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In this area you will find an archive of the most recent top stories featured on the home page of the FICPA Web site that we felt were informative enough to store for your future reference.

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FICPA Closed Labor Day
The FICPA will be closed for Labor Day on Monday, Sept. 7, 2015, and will reopen on Tuesday.
Lease Accounting Project Update: Great News for U.S. Banks
Bank lessors are the major players in the leasing industry both in the U.S. and in IFRS countries. They are both lessors and lessees. The news from the lease project is very good for U.S. bank lessors but not great for IFRS bank lessors. The FASB...
PCAOB Outlines Scope of Inspections of Broker-Dealer Auditors
The Public Company Accounting Oversight Board has published a staff inspection brief detailing the objectives, focus, and scope of its ongoing inspections in 2015 of auditors of brokers and dealers.
FASB Proposes GAAP Taxonomy Changes for 2016
The Financial Accounting Standards Board released the proposed 2016 GAAP Financial Reporting Taxonomy for public review and comment Tuesday. The proposed 2016 taxonomy contains updates for accounting standards and other recommended improvements...
Internal Revenue Service Sued By Taxpayers Over Data Breach
The Internal Revenue Service must answer in court for a data breach in which hackers gained access to personal identifying data belonging to at least 330,000 people. Two Texas women sued the agency Thursday in Washington, complaining that...
Changes proposed for CPA exam would enhance higher-order skills testing
Florida Health Care Premiums to increase 9.5% in 2016
Are Nano-Learning CPE Programs the Future of CPAs?
The path to CFO Doesn’t Run Through CAO
Beware Accounting Loopholes for Pre-IPO Companies
Tech Tips: Windows 10 Privacy Settings Worth Checking
BP Settlement Money Flows To Far-flung Places
Clusters of landlocked municipalities more than 100 miles from the Gulf Coast have secured millions of dollars in BP money through settlements designed to compensate local governments for lost tourism dollars and other economic damage from the...
Which Florida County Has The Most Foreclosures? See Our Map
Foreclosure filings in Palm Beach County fell 26 percent from July 2014 to July 2015, research firm RealtyTrac said in a report released today. The company counted 1,396 foreclosure filings last month. While the year-over-year number was down,...
How To ... Spot An Embezzler At Your Company
Becky Bokrand can’t discuss a recent case she turned over to the Federal Bureau of Investigations, but she’s seen her share of embezzlers.
Tax Court Rules Support Payments Weren’t Taxable Alimony
The Tax Court has held that the “unallocated alimony/child support payments” by a doctor to his ex-wife were non-taxable because the divorce agreement didn‘t specify that the liability to make the payments survived the death of...
SEC Proposes Rule on “Clawback” Policies
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently issued a proposed rule¹ aimed at ensuring that executives do not receive “excess compensation” if the financial results on which previous awards of compensation were based are...
Nonprofit Overseeing 75% of FLA BP Recovery Funds
Triumph Gulf Coast, Inc. has yet to receive a dime of the $1.5 billion, but a standing room only crowd of about 100 filled the Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort Bayside Ballroom on Monday morning for its inaugural meeting. The nonprofit...
IRS Says Criminals Actually Stole Data On 330,000 -- Three-times More Than Previously Believed
In May, the government agency said criminals used a tool on the IRS website to steal the tax forms of 104,000 people. It has revised that number up to 330,000.
What Employers Need To Know About Protections For LGBT Employees
The legal rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) citizens is a topic that has dominated the headlines in recent weeks.
Governor Scott Declares State Of Emergency For Tampa Bay
Florida Gov. Rick Scott declared a state of emergency for Dixie, Hillsborough, Pasco, Pinellas, and Taylor counties in response to heavy rains that have inundated the Tampa Bay region.
Attorney General Bondi Activates Price Gouging Hotline In Five Florida Counties
Attorney General Pam Bondi today activated Florida’s price gouging hotline for consumers in five Florida counties affected by severe weather and flooding. The opening of the hotline comes as Governor Rick Scott declares a state of emergency...
Florida CFO Atwater Says State 'Poised For Growth'
Republican state Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater on Thursday said "at this point" he's not considering a run for another political office in 2016. "Might there be something down the road? There might be. But we're not focused on it," said...
