxpayers who used a tax shelter known as Son of Boss, which was marketed aggressively beginning in the late 1990s, could avoid some penalties if they came forward by June 21.
BUSINESS
April 23, 2004 | Kathy M. Kristof
About 400 users of the TurboTax software program got an unpleasant surprise last week: Their bank accounts were debited for hundreds of dollars in estimated tax payments that they didn't intend to make. The tax-preparation program has an option allowing taxpayers to electronically debit their bank accounts to pay federal income taxes. In about 400 cases, money was debited to pay 2004 taxes in advance by filers who said they had no intention of doing so, TurboTax spokesman Scott Gulbransen said.
NATIONAL
April 14, 2004 | Edwin Chen, Times Staff Writer
President Bush and First Lady Laura Bush reported taxable income of $727,083 for 2003 and paid $227,490 in federal income taxes, the White House said Tuesday. The couple's income came from the president's $400,000 annual salary and investments from the trusts in which their assets were held.
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