Friday, January 20 2012
Federally Disregarded Entities are Disregarded for the Corporate Income Tax
Public Act 306 of 2011 (S.B. 653), Public Act 307 of 2011 (S.B. 666), Public Act 309 of 2011 (S.B. 678), and Public Act 311 (H.B. 4940), all effective January 1, 2012 specify that a person that is a disregarded entity for federal income tax purposes is classified as a disregarded entity for the Michigan Corporate Income Tax (CIT) and the personal income withholding tax. A flow-through entity does not include any entity that is disregarded.
Public Act 306 amends section 607 of the Income Tax Act. [MCL206.607]
Public Act 307 amends section 605 of the Income Tax Act. [MCL206.605]
Public Act 309 adds a new Section 699 to the Income Tax Act. [MCL206.699]
Public Act 311 amends section 701 of the Income Tax Act. [MCL206.701]
Thursday, January 19 2012
Business Loss Carryforward and Small Business Credit Clarified
Public Act 312 of 2011 (H.B. 4949), effective January 1, 2012 removes language from the business loss deduction that limits the carryforward of the loss to not more than 10 tax years after the loss year. The business loss can still be carried forward to the year succeeding the loss year and then to the next nine years.
Public Act 313 of 2011 (H.B. 4950), both effective January 1, 2012 removes language from the small business credit so that its calculation is clarified.
Wednesday, January 18 2012
Apportionment Procedures Dependant on Whether Flow-Through Entity is Unitary
Public Act 308 of 2011 (S.B. 673) and Public Act 310 of 2011 (S.B. 807), both effective January 1, 2012, significantly change the methodology for apportioning income from a flow-through entity.
When calculating the sales factor for the Michigan Corporate Income Tax (CIT), sales between a taxpayer and a flow-through entity unitary with the taxpayer must be eliminated. The sales factor numerator must include the proportionate share of total sales in Michigan of the flow-through entity that is unitary with the taxpayer, and the denominator must include the proportionate share of the total sales everywhere of the flow-through entity that is unitary with the taxpayer.
A flow-through entity is unitary with a taxpayer when the taxpayer owns or controls, directly or indirectly, more than 50% of the ownership interest with voting rights of the flow-through entity and that has business activities that result in the flow of value between the taxpayer and the flow-through entity (or between the flow-through entity and another flow-through entity unitary with the taxpayer) or has business activities that are integrated with, dependent upon or contribute to each other.
If a taxpayer has an ownership or beneficial interest in a flow-through entity, the taxpayer's business income attributable to business activities of the flow-through entity is apportioned to Michigan using the sales factor based on the business activities of the flow-through entity unless a flow-through entity is unitary with a taxpayer for apportionment purposes.
Tuesday, January 17 2012
Personal Investment Activities Not in the Regular Course of the Taxpayer's Trade or Business Are Not Subject to the Single Business Tax
Public Act 304 of 2011 (S.B. 368), effective December 27, 2011, but applicable retroactively is applicable to the Single Business Tax (SBT) which was repealed effective for tax periods prior to January 1, 2008. For purposes of the former Single Business Tax, the Michigan Department of Treasury shall not assess tax or decrease an overpayment and shall approve a claim for a refund (subject to the statute of limitations) for:
(1) an individual, estate, or person organized for estate or gift planning purposes for amounts received, income, or gain other than those from transactions, activities, and sources in the regular course of the person's trade or business and
(2) for receipts, income, or gain from transactions, activities, and sources in the regular course of the person's trade or business by a person organized exclusively to conduct investment activities for any person other than an individual or a person related to that individual or by common trust fund established under the Collective Investment Funds Act.
Monday, January 16 2012
Homestead Property Tax Credit Expanded
Public Act 273 of 2011 (H.B. 4990), effective January 1, 2012 expands the homestead property tax credit available against the Michigan personal income tax so that the portion of real property that is unoccupied and classified as agricultural for real property tax purposes is excluded from the taxable value of the homestead. An owner is not eligible for the credit if the taxable value of the homestead is greater than $135,000. Previously, the statute did not exclude the value of the unoccupied, agricultural property.
