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By EILEEN AMBROSE | November 13, 2007
Not again. You may recall that Congress last year extended several tax breaks too late to meet the printing deadline for tax forms. Tax filers had to know to claim those tax breaks on lines for other deductions. Congress is well on its way to blowing this year's printing deadline, too. Legislators have yet to agree on a temporary fix to the alternative minimum tax. Without it, an extra 21 million tax filers will be hit with the AMT in the coming filing season and pay on average $2,000 more in federal taxes.
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NEWS
December 7, 2012
It looks as if the administration and the lame-duck Congress are hell-bent on increasing taxes on "the rich," and we should all care about that because the U.S. already has such a levy: It's called the Alternative Minimum Tax. It was put in place in 1969 to catch a handful of rich folks who were not paying their "fair share. " But next year, thanks to bracket creep, the AMT will snare as many as 20 million middle-class Americans as well. Is that fair? That's how "tax the rich" works.
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BUSINESS
By EILEEN AMBROSE | April 25, 2004
MANY middle-income families will be shocked next year to find out that Uncle Sam considers them rich. They will be hit by the alternative minimum tax, which was designed in the late 1960s by Congress to make sure the truly wealthy didn't escape taxes through generous use of deductions and loopholes. The problem is that the tax was never adjusted for inflation. So the AMT has begun wrapping its tentacles around more middle- and upper-middle-income families. Households with incomes of $75,000 - hardly enough to move next door to Bill Gates - can be hit by the AMT if they take enough deductions, some tax experts said.
NEWS
June 16, 2012
In his op-ed "Annapolis dines at federal expense" (June 13) Sean Kennedy wrote: "The more Maryland taxes federal employees, the less money Uncle Sam can ask from them in taxes. " I have issues with this on several points. First, this applies to all workers, not just federal, and it is an attempt by the IRS to eliminate income taxes on money that is spent to pay other income taxes. Second, it only applies if one itemizes and does not take the standard deduction. Third, the alternative minimum tax eliminates this subsidy since it does not recognize either the standard or itemized state tax deduction (or personal exemptions either)
BUSINESS
By Chicago Tribune | April 15, 2007
As last-minute filers approach Tuesday's deadline to file their tax returns, some are going to be in for a rude shock: They're going to fall into the territory of the alternative minimum tax. The AMT was designed to ensure that high-income people paid at least some taxes, but it was not indexed to inflation, so it has ensnared an increasing number of Americans with higher tax bills. Changes by Congress have kept a lid on that growth, but the measures are temporary: An estimated 3.5 million taxpayers are due to pay the AMT for 2006, but without changes in the law, that will explode to more than 23 million this year and more than 32 million by 2010, say experts at the Tax Policy Center.
BUSINESS
By Jonathan Peterson and Jonathan Peterson,LOS ANGELES TIMES | November 2, 2007
WASHINGTON -- The tax-writing panel of the House voted yesterday to boost taxes paid by managers of many investment firms, as part of a broader tax-relief plan for millions of households who would owe extra money this year under the alternative minimum tax (AMT). The action by the House Ways and Means Committee ignited a struggle that will be played out in the coming days, as members battle over plans to prevent the AMT from hitting 23 million households this year. More broadly, the debate yesterday was a preview of conflicts over economic policy that will be heard in the presidential campaign and after next year's election.
NEWS
By JOEL HAVEMANN and JOEL HAVEMANN,LOS ANGELES TIMES | December 14, 2005
WASHINGTON -- Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, a Tennessee Republican, said yesterday that Congress had run out of time this year to save millions of upper-middle-income 2006 taxpayers from the grasp of the alternative minimum tax, which was created in 1969 to prevent the wealthiest citizens from sheltering most of their income from the IRS. Congress will have time next year to rescue these taxpayers from the tax's reach before their 2006 tax returns...
BUSINESS
By Eileen Ambrose and Eileen Ambrose,SUN STAFF | July 1, 2001
Many Marylanders, as well as residents in other high-tax states, may find their savings under the new tax law either shrink or disappear because of a little-known tax that will end up snagging millions more people in years ahead. The villain: the alternative minimum tax. Introduced in 1969, the tax is designed to make sure the rich don't avoid paying their share of taxes by making heavy use of deductions and other tax breaks. But the provision has been increasingly snaring middle-class taxpayers because it has never been adjusted for inflation.
BUSINESS
By Eileen Ambrose | February 6, 2005
At this point, it's too late to do anything to avoid the alternative minimum tax for this filing season. Now, you just need to find out if you'll have to pay it. Taxpayers will owe the government under the regular income tax or the AMT, whichever brings in more money to the government. Those who might be likely AMT candidates - and there are more of them every year - must figure out their taxes twice. To figure the AMT, they'll need Form 6251. Online calculators also are available at www.hrblock.
BUSINESS
By GAIL MARKSJARVIS and GAIL MARKSJARVIS,CHICAGO TRIBUNE | November 27, 2005
You may not live the life of the rich and famous, but when Uncle Sam taxes you, he may treat you as though you do. The alternative minimum tax, designed more than three decades ago to catch the cagiest of rich tax evaders who used clever deductions to eliminate their income tax, is becoming the feared tax of the middle class. Typically, people with incomes between $150,000 and $300,000 are most vulnerable to the AMT, but sometimes people with moderate incomes get nabbed - especially single parents with many dependents and deductions, salespeople with a lot of unreimbursed business expenses, or investors with certain bonds or other investment gains.
