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Study Guide - Affordable Care Act Employer Mandate

The study guide is provided to guide you through the course material in a step by step format.

Course material is an online PDF document available immediately upon purchase.

Prerequisite: None 
Course level: Basic
Advanced preparation: None 
Teaching method: Online study and exam

Introduction

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) has brought about the most significant change in healthcare since the passage of the 1965 legislation that authorized Medicare. It imposes healthcare-related requirements on health plans, health insurers, employers and individuals.

Eligible small employers may receive tax credits for providing health insurance coverage to their employees, and large employers may find themselves subject to tax penalties for failing to provide such employee coverage. This course will review the principal coverage provisions of the law and will examine its tax impact on employers.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this course, you should be able to:

  • List the principal coverage provisions of the PPACA;
  • Recognize the shared responsibility requirements for applicable employers regarding employee health coverage;
  • Compute the potential tax penalties that may be imposed under the PPACA for an employer’s failure to meet the applicable shared responsibility requirements; and
  • Calculate the tax credits for which a small employer may be eligible for providing employee health insurance coverage.

Chapter 1 - Overview

The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

  • Grandfathered Health Plans
  • Pre-existing Conditions Exclusions Prohibited
  • Benefit Limits Prohibited
  • Contract Rescission Limited
  • Patent Protections
  • Emergency Services
  • Large Employer Requirements
  • Adult Children Coverage

Chapter 2 - Employer Credits and Requirements

The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

  • Form W-2 Reporting
  • Small Employer Health Insurance Premium Credit
  • Large Employer Share Responsibility
  • Self-insured Plan Fees

Study Guide - 1040 Overview

The study guide is provided to guide you through the course material in a step by step format.

Course material is an online PDF document available immediately upon purchase.

Prerequisite: None 
Course level: Basic
Advanced preparation: None 
Teaching method: Online study and exam

Learning Objectives

The study guide is provided to guide you through the course material in a step by step format.

Course material is a PDF document.

Chapter 1 – New Tax Law/Recent Updates 

Assignment: Chapter 1 <<>> Review Questions  Group #1: # 1-3

When you have completed the Chapter 1 text, you should be able to:

  • Identify the 2016 standard deductions, exemptions and tax filing thresholds;

  • Understand the changes in the repair regulation safe harbor amount;

  • List the individual tax extenders that are permanent and temporary under the PATH Act of 2015; and

  • Recognize the federal income tax return due dates and the extensions of time available for filing.

Chapter 2 – The Income Tax Return

Assignment: Chapter 2 <<>> Review Questions Group #2: #1-2

When you have completed the Chapter 2 text, you should be able to:

  • List the five federal income tax filing statuses and the conditions applicable to their use;

  • Understand the fundamental risks involving tax-related identity theft;

  • Recognize the best practices to ensure obtaining correct names and Social Security numbers of taxpayers and dependents; and

  • Identify the rules applicable to claiming a dependent.

Chapter 3 – Taxability of Wages, Salaries, Tips and Other Earnings

Assignment: Chapter 3 <<>> Review Questions Group #3: #1-2

When you have completed the Chapter 3 text, you should be able to:

  • Identify the tax treatment of various types of earnings, including –
    • Allowances and reimbursements,
    • Bonuses and various awards,
    • Differential wage payments,
    • Severance pay, and
    • Sick pay;
  • Recognize the tax treatment applicable to interest received under the Education Savings Bond program and local/state government obligations;
  • Compare the tax treatment of qualified dividends and dividends that are not qualified; and
  • Recognize the required holding period for qualified dividends.

Chapter 4 – Foreign Accounts, Refunds, Unemployment Compensation, Self-Employment Income and Social Security Benefits

Assignment: Chapter 4 <<>> Review Questions Group #4: #1-2

When you have completed the Chapter 4 text, you should be able to:

  • Determine when Form 1040 Schedule B must be filed;
  • Define “financial account” as used in tax law;
  • Understand the nature of signature authority;
  • Define “unemployment compensation” and recognize its tax treatment;
  • Identify the components of self-employed income;
  • Recognize the self-employed taxpayer’s expenses that may be deducted from gross income;
  • Determine the earnings and expense records that must be kept by a self-employed taxpayer; and
  • Calculate the taxability of Social Security benefits.

Chapter 5 – IRAs, Pensions, Annuities, Capital Gains and Losses

Assignment: Chapter 5 <<>> Review Questions Group #5: #1-4

When you have completed the Chapter 5 text, you should be able to:

  • Identify the income level at which a traditional IRA contribution by an active participant in an employer-sponsored retirement plan becomes non-deductible;
  • Determine the tax treatment of traditional IRA and Roth IRA distributions;
  • Calculate the tax penalty applicable to premature distributions from an IRA;
  • Recognize the rules that apply to lifetime and post-mortem IRA required minimum distributions;
  • Identify the tax rules that apply to distributions from an employer-sponsored retirement plan;
  • Calculate the taxable income received by a taxpayer under a nonqualified annuity; and
  • Recognize the tax rules applicable to capital gains and losses.

Chapter 6 – Adjustments and Deductions

Assignment: Chapter 6 <<>> Review Questions Group #6: #1-2

When you have completed the Chapter 6 text, you should be able to:

  • Calculate the amount of adjustment to a taxpayer’s income for student loan interest;

  • Compute the available deduction for tuition and fees;

  • Identify the items that may be deducted by a taxpayer itemizing deductions; and

  • Recognize the limits applicable to itemized deductions by high-income taxpayers.