Personal Income Tax Deduction Re-Enacted for a Resident of a Renaissance Zone
Public Act 314 of 2011 (S.B. 748), effective January 1, 2012 and Public Act 315 (H.B. 5157), effective December 27, 2011 reinstate the Renaissance Zone personal income tax deduction for a taxpayer who resides in a Renaissance Zone for at least 183 consecutive days, and the taxpayer's gross income does not exceed $1 million.
A Renaissance Zone deduction from the Michigan personal income tax is re-enacted. Michigan law had contained a Renaissance Zone deduction from the personal income tax. It was repealed along with other provisions as part of the 2011 tax reform legislation. That legislation revised aspects of the personal income tax and enacted the corporate income tax.
To the extent included in gross income, a qualified taxpayer may deduct the sum of:
· income earned or received during the time that the taxpayer was a resident of the Renaissance Zone;
· interest and dividends received;
· capital gains received, prorated based on the percentage of time that the asset was held while the taxpayer was an Renaissance Zone resident; and
· income received from winning an online lottery game sponsored by Michigan if the date of the drawing was after the taxpayer became a Renaissance Zone resident.
The income used to calculate another deduction cannot be used to calculate the Renaissance Zone deduction as well. The net operating loss deduction is figured without regard to the Renaissance Zone deduction. Income from illegal activity cannot be used to compute the Renaissance Zone deduction.
If the taxpayer changes residency into or out of a Renaissance Zone during the tax year, the income subject to tax is determined separately for the time while a Renaissance Zone resident and while not a Renaissance Zone resident. The Renaissance Zone must have been designated as such before 2012.
Sunday, January 15 2012
Equipment Used to Generate Electricity is Excluded
Public Act 316 of 2011 (H.B. 5066), effective December 31, 2011 changes the definition of "eligible personal property" for the personal property taxes paid credit that may be claimed against the Michigan Business Tax. The definition excludes turbines powered by gas, steam, nuclear energy, coal or oil, the primary purpose of which is the generation of electricity for sale.
Saturday, January 14 2012
A Before Tax Season Opportunity to get Up To Date on Michigan Tax Issues
The 2012 tax season will be transitional involving the filing of final and part year final Michigan Business Tax (MBT) returns along with the first Corporate Income Tax (CIT) estimated tax returns. Changes to the Michigan Individual Income Tax will be effective January 1, 2012. However, the changes will immediately affect 2012 withholding and estimated tax payments.
Get answers to all your state tax issues in this critical update, available in 4 locations statewide!
Michigan State and Local Tax Update with Ed Kisscorni and Ron Kaley
When & Where: Ctrl+Click to follow link to seminar details in the city of your choice.
Wednesday, January 18, 2012 - Traverse City
Friday, January 20, 2012 -Novi
Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - Grand Rapids
Thursday, January 26, 2012 - Troy
Register or sign up for the seminar of your choice at the MACPA website www.michcpa.org or by contacting the MACPA CPE Department toll-free at 1.855.594.4273.
