WNDE Partner Candace Huie Comments on National Tax Reform Efforts

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In response to an Orange County Business Journal inquiry about the prospects for national tax reform, White Nelson Diehl Evans Partner Candace Huie offered the following comments: Since the conclusion of the presidential election, many people are anxiously awaiting the proposed changes in tax laws.  As tax professionals, our clients look to us for guidance and to help them navigate business decisions and transactions that may be greatly impacted by these potential changes.  Where we had hoped for some timely resolution, we are now taking a “wait and see” approach.  It appears that with the efforts being expended on the repeal and replacement of the Affordable Care Act, tax reform has clearly taken a backseat.

Although the tax reforms proposed by President Trump and the GOP differ, there are enough similarities that we expect significant changes to occur.  However, the timing of these changes is the challenge that every taxpayer faces.

The most anticipated tax law change seems to be the lower tax rates for both individuals and business entities, specifically pass-through entities, with the elimination of the alternative minimum tax coming in a close second.  Owners of closely held companies in particular are holding off on tax planning moves until closer to year-end and will most likely be advised to defer income and accelerate deductions in anticipation of lower taxes in 2018.  Business owners are well-advised to postpone any sales of businesses until the new tax reform has been enacted with the hopes of lower capital gains rates, lower individual income tax rates and the elimination of the Net Investment Income Tax.

Staying in close contact with your tax professional through the remainder of the tax year is my best advice for taxpayers.

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