NewsFlash March 28, 2013
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It is with great sadness that we inform our members that Rep. Clay Ford Jr., 74, of Gulf Breeze passed away on March 18.
“Rep. Ford’s passing is a great loss to all,” said FICPA President/CEO Deborah Curry, CPA, CGMA. “He was a wonderful man and a staunch supporter of the FICPA. We were the better for having him in our lives.”
Rep. Ford sponsored FICPA-supported legislation during the 2011, 2012 and 2013 legislative sessions. He had served in the Florida House of Representatives since 2007 and previously served in the Arkansas House of Representatives in 1975 and 1976.
Rep. Ford was an attorney and a member of the Arkansas and Florida bars. He had a long military career that spanned 1955 to 1988 in active duty, Army Reserve and National Guard. He retired as a colonel.
Join the Campaign Promoting CPAs
The AICPA, the FICPA and other state societies are coming together to promote CPAs this tax season with a cohesive public awareness campaign via Twitter and Facebook. The AICPA has created a list of tweets for you to customize with your firm name and website.
Be a part of the campaign to get the word out about CPAs this tax season – click the link below to view the pre-written tweets, and share them with your firm administrator or marketing coordinator. Although these were written with Twitter in mind, they can be adapted to Facebook or other social media sites, too!
The FICPA also provides public service announcements, targeted to small businesses, for members to customize and use in their communications. Click below and sign in with your FICPA account to access the Member Marketing Kit.
Can Potential Clients Find You Easily?
If you aren’t currently listed in our “Find a CPA” directory, you should be!
The “Find a CPA” directory helps those searching for CPA services find our members and reach out to them as potential clients. It’s easy to sign up, and you can specify your firm’s expertise to attract targeted referrals.
This is just one of the many benefits of your FICPA membership. Click the link below to sign up for “Find a CPA,” or to update your current listing.
Committee Volunteer Deadline Fast Approaching
The deadline to join an FICPA committee is less than one month away! Your profession and association depend on your experience and volunteerism. Apply online quickly and easily. The deadline to apply is April 26, 2013 and appointments become effective July 1, 2013.
Taxpayers Get Late-payment Penalty Relief
The IRS announced that it will waive the penalty normally assessed for late payment of income tax for taxpayers who have requested an extension of time to file their return, and who are filing one of the 31 forms that were delayed until March because of the last-minute tax law changes in the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012, P.L. 112-240 (Notice 2013-24, which also contains a list of the 31 forms). But the IRS also warns that these taxpayers may receive an automatic assessment notice and demand for payment.
The IRS believes the late issuance of those 31 forms may prevent some taxpayers from being able to timely estimate and pay their 2012 tax liability when requesting an extension to file. Under the relief, the IRS will assume the taxpayer has demonstrated reasonable cause and lack of willful neglect if he or she makes a good-faith effort to properly estimate the tax liability on the extension application; pays the estimated amount by the original due date of the return; and fully pays any tax owed on the return no later than the return’s extended due date.
H&R Block Error Delays Returns
Taxpayers who used H&R Block software to claim a higher-education tax credit (American Opportunity Credit and Lifetime Learning Credit) on Form 8863 could experience tax-refund delays of up to six weeks because of a software omission.
The error involves an IRS change regarding the way it processes “yes” or “no” questions on Form 8863. H&R Block says that in previous years, it was acceptable to leave a field blank to indicate “no” on some questions, and the IRS now requires preparers to enter “N” for these fields. The software in question that H&R Block used left this mandatory field blank.
Because about 600,000 affected returns already have been filed, the IRS will have to identify and correct them. This reminds us of the importance of only using a licensed CPA!
AICPA Awards Florida High School in Competition
The AICPA awarded $15,000 in scholarships and grant money to the top three teams.
The AICPA has announced the winners of Project Innovation: the Start Here, Go Places. Competition of Creative Excellence. The competition challenged high school students to develop a hit T.V. show focused on the accounting profession. The winning team from Batavia, Ill. won $4,000 in scholarships and $3,000 in grant money for their school. Their submission focused on a fraud-detecting CPA who conducted secret investigations.
For more information about the finalists and their video submissions, visit the Start Here, Go Places. website.
Health Care Industry Conference
Provider organizations will have many opportunities to control and manage the risks they face during the transition to a value-based health care system. Learn to identify these opportunities, manage the risks and build value into your organization’s capabilities with our Friday morning panel:
The Future Value of Managing Populations, Employers, Employees and Risk (2 TB)
Reserve your seat for this in-demand panel and explore the other great sessions and speakers at this conference with the links below!
Florida State University
Don’t miss Dr. Norman Thagard, M.D., the lunch guest for this conference!
Norman Thagard, M.D., U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame member, will discuss his experience training and flying as the cosmonaut researcher for the 18th Primary Expedition to Russia’s MIR Space Station. Thagard is a distinguished lecturer for the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics; co-founder and executive director of the Challenger Learning Center of Tallahassee; and a tenured professor at the FAMU – FSU College of Engineering.
You’ll also get a review of industry standards and updates; updates on upcoming legislation; and tips for streamlining and protecting your business. Expand your network with FSU alumni and area professionals while getting 16 CPE credits at the 2013 Florida State University Spring Accounting Conference.
Microsoft Word does a decent job fixing common spelling mistakes with AutoCorrect. But sometimes you need to edit another person’s document, or write a quick draft and check spelling later. Here’s a quick tip to run a spell check using only the keyboard.
Press Alt + F7 on your keyboard and it will start with the first misspelled word. If the first highlighted word at the top of the list is correct, press Enter. Or arrow to the correct one, ignore it, or Add to Dictionary.
Press Alt + F7 again and it will go to the next misspelled word. If you like keeping your hands on your keyboard versus switching to your mouse, this makes correcting spelling mistakes in Word much easier.
This should work with every version of Word, starting with Microsoft Word 2003.
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Look for the next issue of FICPA NewsFlash April 11, 2013.
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LAST UPDATED 3/27/2013