Michigan Single Business Tax
· Senate Bill 368
o Entities organized for estate and gift planning
o Investment entities and personal investment activities
o Sales of personal assets
o Casual sales
Michigan Business Tax
· MBT Amendments
o Certificated credits
o Technical amendments
· MBT Disregarded Entities
· MBT Filing issues
· MBT Audit Issues
Michigan Individual Income Tax
· Changes to credits
· Changes to withholding
o Pension and annuity payments
o Flow through entities
§ Out of Michigan
§ Publically traded partnerships
· Administrative provisions
· Michigan Supreme Court rulings
Change in Michigan Residency
· Taxation of retirement income
Corporate Income Tax
· Clean up bills passed in 2011
· Nexus issues - flow through entities
o Flow through entities
o Sourcing rules
Corporate Income Tax Planning
· S Corporation election
· Income shifting
· Small Business Credit
Michigan Sales and Use Tax
· Ten year use tax audit
· Michigan vendor liability
· Prewritten computer software
· Cloud computing (Software as Service)
· Audit procedures
· Transfer of title issues
Michigan Property Tax
· Personal Property Tax repeal
· Valuation issues in a declining economy
Friday, January 13 2012
Treatment of Disregarded Entities Clarified, Definition of "Business Income" Revised, Due Date of Final Payment Clarified and Definition of Research and Development Expenses Revised
A major piece of legislation advocated by the Michigan Association of Certified Public Accountants (MACPA) was signed into law by Governor Snyder on December 29, 2011
Public Act 305 of 2011 (S.B. 369), effective retroactively for Michigan Business Tax levied on or after January 1, 2008 clarifies the treatment of disregarded entities, revises the definition of "business income", specifies that the taxpayer's final tax liability must by the due date of the return and the definition of "research and development expenses" was revised. These provisions were part of a sixteen item list of technical amendments advocated by the MACPA. The MACPA plans to work on passage of the remaining items in 2012.
PA 305 clarifies the treatment of disregarded entities under the Michigan Business Tax (MBT). A person that is a disregarded entity for federal income tax purposes is classified as a disregarded entity for the MBT. A person that is a disregarded entity for federal income tax that before 2012 in an originally filed return was treated as a person separate from its owner or before December 1, 2011, in an amended return was treated as a person separate from its owner for a tax year that begins after 2007 is not required to file an amended return with the owner as a disregarded entity.
In addition, a person that is a disregarded entity for federal income tax that before 2012 in an originally filed return was treated as a person separate from its owner or before December 1, 2011, in an amended return was treated as a person separate from its owner for the first tax year that begins after 2009 may be treated as a person separate from its owner under the MBT for its tax year that begins after 2010 and ends before 2012. PA 305 overrules the Department of treasury notices requiring disregarded entities for federal tax purposes to file separate MBT returns.
The MBT definition of "business income" is revised to exclude income derived from investment activities unless the activity is in the regular course of the person's trade or business for a person that is organized exclusively to conduct investment activities and that does not conduct investment activities for any person other than the individual or a person related to that individual and for a common trust fund established under the Collective Investments Funds Act. Also, for individuals, estates, or persons organized for estate or gift planning purposes, business income includes income derived from the lease or rental or real property.
Due Date for Final Payment
PA 355 clarifies that the MBT taxpayer's final tax liability must be remitted by the last day of the fourth month after the end of the taxpayer's tax year. Previously, the Department of Treasury had adopted a restricted reading of the law requiring payment with the filing of the MBT return. When the MBT return was filed before the due date, but the tax paid on or before the due date, Treasury had been assessing penalty and interest for late payment.
Research and Development Expenses
The MBT definition of "research and development expenses" for the R&D expense credit is revised by PA 355 to mean qualified research expenses as that term is defined in IRC §41(b). Previously, it was defined as that term as defined in IRC §41(b).
Thursday, January 12 2012
Legislation Resets Job Creation Requirements and Provides For A Clawback of the Credit
Public Act 292 of 2011 (S.B. 855), effective January 1, 2012 amends the Michigan Business Tax (MBT) credits for the construction of a large-scale battery facility and for the construction of a cell manufacturing facility.
Construction of Large-Scale Battery Facility Credit
The (MBT) credit is available for the capital investment expense for the construction of a facility that will produce at least one or more of batteries, battery components, storage systems, battery thermal and management components or systems, AC or DC power supplies, power electronics, battery formation and test equipment or energy conversion devices including components related to such products of various sizes and capacities. Previously, the credit was for a facility that would produce large-scale batteries and manufacture integrated power management, smart control and storage systems from 500 kilowatts to 100 megawatts. In addition, the taxpayer must create at least 750 new jobs (previously, 500 jobs) in Michigan. The requirement that the taxpayer receive financing from conventional financing, recovery zone facility bonds or a federal loan guarantee is removed. The credit is capped at $50 million over four years (previously, $25 million per year for four years). The Michigan Economic Growth Authority (MEGA) is required to provide in the agreement that the credit is reduced by $65,000 for each job less than 750 that was not created and an additional clawback if the taxpayer fails to create at least 500 jobs. Finally, MEGA must adopt a resolution to authorize an agreement by June 30, 2012 (previously, March 1, 2010).
