Wednesday, March 3, 2010

"409A is not Horseshoes" - IRS Will Audit Wall Street Payouts

"The U.S. Internal Revenue Service is taking a look at compensation plans that hold a lot of the big money Wall Street firms pay out to executives. Major accounting firms and tax attorneys are instructing firms on how to prepare for a wave of audits they expect for deferred compensation plans. Executives themselves face stiff tax penalties when employers run afoul of the rules. Susan Lennon, managing director of the human resources service group at PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, predicts that IRS audits of deferred compensation plans will increase in "number and scope."

Section 409A went into full swing last year and the tax authority apparently wants to make sure employers are obeying it. There is still a lot of confusion on the part of companies and their tax advisors over how to comply. Nonetheless, an audit is a "very binary" process, according to Hogans. "This is not horseshoes," he said. "Close does not count, as a matter of pure legality.""

Article from Financial Advisor Magazine HERE


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