These 3 developments could affect your taxes in 2017:
Small Business Employers Who Don’t Offer Group Health Insurance
On December 13th, President Obama signed the “21st Century Cures Act” into law, which adopted the Small Business Healthcare Relief Act (SBHRA). This new law introduces provisions to small employers to offer individual health plans with qualified small employer health reimbursement arrangements (QSEHRAs) without facing high fines. There are two requirements that small business owners must meet to be eligible for qualified HRAs:
-Have fewer than 50 full-time employees (defined as those who work 30 or more hours a week for more than 120 days in a year).
-Do not currently offer a group health plan to their employees
As an employer, if you meet these qualifications and want to offer QSEHRAs to employees, simply discuss with your CPA about steps to take next.
Standard Mileage Rates Fall
The optional mileage allowance for owned or leased autos decreased 5 cents to 53.4 cents per mile for business travel. This rate can also be used by employers to provide tax-free reimbursements to employees who supply their own vehicle for business use. The rate for using a vehicle to get medical care or in connection with a move that qualifies as a moving expense decreased by 2 cents to 17 cents per mile.
At the end of 2016, 35 temporary tax provisions expired. Taxpayers were left uncertain as to whether these would be extended, made permanent, or left expired. These provisions could potentially be retroactively extended in the first session of the 115th Congress, or they may not be extended at all. As a taxpayer, you should contact your tax CPA to plan for these changes.
It is especially important to consult with your CPA regarding changes in the New Year and changes we can expect to see from the new Congress and President Trump.