BUSINESS
By JAY HANCOCK | January 4, 2008
The trick with congressmen isn't merely stopping them from passing bad legislation. It's getting them to fix the terrible laws they've already enacted. For years, thousands of victims of a bizarre booby trap in the tax code have been pleading for help from Congress and the Internal Revenue Service. Their situation is so pitiful -- and the law so contrary to decency and common sense -- that Genghis Khan would have granted relief and apologized. Congress won't do either. After months of hearings, meetings and patient pleading, the legislature failed to assist people who owe taxes on phantom stock option income from the 1990s technology boom.
BUSINESS
By EILEEN AMBROSE | November 13, 2007
Not again. You may recall that Congress last year extended several tax breaks too late to meet the printing deadline for tax forms. Tax filers had to know to claim those tax breaks on lines for other deductions. Congress is well on its way to blowing this year's printing deadline, too. Legislators have yet to agree on a temporary fix to the alternative minimum tax. Without it, an extra 21 million tax filers will be hit with the AMT in the coming filing season and pay on average $2,000 more in federal taxes.
BUSINESS
By Jonathan Peterson and Jonathan Peterson,LOS ANGELES TIMES | November 2, 2007
WASHINGTON -- The tax-writing panel of the House voted yesterday to boost taxes paid by managers of many investment firms, as part of a broader tax-relief plan for millions of households who would owe extra money this year under the alternative minimum tax (AMT). The action by the House Ways and Means Committee ignited a struggle that will be played out in the coming days, as members battle over plans to prevent the AMT from hitting 23 million households this year. More broadly, the debate yesterday was a preview of conflicts over economic policy that will be heard in the presidential campaign and after next year's election.
BUSINESS
By Chicago Tribune | April 15, 2007
As last-minute filers approach Tuesday's deadline to file their tax returns, some are going to be in for a rude shock: They're going to fall into the territory of the alternative minimum tax. The AMT was designed to ensure that high-income people paid at least some taxes, but it was not indexed to inflation, so it has ensnared an increasing number of Americans with higher tax bills. Changes by Congress have kept a lid on that growth, but the measures are temporary: An estimated 3.5 million taxpayers are due to pay the AMT for 2006, but without changes in the law, that will explode to more than 23 million this year and more than 32 million by 2010, say experts at the Tax Policy Center.
BUSINESS
By Bloomberg News | January 30, 2007
WASHINGTON -- The Internal Revenue Service said yesterday that it has updated an online calculator to help Americans determine whether they owe the alternative minimum tax. "This tool helps people learn quickly whether they're going to be paying this tax," IRS Commissioner Mark Everson said. Most taxpayers can get an answer within five or 10 minutes by entering data into the calculator, he said. The calculator is an electronic version of an IRS worksheet that helps determine whether a taxpayer needs to fill out Form 6251, which determines any minimum tax liability.
NEWS
By JOEL HAVEMANN and JOEL HAVEMANN,LOS ANGELES TIMES | December 14, 2005
WASHINGTON -- Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, a Tennessee Republican, said yesterday that Congress had run out of time this year to save millions of upper-middle-income 2006 taxpayers from the grasp of the alternative minimum tax, which was created in 1969 to prevent the wealthiest citizens from sheltering most of their income from the IRS. Congress will have time next year to rescue these taxpayers from the tax's reach before their 2006 tax returns...
BUSINESS
By Janet Kidd Stewart | December 12, 2004
Get ready to hear three little words from your tax preparer that could equal one big headache next April: alternative minimum tax. More than 3 million taxpayers now fall into the byzantine second tax structure hatched in the 1960s to ensure that the wealthy didn't give their fair share. That includes more than half of all households earning between $200,000 and $500,000, according to the Tax Policy Center in Washington. Without a fix in the system, the AMT will ensnare more than half of households earning more than $75,000 by 2010, according to the tax think tank.
NEWS
December 7, 2005
America's war in Iraq has cost more than $200 billion - financed by China's purchases of Treasury bonds. Hurricane Katrina hit Washington this year with an unexpected bill of at least $100 billion. Since the budget surpluses that ended in 2001, the nation's cumulative deficits through the last fiscal year total $1.3 trillion - thanks largely to President Bush's historic tax cuts disproportionately benefiting the well-off. So what's Congress fighting over as 2005 comes to an end? More tax cuts, most of which would go to the well-off or to the very rich.
NEWS
December 7, 2005
America's war in Iraq has cost more than $200 billion - financed by China's purchases of Treasury bonds. Hurricane Katrina hit Washington this year with an unexpected bill of at least $100 billion. Since the budget surpluses that ended in 2001, the nation's cumulative deficits through the last fiscal year total $1.3 trillion - thanks largely to President Bush's historic tax cuts disproportionately benefiting the well-off. So what's Congress fighting over as 2005 comes to an end? More tax cuts, most of which would go to the well-off or to the very rich.
BUSINESS
By GAIL MARKSJARVIS and GAIL MARKSJARVIS,CHICAGO TRIBUNE | November 27, 2005
You may not live the life of the rich and famous, but when Uncle Sam taxes you, he may treat you as though you do. The alternative minimum tax, designed more than three decades ago to catch the cagiest of rich tax evaders who used clever deductions to eliminate their income tax, is becoming the feared tax of the middle class. Typically, people with incomes between $150,000 and $300,000 are most vulnerable to the AMT, but sometimes people with moderate incomes get nabbed - especially single parents with many dependents and deductions, salespeople with a lot of unreimbursed business expenses, or investors with certain bonds or other investment gains.
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