Chapter 7 – Child and Dependent Care, Education, Retirement and Child Tax Credits

Assignment: Chapter 7 <<>> Review Questions Group #7: #1-4

When you have completed the Chapter 7 text, you should be able to:

  • Recognize the tax credits that may be available to a taxpayer;

  • Identify the rules applicable to a child tax credit;

  • Determine the availability of a retirement tax credit for a taxpayer; and

  • Calculate a taxpayer’s child and dependent care credit.

Chapter 8 – ACA Provisions

Assignment: Chapter 8 <<>> Review Questions Group #8: #1-6

When you have completed the Chapter 8 text, you should be able to:

  • Calculate the permitted contributions and distributions from tax-favored health plans;
  • Recognize the changes to –
    • The medical expense deduction threshold, and
    • Social Security taxes on high earners and on net investment income;
  • Understand the requirements under the ACA for taxpayers to maintain healthcare coverage;
  • Identify the reasons a taxpayer may be considered exempt from the penalty for failing to maintain required health insurance; and
  • Calculate the penalty applicable to a non-exempt taxpayer for failing to maintain required health insurance.

Chapter 9 – Earned Income Tax Credit

Assignment: Chapter 9 <<>> Review Questions Group #9: #1-3

When you have completed the Chapter 9 text, you should be able to:

  • Recognize the rules concerning eligibility for an earned income tax credit;
  • Identify the earned income, adjusted gross income and investment income limits that apply to a taxpayer’s eligibility for an earned income tax credit;  and
  • Calculate the amount of the earned income credit.

Chapter 10 – Tax Payments and Refunds

Assignment: Chapter 10 <<>> Review Questions Group #10: #1-2

When you have completed the Chapter 10 text, you should be able to:

  • Understand the tax withholding and estimated tax rules;
  • Recognize the penalties that may apply for insufficient tax withholding;
  • Understand the criteria that must be met to be exempt from tax withholding;
  • Identify the options available to a taxpayer to pay taxes due; and
  • Recognize the rules applicable to obtaining a tax refund.

Chapter 11 – Ethics, Practices & Procedures

Assignment: Chapter 11 <<>> Review Questions Group #11 #1-8

When you have completed the Chapter 11 text, you should be able to:

  • Recognize the penalties applicable to a tax return preparer’s negligent or intentional disregard of rules and regulations;
  • Apply the rules related to negotiating client refunds;
  • Identify the due diligence requirements imposed on tax return preparers;
  • Understand the e-file requirements; and
  • Recognize the requirements related to signing and furnishing identifying numbers on client returns and the penalties for failing to do so.

Study Guide - Keeping Taxpayer Data Secure

Keeping Taxpayer Data SecureThe study guide is provided to guide you through the course material in a step by step format.

Introduction

The annual global cost of cybercrime is high and getting higher all the time. In fact, cyber criminals reap a windfall from their activities that is likely to be in the trillions. Almost all of that cybercrime began with—and continues to start with—a social engineering concept known as “phishing.”

Certain business organizations, among which are those referred to as “financial institutions,” are charged by the FTC with taking particular steps to protect their customers’ financial information. Included in the category of financial institutions are professional tax preparers. Professional tax preparers normally maintain a significant amount of taxpayer information in various files—electronic and paper—that would be a treasure trove for cyber criminals.

In this course, tax preparers are introduced to the problem of cybercrime and its costs, offered methods that can be expected to reduce the chances of becoming a cybercrime victim, and informed of proper steps to take if they do become victims of cybercrime.

 

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this course, you should be able to:

·         Recognize the pervasiveness of cybercrime;

·         Identify the potential costs of experiencing a data breach;

·         Understand the best practices that may be implemented to protect a tax preparer from cybercrime; and

·         List the responsibilities of a tax preparer who has experienced a taxpayer data breach.

Course material is an online PDF document available immediately upon purchase.

Prerequisite: None

Course level: Basic

Advanced preparation: None

Teaching method: Online study and exam

Chapter 1 - Introduction to Cybercrime

When you have completed this chapter, you should be able to:

·         Identify the source of the most frequent type of malicious access to a firm’s taxpayer information;

·         List the most common types of cyber attack;

·         Describe how a denial-of-service attack operates to impede business operations; and

·         Recognize the dangers of Trojan horses.

Chapter 2 - Laws & Regulations Safeguarding Taxpayer Data

When you have completed this chapter, you should be able to:

  • ·         List the principal causes of a data breach involving customer records;

  • Understand the objectives and requirements of the Safeguards Rule;
  • Identify the notification requirements imposed by the Financial Privacy Rule; and
  • Distinguish between a customer and a consumer under FTC regulations.

Chapter 3 - The Costs of a Data Breach

When you have completed this chapter, you should be able to:

  • List the principal causes of a data breach involving customer recorsd;
  • Identify the investigation and remediation activities normally undertaken by an organization following a data breach involving customer information;
  • Recognize the average costs of a data breach in the United States; and
  • Understand the probability of a business experiencing a data breach within the next 24 months.

Chapter 4 - The Information Security Plan

When you have completed this chapter, you should be able to:

  • Recognize the function of a firm’s Information Security Plan;
  • List the principal sections of an Information Security Plan;
  • Identify the role of an Information Security Plan’s physical security procedures; and
  • Describe the elements comprising a firm’s information and computer system.

Chapter 5 - Best Practices for Securing Data

When you have completed this chapter, you should be able to:

·         List the data use and retention areas generally vulnerable to unauthorized access of taxpayer information; and

·         Identify best practices for securing taxpayer information.

 

 

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