Construction of Cell Manufacturing Facility Credit
A taxpayer that is a member of a unitary business group claiming the construction of cell manufacturing facility credit is not required to file a combined return. If a separate return is filed, the taxpayer must create an additional 100 new jobs for a total of 400 jobs in Michigan; otherwise, the taxpayer must create 300 jobs. The credit is capped at $25 million per year for three years (previously, four years). The taxpayer may not then claim a credit for MEGA employment or plug-in traction battery packs. The voucher certificate for this credit may be refundable.
Wednesday, January 11 2012
The New Fee Is Effective January 1, 2012
Public Act 256 of 2011 (H.B. 4293), effective January 1, 2012 enacts a fireworks safety fee on retail sales of consumer fireworks and low impact fireworks. The fee is 6% of the gross retail income on sales worth $1.04 or more. A chart further details the fee that is imposed on sales of lesser amounts. A retailer with a location that is a permanent building or structure is allowed to keep 1% of the fee as a collection allowance. A person selling consumer fireworks is required to apply for and obtain a consumer fireworks certificate on an annual basis.
Tuesday, January 10 2012
Property Owner Failed to Follow Statutory Jurisdictional Requirements
In Peter Popek Trust v. Township of Howell, Michigan Court of Appeals, No. 300834, December 20, 2011, the Michigan Tax Tribunal properly dismissed a taxpayer's challenge to a special local property tax assessment that was levied by a township on her property because the taxpayer failed to comply with the statutory jurisdictional requirements. Rather than protesting the special assessment at the township hearing, she specifically requested that it apply to her property. The failure to protest was sufficient to support the Tax Tribunal's dismissal for lack of jurisdiction. The taxpayer also failed to petition the tribunal within 35 days of the township's final decision as statutorily required. Instead, the taxpayer waited nearly four years before she petitioned the Tax Tribunal. Further, because the taxpayer attended a hearing on the special assessment and acquiesced to the special assessment at that time, she was not denied procedural due process in this matter.
Monday, January 09 2012
Taxpayers Failed to Show Prejudice
In Witalec v. Township of West Bloomfield, Michigan Court of Appeals, No. 299935, December 20, 2011, a taxpayers' appeal of an order of the Michigan Tax Tribunal, which set the taxable value of their property for property tax years 2006, 2007, and 2008, failed because they could not show prejudice. Although the Michigan Court of Appeals agreed that the Tax Tribunal erred as a matter of law by calculating the property's taxable value for tax year 2006 by including additions from both calendar year 2004 and calendar year 2005, the taxpayers did not suffer any harm. The court considered the Tax Tribunal's calculation and an alternative calculation that the Tax Tribunal could have used for determining the property's taxable value and concluded that the property's taxable value for tax year 2006 did not change under either calculation. Therefore, the taxable value for tax year 2007 would have utilized the same base amount from tax year 2006, and the taxable value for tax year 2008 would have utilized the same base amount from tax year 2007.
Sunday, January 08 2012
State Tax Commission Could Retroactively Reassess Taxpayers' Property
In Wuebben v. Township of Franklin, Michigan Court of Appeals, No. 299573, December 22, 2011, the Court of Appeals ruled the Michigan Tax Tribunal did not err in concluding that the State Tax Commission (STC) had the authority to retroactively reassess the taxpayers' property for the tax years at issue because there were additions to the property that had been incorrectly omitted from the property tax roll. The taxpayers argued that the STC could not retroactively reassess property in the absence of some error or omission by the taxpayers. In this case, the structural additions on the property were omitted from the tax roll by a previous tax assessor. The Michigan Court of Appeals noted, however, that in Superior Hotels, LLC v. Mackinaw Twp, 282 Mich. App. 621, the court held that under new statutory language, the STC could retroactively reassess additions to property that were omitted from the tax roll, despite facts that showed no evidence of taxpayer omission.
