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Thursday, January 18, 2018

MT Dept of Revenue Announcements for Income Tax Filing, Business Property & Livestock Reporting

Montana Department of Revenue has rolled out their new website and announced several cost saving measures that could impact the way you have traditionally completed your filings.

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*2018 Income Tax Filing Options*

 

No Printed Booklets
To save taxpayer dollars and administer tax law within state budget constraints, the Montana Department of Revenue no longer prints and distributes income tax booklets.

E-Filing Options

We encourage Montana income taxpayers to file electronically. People can visit revenue.mt.gov to find free e-filing options. New this year, Montana has joined the Free File Alliance, a coordinated effort by the IRS, state tax departments like the Montana Department of Revenue, and software vendors to offer free electronic filing options. This free electronic filing alternative replaces e-filing through the TransAction Portal (TAP) offered in previous years.

Download forms through MyRevenue

For taxpayers who prefer filing on paper, The department created a new website application called MyRevenue to help users easily find forms to download and print. MyRevenue provides a guided search, keyword search and a directory of all revenue forms and instructions. Users can access MyRevenue from the department's homepage at revenue.mt.gov.
For more information, visit revenue.mt.gov, call (406) 444-6900 or email DORCustomerAssistance@mt.gov.


*Personal Property (Business Equipment) Reporting*

Reporting forms will not be mailed this year and you will need to report your personal property (business equipment) online with TAP.

Personal property includes:
  • Business equipment
  • Mining and manufacturing machinery
  • Agricultural implements and equipment
  • Furniture
  • Fixtures
  • All other property not included in any other property class
Detailed lists of equipment by category can be found on the Personal Property Equipment List:
Furniture, Fixtures, and Miscellaneous Equipment
Heavy Equipment
Manufacturing and Mining Equipment
Farm and Ranch Equipment
Oil and Gas Equipment

Please note: Property that has been “depreciated out” for income tax purposes is still taxable for property tax purposes.
 
Reporting
Any property you own, possess, or control at midnight on January 1 is taxable for that year. Please report your personal property in our TransAction Portal before March 1 to avoid a penalty equal to 20% of the depreciated personal property value.

One of our employees might visit your business, agricultural operation, or field site to make sure our information is accurate and answer your questions. 

Paying Personal Property Tax
The elected county treasurer in each county bills and collects personal property tax. The Department of Revenue does not bill or collect personal property tax.
 
 
*Livestock Reporting Deadline March 1*
The Montana Department of Revenue will be mailing 2018 livestock reporting forms January 8, 2018, to livestock owners who need to meet upcoming reporting and payment deadlines.

About 18,500 livestock owners who reported last year will receive reporting forms. All livestock owners need to report by March 1, 2018, any livestock they own as of February 1. Livestock owners can file online at ReportYourLivestock.mt.gov or submit the hardcopy form.

"The department wants to make it more convenient for livestock owners to report their livestock and pay their fees," said Director Mike Kadas, Montana Department of Revenue. "The online system is efficient and secure, which makes it easier for livestock owners to do business in Montana."

Livestock owners who have not reported in the past need to report online or fill out a reporting form available from revenue.mt.gov or their local Department of Revenue office.

Livestock per capita fees are due May 31. Livestock owners who do not pay their per capita fees when they report will receive their bill in early May.

For more information, visit ReportYourLivestock.mt.gov or call us at (406) 444-6900.

Monday, January 15, 2018

Government Announces Reduced UCR Fees for Interstate Carriers

 (ATLANTA – January 5, 2018) – The federal government today announced reduced annual fees for commercial carriers required by law to participate in the Unified Carrier Registration Plan (UCR). The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), which has oversight of UCR, published the final rulemaking (https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/newsroom/fees-unified-carrier-registration-plan-and-agreement). The new fees go into effect immediately.
 

The UCR Act, established in 2005, requires motor carriers involved in interstate commerce, and other businesses subject to The Act, to submit annual fees based on fleet size to supplement funding for state highway motor carrier registration and safety programs.

The fee reduction for 2018, totaling about 9%, was based on a recommendation from the UCR Board of Directors following several years of higher than expected collections. “We’re pleased with the outcome of FMCSA’s rulemaking on this matter,” said UCR Board Chair Avelino Gutierrez, director of transportation at the New Mexico Public Regulation Commission. “And pleased that we could help deliver a cost reduction next year for our carrier partners.”


The Indiana Department of Revenue, which operates the national UCR online registration system on behalf of the UCR Board of Directors, expects to be ready to handle registrations later today. The Indiana site, which carriers based in any state may use to register, is here: www.ucr.in.gov. Several other states maintain their own UCR systems; at least some of these may require a few days before they accept 2018 registrations.


