Latest IRS Updates and News Releases

IRS Webinar Series: Affordable Care Act Provisions for Employers and Coverage Providers

If you’re an employer or health coverage provider, you can attend a series of educational webinars this summer to help you understand the Affordable Care Act’s employer provisions and related requirements. The IRS is presenting three different webinars in July that will each be repeated in August and September.


Employer Shared Responsibility and Information Reporting

Learn about the ACA’s employer shared responsibility provisions and information reporting requirements for employers and providers of minimum essential coverage.

Employer-Sponsored Health Coverage Information Reporting Requirements for Applicable Large Employers

Learn about employer-sponsored health coverage information reporting requirements for applicable large employers, including who is required to report, what information the law requires you to report, and how to complete the required forms.

Information Reporting Requirements for Providers of Minimal Essential Coverage

Learn about the information reporting requirements for providers of minimum essential coverage, including employers that provide self-insured coverage.  Learn who is required to report, what information the law requires you to report, and how to complete the required forms.


SBIR Road Tour: America's Largest Seed Fund is Coming to Seattle Aug. 19

With $2.5 billion in funding provided annually to small advanced technology firms, the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs help spur new technological discoveries and facilitate the commercialization of innovations. The SBIR Road Tour is an opportunity for historically underserved communities to engage with Federal Program Officers from various SBIR/STTR agencies. If you’re an innovator, entrepreneur, researcher, or small technology firm, take advantage of this coveted local opportunity to hear directly from federal agency program managers, and meet one-on-one with program decision makers.


The SBIR Road Tour will stop in Seattle:

Wednesday, August 19
8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Startup Hall
1100 NE Campus Parkway #200 | Seattle, WA 98105
Cost: $20 ($30 after July 19)
Registration required: 


SBA Disaster Loans Available for Washington Counties Affected by Drought

New drought declarations have led to the expansion of SBA Disaster Loans in Washington and neighboring Idaho counties. The following is a list of all drought declarations made for Washington this summer:

Declaration 14379-01 WA effective July 16 -- primary Washington counties include Ferry, Okanogan, Pend Oreille, Spokane and Stevens; neighboring Washington counties include Chelan, Douglas, Grant, Lincoln, Skagit, Whatcom and Whitman.

Declaration 14367-01 WA effective July 2 -- primary Washington counties include Garfield and Kittitas; neighboring Washington counties include Asotin, Chelan, Columbia, Douglas, Grant, King, Pierce, Whitman, and Yakima.

Declaration 14356-01 WA effective June 25 -- primary Washington counties include Adams, Benton, Columbia, Franklin, Grant, Klickitat, Walla Walla and Yakima; neighboring Washington counties include Douglas, Garfield, King, Kittitas, Lewis, Lincoln, Okanogan, Pierce, Skamania and Whitman.


For more information on disaster preparation, assistance and recovery, visit the Emergency Preparedness page on the SBA website.


Small Business Workshops – Seattle SBA Education and Training Center
Navigating Federal Business Taxes - 2nd Thursday of each month - 9:00 am to 10:00 am

What you need to know to start and sustain your company without being so focused on your tax return.  In this class you will learn the types of entity structures and their tax effects, important requirements for specific deductions like meals and entertainment and home office and how to choose your tax preparer.


Licensing and Registration:  What You Need To Know - 2nd Thursday of each month - 10:30 to 11:30 am

Once you've chosen your business entity (limited liability company, corporation, sole proprietor, etc.), then it's time to register and license your business. Hear what steps you need to take with the Secretary of State's Office and Business Licensing Services.        

Workshops are held at the 4th & Battery Building - 2401 Fourth Avenue, Suite 450, Seattle

Please pre-register by calling 206-553-2664 or e-mail

SBA and SCORE also offer a variety of other workshops for small business owners – find out more here:


Seattle SCORE Workshops

SCORE offers workshops designed to give you the skills necessary to start your own successful business.

Aug 5 -- Starting a New Business

Aug 7 – Understanding Financial Statements

4th & Battery Building - 2401 Fourth Avenue, Suite 450, Seattle


Affordable Care Act 101 Webinars for Small Business

The SBA and Small Business Majority are holding weekly Affordable Care Act 101 webinars. During the presentation, small business owners can learn about the law and what it means for their company and employees.  Visit the web page above for a complete schedule and to register. Webinars are also offered in Spanish. See the page above for dates and to register.


Employer's Introduction to L&I Workshops

This workshop is designed for new businesses or businesses that plan to hire workers for the first time. It explains an employer’s rights and responsibilities and provides an overview of the services and resources available at Labor and Industries.

July 29 – Tumwater -- 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Aug 5 --   Tukwila -- 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Aug 12 – Port Angeles -- 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Sept 9 -- Tacoma   9 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Sept 22 -- Mount Vernon -- 9 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Sept 29 -- Yakima-- 9 a.m. - 12 p.m.


New Business Tax Workshops – Washington State Department of Revenue

Learn the basics of Washington State taxes. This free workshop will help you understand your tax reporting responsibilities. Tax reporting classifications, deductions, sales tax collection, and recordkeeping requirements will be discussed. You'll also have the opportunity to ask questions regarding taxes that apply specifically to your business. To find out when the next workshop will be held in your area, and to register, see the link above.  Can’t attend a workshop in person? Watch an online workshop or tutorial.


IRS Updates & News Releases:

Did you know? One of the best ways to get information is by visiting the IRS Small Business Tax Center where you can learn everything from how to get an Employer Identification Number (EIN) online to how to best navigate an audit.


