Brookline, MA (PRWEB) March 05, 2014
For people with equity compensation (and their financial advisors), every tax season raises worries about making errors on tax returns that can lead to overpayment of tax, IRS penalties, or even an IRS audit. This tax-return season has more than the usual potential for confusion, uncertainty, and expensive mistakes. Anyone who received income from equity compensation or sold shares in 2013 must understand the related reporting on IRS tax forms if they are to avoid costly errors on returns.
The clear, concise, and easy-to-read content of http://www.mystockoptions.com can help. The expanded Tax Center at myStockOptions.com provides insights into the prevention of tax-return mistakes, and clearly worded examples show taxpayers and their advisors exactly how to report stock compensation and stock sales on tax returns. The tax content at myStockOptions.com is a respected independent source that they can trust for guidance.
Tax Center: All The Tax-Return Answers
The Tax Center has all the answers on the filing and reporting of tax returns that involve stock options, restricted stock, restricted stock units, performance shares, stock appreciation rights, and employee stock purchase plans. Core articles and FAQs spell out the most common mistakes people make with stock grants on their tax returns. Taxpayers, their financial advisors, and their accountants can quickly run through these to be sure they submit error-free returns. They can make sense of the reporting with annotated how-to diagrams of IRS tax-return forms, along with diagrams of Form W-2, Form 3922 (for employee stock purchase plans), and Form 3921 (for incentive stock options). Fun, engaging podcasts and a video convey tips for tax returns, including errors to avoid.
"The tax reporting for stock compensation is complex," emphasizes Bruce Brumberg, Editor-in-Chief of myStockOptions.com. "Even accountants and tax advisors sometimes make mistakes. Our goal is to help employees and their financial or tax advisors realize the full potential of equity grants by educating them about tax rules and helping them prevent costly errors. The last thing taxpayers want, especially now, is to pay too much tax or incur IRS penalties that take yet more money out of their pockets."
Changes On IRS Form 1099-B
At the start of tax season, brokers send IRS Form 1099-B, or the broker's equivalent statement, to clients who sold shares during the tax year. Also reported to the IRS, the required stock-sale information on Form 1099-B was recently expanded and now includes not only the gross proceeds from stock sales but also their cost basis (sometimes called the tax basis), the date when the shares were acquired, and whether gains or losses were short-term or long-term. While Form 1099-B for the 2013 tax year is similar to the 2012 version, there are some important differences involving the cost basis that taxpayers must be aware of to be sure they avoid mistakes that may lead to overpaying taxes.
In general, cost-basis reporting is now more complex and vulnerable to errors. A diverse set of content at myStockOptions.com explains the background, how to understand Form 1099-B after selling shares from stock compensation or an ESPP, and how to avoid mistakes with the cost basis that can lead to the overpayment of taxes:
1099-B Affects Reporting On IRS Form 8949 & Schedule D
The revised Form 1099-B is essential for completing IRS Form 8949 and Schedule D, which taxpayers who sold shares during the tax year must submit with the Form 1040 tax return. Form 8949, which has also been revised since last year, is where taxpayers list the details of each stock sale, using the information on Form 1099-B. Schedule D has also been revised for this tax season and now allows taxpayers in certain situations to skip the reporting on Form 8949. Otherwise, Schedule D aggregates the column totals from Form 8949 to report total long-term and short-term capital gains and losses. "However," points out Mr. Brumberg, "the cost-basis information in Box 3 of Form 1099-B may be too low, or the box may be blank. This is because the new rules for cost-basis reporting are mandatory only for stock acquired in 2011 and later. Additionally, no basis is reported for restricted stock and RSUs."
Sound confusing? It is. Fortunately, myStockOptions.com is always here to help. In the Tax Center, the special section Reporting Company Stock Sales presents FAQs with annotated diagrams of Form 8949 and Schedule D. Each FAQ explains and illustrates a different reporting situation involving stock options, restricted stock, restricted stock units, performance shares, employee stock purchase plans, or stock appreciation rights. Clear instructions and diagrams show how to complete the forms, whether the cost-basis information in Box 3 of Form 1099-B is accurate, too low, or omitted. Special articles of interest include:
Demystifying IRS Forms 3922 And 3921
Elsewhere on myStockOptions.com, a pair of articles explains IRS Form 3922 for employee stock purchase plans and IRS Form 3921 for incentive stock options. With annotated examples of the forms that translate IRS jargon into understandable language, these articles, along with detailed FAQs (for both ESPPs and ISOs), clarify what taxpayers need to understand about the information provided by the forms, which can help them better understand the complexities of ESPP or ISO taxation. The forms can help with tax-return reporting. They also give the IRS new tools for catching errors on the tax returns of people who sold ESPP or ISO stock.
Pro Membership Gives Advisors A Crucial Edge During Tax Season
myStockOptions.com Pro is a special membership for financial advisors, CPAs, and other professionals who have clients with stock compensation. MSO Pro gives advisors full access to the whole website and special features in the tools, where they can track and model stock grants for up to 25 clients. Access to the vast library of content at myStockOptions.com puts answers to tough client questions right at the fingertips of advisors, who can create PDFs of crucial content with their logo on it for distribution to clients. For more information, visit http://mystockoptions.com or call 617-734-1979.
Corporate Licensing Available
All the content on myStockOptions.com is ideally suited for licensing by companies and stock plan providers for their stock plan participants. A customized version of the website's award-winning content can be seamlessly woven into companies' HR, benefits, and/or compensation portals. Accessible through any internet browser, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, licensed content from myStockOptions.com lets stock plan participants answer their own questions about their stock grants whenever they need to learn more—saving time for the stock plan staff and costs for the company. For more information, visit http://mystockoptions.com or call 617-734-1979.
With exclusive articles, 800+ FAQs, podcasts, the Tax Center, the Learning Center with courses for CE credit, the Global Tax Guide, an extensive glossary, and interactive patented tools, myStockOptions.com is the premier online resource of educational content and tools on stock options, restricted stock, restricted stock units, performance shares, stock appreciation rights, and employee stock purchase plans. myStockOptions.com is written and managed by leading experts in equity compensation, and is produced by a company with a long history of successful publications explaining complex legal and financial subjects in plain English.
The accounting journal CPA Wealth Provider selected myStockOptions.com among companies "that have taken the lead through innovation, efficiency, initiative, or growth in the financial-planning area." The Specialized Information Publishers' Foundation honored MSO Pro with one of its Editorial Excellence Awards in the category of Best Interactive Content among niche publishers. The influential consumer magazine PC World ranks myStockOptions.com among "the most useful sites ever" that "deliver top-notch information, support, and services." myStockOptions.com also has a related site on nonqualified deferred compensation at http://www.myNQDC.com, and the staff created the successful insider trading prevention video series Think Twice, available at http://www.insidertradingvideos.com.
myStockOptions.com has also received extensive favorable coverage in the media, including BusinessWeek, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, and The Boston Globe, and on CNN/fn, National Public Radio, PBS, Money.com, and CBSMarketWatch.com.