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July 2014 Edition of Indian Tribal Governments News

ITG News Home page

Print Version

  • Director’s message
  • Tribes: have you filed your Form 11-C?
  • How to avoid an “averaged” failure-to-deposit penalty
  • Changes coming to Social Security
  • Outreach update
  • Arizona training opportunities
  • Pacific Northwest training opportunities

 

Director’s message

I am excited to draw your attention to the recently released General Welfare guidance. You may have received an e-mail from Treasury about it, but we have also posted a web article for your review. Please be sure to check it out.

We’d like to thank the volunteers who have participated in the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program. You provide a tremendous service to tribal members, offering your help at no charge to those who are in need.

Finally, we are working on hosting two virtual events. Once we have confirmed the dates and times, we will share that information with you. The topics will be Year End Reconciliation and General Welfare.

As always, if you have questions, comments or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact your ITG Specialist or send us an e-mail.

Sincerely,

Christie Jacobs
Indian Tribal Governments Director

 

Tribes: have you filed your Form 11-C?

Tribes selling pull-tabs were required to file Form 11-C by July 1 for the period July 1, 2014 through June 30, 2015. Tribal governments and agents (persons who accept taxable wagers on behalf of the tribe) should complete this form as soon as possible. Read the April 2014 edition of the ITG News for more information.

 

How to avoid an “averaged” failure-to-deposit penalty

When preparing Form 941, make sure you correctly complete page two, Part 2, line 14 by declaring your deposit schedule and reporting your tax liability.

The IRS may assess an “averaged” failure-to-deposit (FTD) penalty of 2% to 10% if you omit or do not properly complete this liability section of Form 941.

Download ITG’s Helpful Hints to Avoid Penalties guide and read page nine.

 

Changes coming to Social Security

To protect the integrity of the Social Security number and prevent fraud, the Social Security Administration (SSA) will discontinue providing Social Security number printouts effective August 1, 2014. If you need proof of your Social Security number and you do not have your Social Security card, you will need to request a replacement Social Security card by completing the Application for a Social Security Card (Form SS-5) and providing the required documentation.

Also, effective October 1, 2014, Social Security will stop providing benefit verification letters in their offices. You will still be able to get an instant letter online with a personal my Social Security account or you may call 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778) to request a letter by mail.

How to get replacement Social Security cards

Your Social Security card is your legal proof of your Social Security number. If you need proof of your number, and you cannot find your card, you will need a replacement card. To get a replacement card, you must complete an Application for a Social Security Card (Form SS-5). Use this link and type “Form SS-5” in the search bar to find the form. You also will need documents proving your identity, age and citizenship or lawful immigration status.

In most cases, you can take, or mail, your completed application and original documents to any Social Security office. Use the Social Security locator to find the Social Security office or Social Security Card Center that serves your area. After processing, SSA will return your documents to you.

How to get benefit verification letters

If you need proof of your Social Security or Supplemental Security Income benefits, you can get a benefit verification letter online instantly through a my Social Security account. To create an account, click here. With my Social Security, you can easily view, print or save an official letter that includes proof of your:

  • Benefit amount and type; and
  • Medicare start date and withholding amount (if applicable); and Age.

If you are unable to go online, you can call the toll-free number at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778) to request having your letter mailed to you. You can also use your annual cost-of-living adjustment notice or SSA Form 1099 as proof of income from Social Security.

For more information, visit the Social Security website or call 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778), and ask for helpful publications, such as:

 

Tribal successes with the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program

The IRS office of Indian Tribal Governments (ITG) and the office of Stakeholder Partnerships, Education and Communication (SPEC) would like to thank all of our partners who provided tax assistance.  

Despite a delayed start for filing returns during the 2013 season, tribal VITA sites prepared more returns than last year; whereas non-tribal VITA sites prepared fewer returns. SPEC and ITG appreciate the valuable free service VITA volunteers provide to tribal customers.

Listed below are the areas in Indian Country who have volunteered in the VITA program.

