American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 Alerts

January 2013

Below is a collection of Alerts written by firm attorneys following the passage of the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 ("ATRA") on January 1, 2013.

American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012: Tax Implications for U.S. Taxpayers Living Abroad

Although the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 ("Fiscal Cliff Legislation") passed last week does not contain any sweeping changes targeted at U.S. taxpayers living abroad, a number of provisions are relevant to such U.S. taxpayers - in particular, the sections dealing with income tax rates, itemized deductions (including the deduction permitted for foreign taxes not claimed as a credit against U.S. tax), personal exemptions, limits on itemized deductions, the alternative minimum tax and payroll taxes.

To read a brief summary of some of the more pertinent sections, please click here.

Charitable Giving Under the New Tax Law: A Unique (But Brief) Opportunity for IRA Rollovers and Other Highlights

The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 enacted in Washington last week creates a unique opportunity for charitable giving. Individuals with IRAs who have attained age 70½ may make a tax-free rollover to charity of up to $200,000, if they act during January 2013.

To read more about charitable giving opportunities under the ATRA, please click here.

Estate Planning Implications of the Fiscal Cliff Deal

After a last-minute deal to avoid the fiscal cliff was passed by Congress on January 1, 2013, President Obama signed into law the new American Taxpayer Relief Act (“ATRA 2012”) on January 2, 2013. ATRA 2012 extends indefinitely the historically large Federal gift, estate, and generation-skipping transfer (GST) tax exemptions, while introducing a modest increase in top rates for those taxes.

To read more about estate planning implications, please click here.

Fiscal Cliff Legislation - Employee Benefits and Compensation Provisions of Interest

Earlier this month we notified you that that under the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012—i.e., the “fiscal cliff legislation”—Congress extended the ability of employers to pay or reimburse an employee on a tax-free basis for up to $5,250 in educational assistance (which does not have to be job-related) under a written plan of the employer. (See "Tax-Free Employee Educational Assistance Programs Extended by Fiscal Cliff Legislation" below.) We now summarize below some other notable employee benefits and compensation-related provisions contained in the fiscal cliff legislation.

For more information on these provisions, please click here.

Tax-Free Employee Educational Assistance Programs Extended by Fiscal Cliff Legislation

Under the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012—i.e., the fiscal cliff legislation—Congress has extended the ability of employers to pay or reimburse an employee on a tax-free basis for up to $5,250 in educational assistance (which does not have to be job-related) under a written plan of the employer.

For more information on the extension of employee educational assistance, please click here.