State enforcement of the UCR registration requirements commonly begins January 1. Since the 2018 registration has had to be delayed several months, however, the UCR Board is requesting states not to enforce until 90 days after the fees go into effect; that is, not until April 5, 2018. The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance, the association of motor carrier enforcement agencies, has adopted this position.

About UCR The UCR Plan is the organization of state, federal and industry representatives responsible for developing, implementing and administering the UCR Agreement.  The UCR Agreement is the interstate agreement, developed under the UCR Plan, governing the collection and distribution of registration information and fees generated under the UCR Agreement.  


Wednesday, January 10, 2018

MT Motor Fuel Tax Refund Changes Effective January 1, 2018




The 2017 Montana legislature passed House Bill 466 which makes DIESEL purchased at the pump (within 50 miles of applicant’s agricultural operation) with a credit or debit card, eligible for a partial refund of the Montana tax to persons qualified for the refund based on agricultural use.  Because the refund application requires you to submit the original of the purchase, you will need to keep the receipt you print out from the pump.  Keeping the receipt will be a bit of a hassle, but will make a big difference on your refund.

MCA 15-70-430 allows an estimated (standard deduction) amount of fuel eligible for refund based on applicant’s agricultural income. The department may request state or federal income tax information from the applicant or the department of revenue to determine eligibility. To qualify, at least 30% of an applicant’s gross earned income must be from operations directly associated with farming and/or ranching.
**Effective January 1, 2018, credit or debit card purchases for diesel fuel are eligible for refund under the estimate allowed for agricultural use. Only credit or debit card purchases made within 50 miles of the applicant’s agricultural operation are eligible and receipts identifying the purchase as a credit or debit card transaction must be submitted with the application to support the claim.
MCA 15-70-432 requires that all applications for refunds be filed within 36 months of the date of purchase of the tax paid fuel.
MCA 15-70-434 allows the department 120 working days after receiving a refund claim to approve or reject it.

Agricultural use means use of gasoline and/or clear diesel, by a person who earns income while engaging in the business of farming or ranching and who files farm or income reports for tax purposes as required by the United States internal revenue service.

Gross Earned Agricultural or farm income
means all taxable income and wages, before expenses, a person or business receives from: cultivating, operating, or managing a farm for gain or profit, either as owner or tenant; operating a livestock, dairy, poultry, fish, fur-bearing animals, or horticultural commodities business; operating a feed yard for the fattening of cattle; operating a fruit or truck farm; operating an agricultural commodities business; operating a plantation, ranch, range, nursery or orchard; and sale of crop shares if the person materially participates in producing the crop.

"Gross earned Non-AG income" means all taxable income and wages, before expenses, a person or business earns from non-agricultural activity such as: Custom hire, fuel tax refunds, real estate rental, pasture/farm rental (unless you materially participate, and file taxes that confirm your material participation) and equipment rental.

To support your claim for refund, you must submit your original bulk delivery invoices, original or copies of your cardtrol statements, and/or original or copies of your credit and debit card receipts (diesel only) issued at the time of each purchase.

All information listed below is required on an invoice or receipt to be eligible for a motor fuel tax refund and must be filled out at the time of purchase and delivery. If any information is missing, the applicant may provide a copy of the corresponding billing statement with the original invoice/receipt that supports the missing information. No altered or corrected invoice/receipt will be accepted for refund purposes. Invoices/receipts altered in any way must be voided and a new invoice/receipt issued by the dealer. The name on the invoices/receipts must exactly match the name on the application. If there is any variance, the applicant must list alternate names and/or DBA information box on front page of refund form or the invoice/receipt will not be accepted. Each invoice, receipt, cardtrol statement and accompanying billing statement collectively must contain or show the following:
                a) name and address of seller;
                b) name or account number of purchaser;
                c) complete date of delivery or purchase;
                d) type of fuel; 
                e) number of gallons purchased; 
                f) price per gallon or total amount of sale; 
                g) Any person who requests a refund or credit of motor fuel tax must have satisfactory evidence that the Montana motor fuel tax was included in the total price paid. Examples: “All taxes included in the price or a breakdown of taxes charged”, etc.

For additional information, contact the Montana Department of Transportation http://www.mdt.mt.gov/   Operator: 406-444-6200

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

IRS Delays Release of 2018 Withholding Tables


IRS - December 26, 2017 :


The IRS is working to develop withholding guidance to implement the tax reform bill signed into law on December 22.  We anticipate issuing the initial withholding guidance in January, and employers and payroll service providers will be encouraged to implement the changes in February. The IRS emphasizes this information will be designed to work with the existing Forms W-4 that employees have already filed, and no further action by taxpayers is needed at this time.

Use of the new 2018 withholding guidelines will allow taxpayers to begin seeing the changes in their paychecks as early as February.  In the meantime, employers and payroll service providers should continue to use the existing 2017 withholding tables and systems.

For more information or to follow this news alert, visit