The taxpayers also filed three specific exceptions to the proposed opinion and judgment of the tribunal's hearing referee, none of which related to the referee's conclusions with regard to the proper tax values to be placed on the taxpayers' property. The taxpayers argued that the scope of the tribunal's review was limited to the exceptions absent a hearing and that, because neither party took exception to or requested relief from the tax values in the referee's proposed opinion, the tribunal erred in reviewing and modifying the referee's tax values for the tax years at issue. However, provisions of the Administrative Procedures Act and the Tax Tribunal Act clearly indicated that the tribunal was the final authority on any decision within its jurisdiction absent appellate review. In arguing that the tribunal was limited in its review by the exceptions filed, the taxpayers were undercutting the tribunal's review powers, which were clearly mandated by the Administrative Procedures Act and the Tax Tribunal Act.
Circuit Court Lacked Jurisdiction to Enter Judgment of Mandamus
In Hillsdale County Senior Services Center, Inc. v. County of Hillsdale, Michigan Court of Appeals, No. 301607, January 3, 2012, the Court of Appeals ruled a circuit court lacked jurisdiction to enter a judgment for mandamus that ordered a county to levy in tax years 2010 through 2022 the entire 0.5 mill increase that was authorized by the voters in the county in 2008 for the purpose of providing services to older persons because the assessment was levied under the Michigan property tax laws. In this case, residents of the county who received services wanted an order of mandamus to compel the county to levy the full amount of the millage approved by the voters. However, the gist of the residents' action concerned whether the county had the authority to levy less than the millage limitation approved by the voters. The court noted that a jurisdictional claim should be determined not by how a complaint is phrased but by the relief sought and the underlying basis of the action. Because the question presented by the residents' action related to direct review of a determination of rates under the property tax laws, the Tax Tribunal had subject matter jurisdiction.
Saturday, January 07 2012
County Treasurers to Prepare Statements of Rejected Taxes
Public Act 321 of 2011 (S.B. 453), effective December 27, 2011 specifies that a county treasurer is required to prepare a statement by June 30 of each year setting forth all rejected local Michigan property taxes, the reasons for the rejection, and a description of the property upon which the taxes were assessed. A local tax collecting unit must provide any available information to the county treasurer that is necessary to complete the statement of rejected taxes. If the state treasurer approves a statement of rejected taxes, the state treasurer must return a copy of the statement of rejected taxes to the county treasurer.
If taxes were rejected or charged back, the taxes must be reassessed by the county treasurer upon the same property, collected with the taxes of the current year, and treated in the same manner as taxes of the current year, unless the property had not been subject to taxation at the time the taxes were assessed, the taxes had been paid, or there had been a double assessment of the taxes on the property. Taxes that were rejected or charged back would not be subject to penalties other than those that apply to taxes assessed in the current year. If the taxes could not be properly reassessed upon the same property, the county treasurer must cause the taxes to be reassessed upon the taxable property of the proper local tax collecting unit.
Qualified Agricultural Property Includes Property Implementing Wildlife Risk Mitigation Action Plan
Public Act 320 of 2011 (S.B. 725), effective December 27, 2011 specifies that for local Michigan property taxes levied after 2008, property cannot lose its status as qualified agricultural property or its classification as agricultural real property as a result of an owner or lessee of that property implementing a wildlife risk mitigation action plan. If the classification of property was changed as a result of the implementation of a wildlife risk mitigation action plan after 2008, the owner of the property may appeal the change in classification to the board of review in 2011 or in the three immediately succeeding years.