Alaska

  • Kenaitze Indian Tribe
  • Tlingit Haida Regional Housing Authority
  • Tongass Federal Credit Union in Metlakatla

Arizona

  • Colorado River Indian Tribes (CRIT)
  • Cornfields Chapter of the Navajo Nation and its satellite offices in Chinle and Pinon
  • DNA OFFICES Chinle Chapter Compound
  • DNA OFFICES Window Rock   Gallup Catholic Charities
  • Gila River Indian Community (GRIC)
  • Inter-Tribal Governments
  • Native American Connections
  • Pascua Yaqui Tribe
  • Paiute Neighborhood Center supported by AARP
  • San Carlos Housing Authority
  • San Lucy District of the Tohono O’odham Nation
  • Show Low Pioneer College supported by United Way of Northern Arizona
  • Tohono O’odham Nation
  • Tuba City Bik’eh Hozho supported by United Way of Northern Arizona
  • White Mountain Apache Housing Authority supported by United Way of Northern Arizona
  • White River Masonic Lodge 62 supported by AARP

New Mexico

  • Jade Tax Aide supported by AARP
  • New Mexico Legal Aid
  • Catholic Charities
  • Native (Navajo) Community Finance
  • Northern Pueblos Housing
  • Ramah
  • Zuni Housing Authority

North Carolina

  • Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians of North Carolina - Qualla Financial Freedom

Oklahoma

  • Absentee Shawnee Tribe
  • Big Five Choctaw Community Action Agency
  • Citizens of Potawatomi FSA Stand Alone
  • Cherokee Nation – 9 VITA sites
  • Cherokee Nation FSA My Free Taxes
  • Chickasaw Nation
  • NEOCAA Seneca Cayuga – Virtual Drop Off site               
  • Oklahoma Indian Legal Services                                      

Utah

  • Blanding VITA Site
  • Mexican Water Chapter

Washington

  • Chehalis Tribal Loan Fund
  • Colville Tribal VITA at Nespelem
  • Port Gamble S’Kallam Tribe
  • Squaxin Island Tribal VITA

Find out how to become a VITA volunteer.

To set up your own VITA site, obtain guidance and other information, please consult your local IRS-SPEC tax consultants.

 

Outreach update

Pacific Northwest (Alaska)

The ITG office in Anchorage held a phone forum on tax reporting responsibilities for tribes involved in the sale of pull tabs and raffle tickets. Eight individuals participated in this session on June 19. Topics included wagering games (pull tabs and raffles), and how to complete Forms 11-C and SS-4.

Western

National Indian Gaming Commission held a three day training opportunity March 11-13, 2014 for the gaming tribes of California, Nevada and surrounding regions, hosted by Morongo Casino Resort & Spa. The ITG National Program Manager, an ITG Specialist and a BSA Internal Revenue Agent presented two training sessions on Tip Compliance, Form 8027 (Employer’s Annual Information Return of Tip Income and Allocated Tips) and Title 31 Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) updates and current BSA issues. Representatives from various tribes and tribal entities attended the workshop.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS.org) hosted a two-day conference in Sacramento, CA that began June 3. A Northern California ITG Specialist presented on the Tax Impacts of Health Insurance Coverage for 2014. Topics included the Health Insurance Marketplace, the Premium Tax Credit and the Individual Shared Responsibility Provision. Representatives of tribes and health agencies attended. Participating agencies included CMS, Social Security Administration, Veterans Affairs, California Rural Indian Health Board, and Legal Services of Northern California, Inc.

Southwestern

ITG specialists from the Tucson office provided the following training sessions:

Basic Employment Tax Training workshop, Chinle Agency Chapters, Flagstaff, Arizona; and Village of Kykotsmovi Community Center, Second Mesa, Arizona.  ITG presented these training sessions on December 5 and 6, 2013 to individuals representing chapters of the Navajo Nation for the Chinle Agency.

They also offered the same training on December 12, 2013 to individuals who represented Hopi Tribe Village Governments.

Topics included defining employees vs. independent contractors, computing payroll taxes, federal tax deposits, tax return due dates, avoiding penalties and completing various forms. During the workshop, ITG specialists offered participants compliance reviews as well as assistance with different issues.

Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) training sessions. An ITG specialist assigned to the Tucson office offered VITA training sessions throughout the state of Arizona. ITG trained and certified 34 individuals as VITA volunteers.
 
Elected Officials workshop, Village of Kykotsmovi Elder/Youth Center, Kykotsmovi, Arizona. ITG presented this training session on March 20, 2014 to individuals who represented Hopi Tribe Village Governments and Hopi Tribal Entities. Topics included defining employees vs. independent contractors, computing payroll taxes, federal tax deposits, tax return due dates, avoiding penalties and completing various forms. During the workshop, the ITG specialist offered participants compliance reviews as well as assistance with different issues.