NOAA Downgrades The Chance Of Hurricanes This Season
The summer's relatively quiet hurricane season is highly likely to linger, said Gerry Bell, lead hurricane forecaster for NOAA's Climate Prediction Center in College Park, Maryland. With no hurricanes and little to investigate in the way of...
Two Years After Scandal, IRS Still Struggling
The Senate Finance Committee on Wednesday released a bipartisan report on the 2013 scandal involving the Internal Revenue Service targeting conservative groups. Much was made about what led to the controversy, but more than two years later the...
IRS And Treasury Say No More Lump-sum Offers
The Internal Revenue Service and the Treasury have done a wonderful thing. They announced last month that they intend to amend regulations in order to prohibit companies from “de-risking” their defined benefit plans by offering a...
Retailers Pitch Extended Back-to-school Tax Break For Next Year
A longer than usual back-to-school tax holiday gets underway Friday, and a lobbying arm for retailers is already making plans to sell lawmakers on keeping the extended discount period next year. The Florida Retail Federation also is eyeing a...
Ask the CPAs: How to Survive a Sales and Use Tax Audit
The dreaded Form DR-840 Notice of Intent to Audit Books and Records for Sales and Use Tax from the Florida Department of Revenue– we’ve been seeing more and more of these lately. What can you do to prevent one? And what should you do...
How To Know When To Classify A Worker As An Employee Or An Independent Contractor
At first glance, it may seem like an easy decision for an employer to make.
Florida Leads The Nation In Job Creation
Governor Rick Scott says the state is continuing to see tremendous economic growth with more than 266,000 new jobs created in the last 12 months. Orlando International Airport -- and others in the state -- are factors in economic growth,...
Companies Have Found Something To Give Their Workers Instead Of Raises
Once a staple of the American workplace, the annual raise is turning into a relic of the pre-crisis economy as companies turn to creative — and cheaper — ways to compensate their employees. More businesses are upping their spending...
How New Independent Contractor Standards Affect Your Business
The Department of Labor (DOL) recently released a 15-page memo describing its standards for determining whether a worker is an employee or an independent contractor. Worker classification affects whether businesses must provide overtime and...
According To Data, South Florida Is Tops In Fraud
Since the first settlers hacked their way into the mangrove tangles and drained much of the swampland, sunny South Florida has been virtually synonymous with shady deals and scams.
Florida Business Climate: Sigh
The business climate in Florida for entrepreneurs is a tad better than mediocre, according to new report. Related Headlines: Expensive vacations, cheap travel Old name gets refreshed Scam puts online auctions in limbo Reach High The fourth...
BP Payouts To Local Governments To Start Soon
A federal judge says BP will begin paying up to $1 billion in settlements to compensate local governments across the Gulf Coast for lost tax revenue and other economic damages they blame on the company's 2010 oil spill....
Resumption Of U.S.-Cuba Relations Isn't Expected To Set Off A Business Stampede
With embassies now open in each country, it might seem that Cuba and the United States are ready to do business with each other. But there are still many barriers. Not only is a trade embargo still in effect, but businesses also are proceeding...
Federal Tax Implications For Same-sex Spouses
Same-sex marriages are now recognized for federal tax purposes. United States v. Windsor, is an important court case. The Supreme Court changed federal laws interpreting the meaning of "marriage" and "spouse" to a to include same-sex couples.
Fla. Sales Tax Holiday Is Aug. 7-16
School starts Aug.10 in Jackson County, but last-minute shoppers (and retailers) are in luck this year. Florida’s extended back-to-school sales tax holiday will kick off Friday, Aug. 7 and continue through the first week of classes, ending...
IASB Follows FASB in 1-Year Delay on Revenue Recognition Standard
The International Accounting Standards Board confirmed Wednesday a one-year deferral of the effective date of the revenue recognition standard to stay in alignment with the Financial Standards Accounting Board, which also recently decided to...
Why Paperwork Is Worth Millions To Florida College Students
It’s a midweek school night at Miami Beach Senior High School. Students, their parents and siblings — roughly 80 people in all — are waiting in the school’s library to get on a computer and answer a lot of...