A "wildlife risk mitigation action plan" is a written plan consisting of one or more projects to help reduce the risks of a communicable disease spreading between wildlife and livestock that is approved by the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development under the Animal Industry Act. A "project" means certain risk-mitigating measures that may include, but are not limited to:
· making it difficult for wildlife to access feed by storing livestock feed securely, restricting wildlife access to feeding and watering areas, and deterring or reducing wildlife presence around livestock feed by storing feed in an enclosed barn, wrapping bales or covering stacks with tarps, closing ends of bags, storing grains in animal-proof containers or bins, maintaining fences, practicing small mammal and rodent control, or feeding away from wildlife cover; and
· minimizing wildlife access to livestock feed and water by feeding livestock in an enclosed area, feeding in open areas near buildings and human activity, removing extra or waste feed when livestock are moved, using hay feeders to reduce waste, using artificial water systems to help keep livestock from sharing water sources with wildlife, fencing off stagnant ponds, wetlands, or areas of wildlife habitats that pose a disease risk, and keeping mineral feeders near buildings and human activity or using devices that restrict wildlife usage.
Turbines Generating Electricity for Sale are Not Exempt Industrial Personal Property
Public Act 317 of 2011 (H.B. 5067), Public Act 318 of 2011 (H.B. 5068), and Public Act 319 (H.B. 5069), all effective December 31, 2011, and applicable as noted
Beginning December 31, 2011, industrial personal property that is eligible for local Michigan property tax exemptions does not include a turbine powered by gas, steam, nuclear energy, coal, or oil whose primary purpose is the generation of electricity for sale.
Revised Obsolete Property Rehabilitation Exemption Certificate Allowed
Public Act 272 of 2011 (H.B. 4820), effective December 19, 2011 specifies that a revised obsolete property rehabilitation exemption certificate that would provide a local Michigan property tax abatement may be issued if the State Tax Commission had issued an exemption certificate on September 20, 2010, for a rehabilitated facility located in a rehabilitation district that was established on January 23, 2003. In order to obtain a revised certificate, the owner of the rehabilitated facility must file an amended application to the local clerk. The amended application may cover one or more units in a multipurpose structure that was included in the original application. If the legislative body of the local unit of government and the State Tax Commission approve an amended application under these circumstances, the State Tax Commission must issue a revised certificate that includes those units with an effective date of December 31, 2008.
Friday, January 06 2012
Machinery Used to Install Land Tile is Exempt from Michigan Property Taxes
Public Act 289 of 2011 (H.B. 4582), effective December 21, 2011 exempts machinery used to install land tile from Michigan personal property taxes when used on qualified agricultural property that is exempt from taxes levied for school operating purposes. If machinery is used to install land tile on property other than qualified agricultural property, the machinery is exempt only to the extent that it is used on qualified agricultural property. A person claiming an exemption is required to indicate the machinery's percentage of exempt use in the statement of personal property that must be submitted to the supervisor or assessing officer. The term "land tile" means fired clay or perforated plastic tubing that is used as part of a subsurface drainage system for land.
Machinery Used to Implement Soil and Water Conservation Techniques is Exempt from Michigan Property Taxes
Public Act 290 of 2011 (S.B. 563), effective December 21, 2011 exempts machinery used to install or implement soil and water conservation techniques from Michigan personal property taxes when used on qualified agricultural property that is exempt from taxes levied for school operating purposes. If machinery is used to install or implement soil and water conservation techniques on property other than qualified agricultural property, the machinery is exempt only to the extent that it is used on qualified agricultural property. A person claiming an exemption is required to indicate the machinery's percentage of exempt use in the statement of personal property that must be submitted to the supervisor or assessing officer. The term "soil and water conservation techniques" means techniques for the conservation of soil and water described in the field office technical guide published by the Natural Resources Conservation Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Property Occupied by Charter Schools is Exempt from Michigan Property Taxes
Public Act 277 of 2011 (S.B. 618), effective December 20, 2011 exempts property occupied by a public school academy, urban high school academy, or school of excellence and used exclusively for educational purposes from Michigan real and personal property taxes levied for school operating purposes. Such property is also exempt from real and personal property taxes levied under the State Education Tax Act.