AICPA's Tax Reform Center 

    What's New in Tax Reform?



      Despite technological advances, complying with the tax code remains a challenge for both businesses and individuals and the "tax gap" - the difference between what is owed and what is paid - continues to grow. Taxpayers spend an estimated 6 billion hours each year working on their taxes. 1040 tax form and calculator to calculate the tax gap
        • The move to reform the tax code is escalating - so the AICPA created this page to keep you up to date on tax reform news and analysis and share our recommendations for cleaning up the code. Check back regularly as we add resources and news.

        What is the AICPA Doing for Tax Reform?


        • The AICPA staff and volunteer task forces began early to educate congressional committees about the profession’s tax administration concerns - some of those concerns are now addressed in draft proposals. And we continue to offer guiding principles and technical expertise as lawmakers refine their proposals.
        We aim to provide unbiased facts and analysis to foster informed discussion, and keep a vigilant eye on the end goal: Emerging with a system that is perceived as balanced, fair to all, administrable, economically efficient, transparent, and neutral in its effect on economic activity.


        Tax Executive Chair Jeff Porter testifies at Senate hearing

        AICPA Actions & Accomplishments

        Since Congress began look its current review of tax reform, the AICPA has testified numerous times and meets regularly with congressional staff and lawmakers. 

        To date, we have:

        News and Commentary


        aicpa's influence on tax form legistlation

        Speaking Up for a Better Tax System


        The AICPA's thought leadership is widely respected by policy makers and we have laid significant groundwork to help shape future tax reform legislation, including: 

        For a complete picture of the AICPA's contributions over the years, including testimony, white papers, and principles for good tax policy, we are developing a tax reform resource center that will be available in early SeptemberIf you need a specific item, please let us know.


        tax reform and small business taxpayers

        Tax Reform & the Small Business Taxpayer


        What's Going On?


        • The AICPA submitted written testimony to the House Small Business Committee on the Challenge of Retirement Savings for Small Employers.
        • The Senate Finance Committee released its business tax reform ideas that cite AICPA for suggestions such as a refundable research credit for small business.
        • The House Ways and Means Committee Chair issued several proposals that affect small business, such as a permanent Section 179 deduction.



        tax reform and the individual taxpayer

        Tax Reform & the Individual Taxpayer


        What's Going On?

        The Senate Finance Committee released a discussion draft geared toward families, individuals and businesses. Among the many proposals, the draft mentions:


        • Repeal of the AMT, Pease and Personal Exemption Phaseout provisions
        • Changing filing periods, venue appeals, and evidence rules to improve taxpayer access to courts

        A key reform need for individuals is education tax incentives - taxpayers must sort among 14 different ones, which are outlined in AICPA's explanation and solutions- practitioners may find this chart useful.


        Civil tax penalties


        Spotlight on Tax Penalties 


        Civil tax penalties have soared in recent years and the trend toward strict liability makes it difficult for taxpayers to get relief. An automatic $10,000 penalty for failing to report a foreign asset is only one example.

        "Many aspects of the civil tax penalty regime concern our members," the AICPA told Congress when it submitted a comprehensive set of recommendations that address several flaws in the penalty system, including:

        • Inconsistent application of reasonable cause relief;
        • Procedural due process erosion;
        • Lack of clear standards; and
        • Need to improve IRS training and education of taxpayers.


        A A A

        Copyright © 2006-2014 American Institute of CPAs.