Use The Backdoor Roth IRA While You Still Can
Few investors appreciate just how revolutionary the Roth IRA was when it first became available almost two decades ago. Traditionally, retirement accounts have been a method of deferring taxable income, with contributions to traditional IRAs and...
Dozens Of Expired Tax Breaks Would Get Renewed Under Bill
Businesses big and small would get to keep claiming dozens of tax breaks that expired at the start of the year under a bill that overwhelmingly passed the Senate Finance Committee Tuesday. Struggling homeowners and people who live in states...
Florida Among Top States With Fastest Job Growth
The Sunshine State is ripe with opportunity when it comes to the job market, according to Kiplinger magazine. Florida was ranked one of the top 10 states expected to see the fastest employment gains in 2015. The state’s job market this...
Affordable Care Act Becoming Less Affordable as Florida Insurers Prepare Big Rate Hikes
The U.S. Supreme Court may have upheld the Affordable Care Act for the second time, but the ruling hasn’t made President Barack Obama’s signature healthcare law any less controversial.
Two-thirds Of Calls To IRS Went Unanswered During Tax Season
Nearly two-thirds of calls routed to customer service representatives with the IRS during tax season went unanswered, and those who did get through were on hold for on average 23 minutes, a new report issued to Congress this week said.
Unknowns Loom As Governments Settle With BP
Several local governments approved large cash settlements with oil giant BP for economic development losses linked to the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill. But how much money many of them will get hasn’t been released — and BP could...
What The Delay Of FASB's Revenue Recognition Standard Means
On July 9, the Financial Accounting Standards Board voted to defer the effective date of its revenue recognition standard by a year, while still allowing companies to adopt the standard as initially planned.
Watch Out! Five Ways ObamaCare Will Impact Your Business In The Next Two Years
Just last week three small business owners told a Senate hearing that the Affordable Care Act (ACA or ObamaCare as we know it) is "riddled with problems that are leading to more expensive insurance policies, which is making it harder for...
Misty Martin Servia Files To Run For Dave Miner's Manatee County School Board Seat
The first candidate to announce for the Manatee County School Board District 3 seat has filed the necessary paperwork with the elections office. Misty Martin Servia, a 51-year-old planning department manager at King Engineering Associates and a...
Florida To Swear In First Female State Auditor General
Florida is getting its first female state auditor general. Sherrill Norman will be sworn in Wednesday as the state’s sixth Auditor General, a constitutional officer who serves as the state’s independent auditor. She will replace...
What The Ruling On Subsidies Means For Florida
On Thursday morning, the Supreme Court announced a ruling in the case of King v. Burwell, which upholds the subsidies awarded to Floridians who enrolled in coverage through healthcare.gov. Over the last few months, policymakers, health care...
Florida Retailers Expect A Back-to-school Boom With 10-day Sales-tax Holiday
Florida retailers are expecting a busy August as shoppers across the Sunshine State take advantage of a 10-day sales-tax holiday. Last week, the Legislature voted to extend the back-to-school tax holiday to 10 days, a large increase from the...
No One Said Accounting Standards Are Easy But This Is Ridiculous
In the Wall Street Journal recently Art Garcia, CFO for Ryder System, said out loud what probably every finance executive has been thinking for the last year: Why can't regulators put both the forthcoming revenue-recognition and lease-accounting...
Can Anything Save Us From Accounting Standards Madness?
In part one of this article we looked at the complicated issues surrounding accounting and how they are increasingly affecting non-accounting real estate decisions. To sum up its conclusion: it's a mess and getting messier as key standards...
See Where Florida Ranks Among 'America's Top States For Business'
In newly released rankings by CNBC of "America's Top States for Business," Florida came in at No. 16. All 50 states were scored on more than 60 measures of competitiveness, developed with input from business and policy experts, government...
Sherrill Norman To Be Sworn In As State Auditor General
Ms. Sherrill Norman will be sworn in as Florida’s new Auditor General on Wednesday, July 1, 2015. The ceremony will begin at 2:00 p.m. in the atrium of the Claude Pepper Building (111 West Madison Street, Tallahassee). A reception will...
