News & Tech Tips

New Evidence Permissible in Ohio Municipal Tax Appeals

Last week the Ohio Supreme Court concluded that it is permissible for Ohio taxpayers to present new evidence during Ohio Board of Tax Appeals hearings in the court’s ruling in the case of MacDonald v. Shaker Heights Board of Income Tax Review (Slip Opinion No. 2015-Ohio-3290).

What This Ruling Means for Taxpayers:

  • Both individuals and businesses may present new evidence when appealing municipal income tax decisions to the Ohio Board of Tax Appeals (OBTA).
    • Previously, facts considered in OBTA appeals were typically limited to the findings presented by the Municipal Board of Appeal (MBOA).
  • The ruling in MacDonald v. Shaker Heights BITR also upheld the determination that taxpayers can choose a non-lawyer representative in MBOA cases, including a Certified Public Accountant (CPA).

We hope this information has been helpful to you.  If you have questions about MacDonald v. Shaker Heights BITRplease contact your Whalen & Company representative.

More Information:

Highway Bill Includes Provisions for Individual and Business Taxes

On July 31, 2015 President Barack Obama signed into law a bill for highway funding and veterans affairs that includes important tax provisions for individuals and businesses.

Some of the notable tax-related changes put into action by H.R. 3236, the “Surface Transportation and Veterans Health Care Choice Improvement Act of 2015,” are as follows…

FASB Proposes Not-for-Profit Accounting Standards Update

The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) recently proposed an accounting standards update (ASU) for not-for-profit entities.  The proposed update will affect not-for-profit organizations (topic 958) and health care entities (topic 954), and is designed to make financial statements more useful.

FASB shared this statement in a press release on the topic:

  • “The proposed ASU contains recommended enhancements to the fundamental reporting model for not-for-profit organizations-a model that has existed for more than 20 years,” stated FASB member Lawrence W. Smith. “We believe that these changes will refresh the model in ways that will make not-for-profit financial statements even more useful to donors, lenders, and other users.” 

The proposal, Project: 2015-230 Presentation of Financial Statements of Not-for-Profit Entities, includes major changes to the following reporting areas:

  • Net asset classification
  • Liquidity
  • Statement of activities
  • Cash flows

FASB Nonprofit reporting update

FASB is accepting public comments on the proposal through Aug. 20, 2015, which can be submitted here.

The standards board recently held an educational webcast outlining the objectives of the proposal, key improvements that will take place if adopted and rationale behind the updates. The webcast is available for viewing here (you must register to access the archived event).

Whalen & Company will stay on top of the progress of this exposure draft proposal and we will keep our not-for-profit clients apprised of changes to reporting standards. An effective date will be determined by the FASB once they have considered all comments and feedback received from third parties. It is expected, however, that all amendments proposed in the ASU would be applied on a retrospective basis. In the first year of application, a not-for-profit entity would be required to disclose the nature of any re-classifications or restatements and their effects, if any, on changes in the net asset classes for each year presented.

Links to Key Resources for FASB’s Proposed Accounting Standards Update:

If you have questions about FASB’s proposed updates to not-for-profit financial statement reporting, please contact your Whalen representative

Ohio BWC Prospective Billing Switch Begins July 1

July 1, 2015 marks the beginning of the new policy year for the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) prospective billing schedule for private employer premiums. Employers should receive letters over the next few weeks outlining their estimated premium installment schedules for the first policy year from July 1, 2015 to June 30, 2016. 

Ohio BWC made this change from retrospective to prospective billing to align the agency with industry standards, and anticipates program benefits will include more flexible payment options and better budget anticipation for employers.

Important Dates for Ohio BWC Prospective Billing:

  • July 1, 2015: Policy Period and Prospective Billing Begins
    • Ohio BWC is paying first installment as a continuation of the transition credit employers received for the first half of the year
  • Aug. 31, 2015: First payment due from Ohio employers
  • Nov. 2, 2015: Payment due from Ohio employers
  • Dec. 31, 2015: Payment due from Ohio employers
  • Mar. 2, 2016: Payment due from Ohio employers
  • May 2, 2016: Payment Due from Ohio employers
  • Aug. 15, 2016: Employers must file a report to reconcile payroll estimates previously paid vs. actual payroll amount for previous policy year (AKA “Payroll True-Up”)
    • If “True-Up” is not reported on time, the employer could lose coverage immediately and may be subject to other penalties/fines

(The switch will take effect on Jan. 1, 2016 for public employer taxing districts.)

Free seminars and webinars from Ohio BWC are available for employers to learn more about how prospective billing will impact your business.  Click here to see scheduled webinars.

Ohio BWC also launched the “Destination: Excellence” risk-management program, that features incentives and savings programs, to coincide with the switch to prospective billing. To learn more about the programs available and understand the benefits of the program, check out this Ohio BWC brochure.

If you have questions about Ohio BWC’s switch to prospective billing, please contact your Whalen representative.

More informationOhio BWC Prospective Billing Resources and FAQs