Gaming Issues and Reporting Workshop in Tucson, Arizona. Seventeen representatives from various tribes and tribal entities attended the workshop held on April 24, 2014. Topics included required tax reporting for gaming-related payments/activities, completing various IRS forms, tax deposit schedules and avoiding penalties and interest.

Title 31 Workshop in Tucson, Arizona. Sixteen representatives from various tribal entities attended the workshop held on April 24, 2014. Topics included historical background, suspicious activities and money laundering and recordkeeping requirements.

Mini-Advanced Employment Tax Workshop in Tucson, Arizona. ITG held the three-day workshop in May at the Federal Building. Representatives from various tribes and tribal entities attended. Topics included defining employees vs. independent contractors, payroll taxes, making federal tax deposits, due dates and avoiding penalties.

If you would like ITG to provide training in your area of the country, please contact your ITG specialist.

 

Arizona training opportunities

ITG will be offering the following workshop at the IRS office located at 300 West Congress Street, Conference Room B, Tucson, Arizona 85701. Please contact Tricia Miller or Michelle Risk for additional information or to register.

Gaming Issues and Reporting Workshop
September 25, 2014; 9 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Topics

  • Required tax reporting for gaming-related payments/activities
  • U.S. residents – W-2Gs, Forms 1099-MISC, 1096, and 5754
  • Foreign persons – Forms 1042, 1042-S, 1042-T, W-7, W-8BEN, and Pub 515
  • Tax deposit schedules
  • Avoiding penalties and interest
  • End of year reconciliation of Forms 945 to W-2G and 1099-MISC and the various 1042 Forms
  • TIP compliance – Form 8027, TRDA and GITCA Tip Agreements
  • Title 31

Mini-Advanced Employment Tax Workshop:
November 18, 2014 – November 20, 2014; 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily

Topics

  • Defining employees vs. independent contractors
  • Computing the correct taxes for payroll
  • Completing Form 941, Employer's Quarterly Federal Tax Return
  • Making federal tax deposits
  • Due dates on tax returns
  • Completing Forms W-2/W-3 and 1099/1096
  • Reconciling Forms 941 and W-2 at year end
  • Avoiding penalties
  • Meeting rules for an accountable plan for per diem & travel reimbursements
  • The IRS collection process
  • Fringe benefits & General Welfare payments including job training payments/compensation
  • Loans to Tribal members
  • Loans to employees
  • Election workers
  • Elected officials

 

Pacific Northwest training opportunities

ITG is offering the following workshops at the Northern Quest Casino, 100 N. Hayford Rd, Airway Heights, WA.

For more information or to register, please contact Melodie Gren or call 509-919-8337. Please respond by August 30, 2014.  

Basic Payroll Tax/Information Returns Workshop
September 9, 2014; 9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Topics

  • Employment status (employee or independent contractor)
  • Form W-4 and calculating employment tax liabilities
  • Employee compensation and other employee taxable payments
  • Employment tax deposits
  • Preparation and filing forms 941, 941X and W-2
  • End of year reconciliation of Forms 941 and W-2
  • Social Security: E-verify & how to file W-2s electronically
  • Form W-9
  • Preparation and filing of Forms 945 and 1099 and related tax deposits

Advanced Payroll Tax/Information Returns Workshop
September 10, 2014; 9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Topics

  • Independent contractors versus employees
  • Proper reporting of employee related payments
    • 3rd party sick pay
    • Fringe benefits
    • Expense reimbursement
  • Proper reporting for non-employee payments
    • Work experience/training payments
    • Scholarships
    • Expense reimbursement
    • Foreign workers
  • TIN matching
  • IRS exams and information document requests
  • IRS collections and notice process
  • General Welfare Guidance

Gaming Information Return Workshop
September 11, 2014; 9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Topics

  • Required tax reporting for gaming-related payments/activities
  • U.S. residents – Forms 1099-Misc, 1096, W-9, and 5754
  • Foreign persons – Forms 1042, 1042-S and T, W-7, W-8BEN, and Publication 515
  • Tax deposit schedules
  • How to avoid penalties and interest
  • End of year reconciliation of Forms 945 to W-2G and 1099-Misc and the various 1042 Forms
  • TIP compliance – Form 8027, TRDA and GITCA Tip Agreements

Entity Compliance Checks

We will also be offering the opportunity for the attendees to meet on a confidential basis to discuss their entity’s reporting requirements, tax issues, notices or other tax related matters with an ITG Specialist. Please contact us prior to the training to schedule a time for the meeting.

Page Last Reviewed or Updated: 27-Jun-2014