New Tangible Property Regulations; Simplified Option Available to Many Small Businesses

Federal law allows taxpayers to deduct all the ordinary and necessary expenses they incur during the taxable year in carrying on their trade or business, including the costs of certain materials, supplies, repairs, and maintenance. However, taxpayers are required to capitalize the costs of acquiring, producing, and improving tangible property, regardless of the size or the cost incurred.  In 2013, the Internal Revenue Service issued final regulations clarifying how federal tax law applies to tangible property. In general, the new rules apply to taxable years beginning on or after Jan. 1, 2014. For most taxpayers, this means the returns they file during 2015 and later years. Earlier this year, the IRS also developed a special simplified procedure available to many small businesses. A set of questions and answers, posted on, can help interested taxpayers and tax preparers better understand the tangible property regulations and the simplified option for small business. Further details on the simplified option can also be found in Revenue Procedure 2015-20.


National Taxpayer Advocate Reviews Filing Season and Identifies Priority Areas and Challenges in Mid-Year Report to Congress

National Taxpayer Advocate Nina E. Olson released her mid-year report to Congress that identifies the priority issues the Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS) will address during the upcoming fiscal year, including the IRS’s long-term strategic planning, tax-related identity theft and administration of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), and presents highlights of the recently concluded filing season.


The report says the IRS ran a generally successful filing season under difficult circumstances.  “With funding down about 17 percent on an inflation-adjusted basis since FY 2010, and with the IRS having had to implement large portions of the [ACA] and the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) this year without any supplemental funding, sharp declines in taxpayer service were inevitable,” Olson wrote.  Likening the 2015 filing season to “A Tale of Two Cities,” however, the report says:  “For the majority of taxpayers who filed their returns and did not require IRS assistance, the filing season was generally successful.  For the segment of taxpayers who required help from the IRS, the filing season was by far the worst in memory.”


See the article for more from the report, or see the full report here:


IRS, Industry, States Take New Steps Together to Fight Identity Theft, Protect Taxpayers

The IRS joined today with representatives of tax preparation and software firms, payroll and tax financial product processors and state tax administrators to announce a sweeping new collaborative effort to combat identity theft refund fraud and protect the nation's taxpayers.

Also see:

Security Summit: Protecting Taxpayers from Identity Theft Tax Refund Fraud -


IRS Spotlights Year-Round Tax Help in 6 Languages

The IRS has a wide range of publications and online resources available in Chinese, Korean, Russian and Vietnamese, as well as English and Spanish, on To access these multilingual online resources, open the “Language” option in the top right-hand corner of or look for the “Other Languages” section at the bottom of each page of the website.


Small Businesses Can Get IRS Penalty Relief for Unfiled Retirement Plan Returns

Eligible small businesses that did not file certain retirement plan returns can take advantage of a low-cost penalty relief program enabling them to quickly come back into compliance. The program is designed to help small businesses that may have been unaware of the reporting requirements that apply to their retirement plans.  Find the details on how to participate in Revenue Procedure 2015-32 on


Empowerment Zone Designations Continue Through the End of 2014

Businesses and other entities can rely on empowerment zone designations being available through the end of 2014.


Nearly 44,000 Tax Return Preparers Completed the First Voluntary Education Program Offered by the IRS to Prepare for the 2015 Filing Season,000-Tax-Return-Preparers-Completed-the-First-Voluntary-Education-Program-Offered-by-the-IRS-to-Prepare-for-the-2015-Filing-Season

The Internal Revenue Service said nearly 44,000 tax return preparers participated in the Annual Filing Season Program in its first year. The voluntary program was announced a year ago and designed to encourage continuing education (CE) and filing season readiness.


The Electronic Tax Administration Advisory Committee Issued Its 2015 Annual Report

ETAAC is an advisory committee to the entire IRS. ETAAC’s primary purpose is to provide an organized public forum of relevant electronic tax administration issues for Congress to discuss relevant electronic issues.


Sign Up for IRS Summertime Tax Tips

Taxpayers interested in receiving helpful consumer tips this summer to get a jump start on this year’s taxes should consider joining the more than 660,000 subscribers who already receive IRS Tax Tips. Starting July 1, the IRS began offering its Summertime Tax Tip series which include useful information in English and Spanish. Tax Tip subscribers receive a new Tip via email three times a week during July and August. IRS Tax Tips are plain language messages that are easy to understand and cover a wide range of topics. They often include links to helpful references, IRS YouTube videos and podcasts.


Tax Tips

Visit this page for the latest IRS tax tips.  Here is a sample of the tips available:


Five Tax Tips about Hobbies that Earn Income

Ten Things to Know about Identity Theft and Your Taxes

If You Get an IRS Notice, Here’s What to Do

Surf the Net to this Summer

How to Get Tax Help “en Español”


Health Care Tax Tips

Check out the tax tips for your health care questions on this page.


Get to Know the Health Care Law’s Employer Shared Responsibility Payment

Webinar Series offered on Affordable Care Act Provisions for Employers and Coverage Providers

Self-Insured Employers Must File Health Coverage Information Returns

Affordable Care Act and Employers: Understanding Affordable and Minimum Value Coverage

Get to Know the Small Business Health Care Tax Credit

Online Tool Helps Individuals and Employers Estimate Health Care Law Credits and Payments

File Your 2014 Tax Return Now to Receive Timely Advance Payments in 2016


Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) Marketplace

The Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) Marketplace helps small businesses provide health coverage to their employees. The SHOP Marketplace is open to employers with 50 or fewer full-time equivalent employees (FTEs). This includes non-profit organizations. You can enroll in SHOP any time of year - there’s no restricted enrollment period. For more information, visit


There are guides, an archived webinar and other resources available here:

The Affordable Care Act and Employers
Information on Key Tax Provisions Affecting Employers