Who Can Change Tax Laws? An Expert's Guide

Tax laws are the legal rules and procedures that govern how federal, state and local governments calculate the taxes you owe. These laws cover income, corporate, special, luxury, wealth and property taxes, to name just a few. The 11 subheadings of the U. S.

Internal Revenue Code (IRC) cover different types of federal taxes, including income, wealth, gift and special taxes. While you don't need to read the laws when preparing your tax return, your forms and instructions will certainly change every year to reflect the new tax laws. The tax bill begins in the House of Representatives and is referred to the Ways and Means Committee. When the members of this committee reach an agreement on legislation, they draft a bill. Once Congress approves the bill, it goes to the president, who can sign it into law or veto it.

The IRS is working on implementing the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA), which will affect individuals, companies, government entities and tax exempt entities. Presidents can recommend changes to current tax laws, but only Congress can make the changes. Title 26 of the U. Internal Revenue Code (IRC) is the basis of federal tax law in the United States. The IRC also sets out the procedural and administrative rules that both taxpayers and the IRS must follow.

For example, indicate the due date of your return and the amount of time the IRS has to audit it. Federal tax law is more than just the IRC. In fact, Congress allows the Treasury Department to issue regulations that interpret each section of the code with longer explanations and examples. When it comes to federal tax law, these regulations have substantial authority and the IRS has no option but to enforce tax law in accordance with these regulations. Often, the tax laws passed by Congress are extremely brief and provide only general principles. For example, a code section can only have two sentences; while the corresponding Treasury regulations will include a series of pages that explain various scenarios for how to apply the code section in different situations. While not all states impose an income tax, each certainly evaluates other types of taxes, such as property, inheritance and sales taxes.

These are also the creation of state governments, separate and distinct from federal laws. As a result, state governments have their own tax codes that serve the same purpose that the IRC has for the federal government. You can even create tax laws at the county and city levels. For example, people who live in New York City are subject to federal income tax, New York State income tax, and city income tax. Tax laws are not set in stone. In recent years, for example, the federal government has imposed temporary cuts in income taxes and other tax incentives on companies to stimulate the economy.

At the local level, states, cities and counties adjust property tax rates from year to year based on different factors, such as budget deficits and the cost of providing government services. Regardless of the reason, tax laws are created and updated through the same process. The Congress or Legislature first proposes a tax bill and then votes to pass it. If you do, the change becomes law that you may end up seeing on one of your tax returns. The tax bill must be presented in the House of Representatives because it is supposed to represent individual citizens rather than entire states as is done in Senate. Since this tax applies to AGI that exceeds an applicable threshold, AGI includes ordinary and capital gains which are not reduced by charitable deductions or any other itemized deduction. Therefore most trusts and inheritances that have ownership of profitable businesses or interests in profitable entities taxed as corporations will be subject to 3.8% net investment income tax unless income received is paid to beneficiaries in which case beneficiaries will be subject to taxes as if they were. Each year taxpayers can itemize their tax return or take standard deduction to reduce their taxable income which means some people can stay in lower tax bracket while those who received increase in cost of living can prevent part of their income from moving into higher category. Remember that with TurboTax we'll ask you simple questions about your life and help you fill out all right forms with TurboTax you can be sure that your taxes are done correctly from simple to complex returns no matter your situation answer simple questions about your life TurboTax Free Edition will take care of rest just for simple returns do you have claim Pell Grant money on your taxes is life insurance taxable how make back taxes calculate your refund where stand start easily calculate your rate make smart financial decisions start know much withhold paycheck larger refund start estimate self-employment eliminate surprise obtain started calculate capital gains losses related sale cryptocurrency start Spanish see much charitable donations worth start filing return faster easier free TurboTax app.

Jacob Macdonnell
Jacob Macdonnell

Incurable zombieaholic. Passionate beer maven. Zombie trailblazer. Hipster-friendly coffee fanatic. Infuriatingly humble foodaholic.