2015 Poised To Be Best Year For M&A Since Financial Crisis, According To PwC
Coming off a historic year for mergers and acquisitions (M&A), the U.S. retains its position among the most attractive markets for investments. As such, dealmaking during first half of 2015 has reflected a buoyant U.S. M&A market which is...
Court Decision Holds Fate Of 1.3m Floridians
The Supreme Court, in King v. Burwell, will soon decide whether more than a million Floridians will lose subsidies they rely on to buy insurance on HealthCare.gov.
Florida Gov. Oks More Than $400 Million Tax Cut Package
Florida Gov. Rick Scott is moving quickly to approve a more than $400 million tax cut package. Scott on Tuesday signed into law a tax cut bill that the Florida Legislature approved a day earlier.
What Florida's Rejection Of Medicaid Expansion Means To Your Business
Under state lawmakers' new plan, about $2 billion will go to nearly 200 hospitals in Florida to help cover the cost of treating the uninsured. The state's plan includes using $400 million in state tax revenue to fund the Low Income Pool. The...
Governor Rick Scott Appoints Patrick T. Hogan to Board of Directors of Florida ABLE, Inc.
Today, Governor Rick Scott announced the appointment of Patrick T. Hogan to the Board of Directors of Florida ABLE, Inc. Hogan, 47, of Bradenton, is the managing shareholder of Hogan Legal Services. He is currently a member of the Florida...
Floridians To Get 10-day Sales Tax Holiday
Floridians will get a 10-day tax break on school supplies, computers and clothes under a more than $400 million tax cut package approved by the Florida Legislature. The Senate on Monday passed the tax cut bill by a 34-2 margin. The Florida House...
Exclusive: U.S.-Cuba Deal Expected In Early July To Restore Ties, Reopen Embassies
The Obama administration is expected to announce an agreement with Cuba in early July to reopen embassies and restore diplomatic relations severed more than five decades ago, U.S. sources familiar with the matter said on Friday. The two sides...
Gus Bilirakis Proposes Tax Credits For Hurricane, Tornado Readiness
With hurricane season upon us, U.S. Rep. Gus Bilirakis, R-Fla., brought out the “Strengthening Homes and Eliminating Liabilities Through Encouraging Readiness” (SHELTER) Act on Friday. The proposed legislation would give tax credits...
The Downside Of Treadmill Desks
Treadmill desks are popular, even aspirational, in many offices today since they can help those of us who are deskbound move more, burn extra calories and generally improve our health.
RPOF's Second In Command Running For Legislature
The second highest ranking official in the state Republican Party is hoping to join the top ranking officer in the Florida Legislature next year. Sarasota Republican Joe Gruters, the vice chairman of the Republican Party of Florida, officially...
Lawmakers Close To Ending State Budget Battles
Lawmakers kicked-off final budget talks Saturday afternoon, making quick progress on the biggest issue that forced a special legislative session and promising to have a spending plan hammered out by early next week. The state’s regular...
House Releases Special Session Calendar
Monday, June 1 1:00 p.m. Special Session convenes 3:00 p.m. Workshop on the substance of CS/SB 7044 (2015) All members will be invited to this workshop hosted by the House Health and Human Services Committee Tuesday, June 2 9:00 a.m. Finance...
Health Law's Disputed Phrase May Have Been An Oversight
They are only four words in a 900-page law: "established by the state." Related News/Archive At USF visit, Obama official talks up health care law 6 Months Ago Report: Many Florida children still have no health insurance 6 Months Ago CDC...
Benefits of Establishing Long-Term Relationship with CPA
A CPA is more than just a person who does your taxes. In this Money Matters Report, Time Warner Cable News’ Tara Lynn Wagner explains why you might want to make them a more vital member of your team.
CPA Firm Administrators Wear Many Hats
Thirty-five years ago, Celia Cue was the first hire at Miami CPA firm Berkowitz Pollack Brant Advisors and Accountants. During those early years, Celia did a little bit of everything while serving as administrative assistant to firm CEO Richard...
Retirement: What The New Congress Has In Store
Exactly what do they have in store for older Americans and retirees? Are changes to Social Security and Medicare on the table, as some activists wonder? And, are changes in store for the tax advantages of our retirement savings accounts, like...