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IRS pushes back ma­jor W-4 changes un­til 2020

Wash­ing­ton, D.C. — The Trea­sury Depart­ment said the In­ter­nal Rev­enue Ser­vice would push back im­ple­men­ta­tion of a re­designed Form W-4 to tax year 2020, al­low­ing the agency to keep work­ing on a new ap­proach to the em­ployee with­hold­ing form.

The IRS re­leased a draft ver­sion of a new Form W-4, “Em­ployee’s With­hold­ing Al­lowance Cer­tifi­cate,” ear­lier this year in the wake of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, but it re­ceived heavy crit­i­cism from groups like the Amer­i­can In­sti­tute of CPAS and the Na­tional As­so­ci­a­tion of En­rolled Agents, which said that it raised pri­vacy con­cerns, cre­ated a sub­stan­tial risk of un­der­with­hold­ing, and would re­quire tax­pay­ers to fore­cast a num­ber of tax-re­lated items that are tra­di­tion­ally dif­fi­cult to pre­dict.

In June, the IRS re­leased a draft ver­sion of a re­designed form for pub­lic com­ment and re­ceived many sug­ges­tions for im­prove­ments, which the agency is work­ing to in­cor­po­rate in the form to be re­leased for tax year 2020. For tax year 2019, the IRS will in­stead re­lease an up­date to the Form W-4 that’s sim­i­lar to the 2018 ver­sion cur­rently in use. That 2019 form will be re­leased ac­cord­ing to the usual prac­tice for an­nual up­dates.

Tax­pay­ers get a break on em­ployee mov­ing ex­penses

Wash­ing­ton, D.C. — The IRS is al­low­ing peo­ple to con­tinue to deduct em­ployer pay­ments or re­im­burse­ments for em­ployee mov­ing ex­penses, as long as they hap­pened be­fore this year, although the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act will change that for this year and go­ing for­ward.

The IRS said that em­ployer pay­ments or re­im­burse­ments in 2018 for em­ploy­ees’ mov­ing ex­penses that were in­curred prior to 2018 can be ex­cluded from an em­ployee’s wages for in­come and em­ploy­ment tax pur­poses.

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