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In the News: August 21, 2023

The Woodard Report Team
Posted by The Woodard Report Team on Aug 22, 2023 9:58:41 AM

This week's In the News covers key developments relevant to accounting professionals across artificial intelligence, tax relief, financial crimes, and software updates. Intuit plans to showcase new AI capabilities that will transform financial experiences at its upcoming virtual Innovation Day. The IRS has provided extensive filing relief for Hawaii wildfire victims. The owners of a mental health services company pleaded guilty to employment tax crimes. Finally, QuickBooks Online released several new features and improvements in areas like payroll, payments, tax, time tracking, industry-specific tools, and fixed asset accounting. Read on to get the details!

Intuit Announces Virtual Innovation Day Event

Financial technology company Intuit announced it will host a special virtual Intuit Innovation Day event on September 6 to unveil new generative AI capabilities across its platform and products.

The event will be headlined by Intuit CEO Sasan Goodarzi and executives from the company's major product divisions. They plan to showcase Intuit's new proprietary generative AI operating system, GenOS, which will power next-generation features driven by AI.

Intuit states it is uniquely positioned to lead innovation in this space due to its established AI foundations and commitment to responsible data stewardship. The company aims to create breakthrough financial experiences to help consumers and small businesses improve their financial success.

The virtual event starts at 9:30 AM PT on September 6 and will be live-streamed at

New Features Released in QuickBooks Online

This month QuickBooks Online released several updates to improve user experience and workflow efficiency. These changes provide more flexibility, automation, and insights across payroll, payments, tax, time tracking, industry-specific features, and fixed asset accounting. Specifically, the major updates include more account mapping options in payroll, automated credit card migration from Desktop, direct IRS transcript access in ProConnect Tax, more QuickBooks Time integration, agriculture-focused tools through Figured integration, and fixed asset management in QuickBooks Online Advanced.

  • More account mapping flexibility in QuickBooks Online Payroll
  • Automatic credit card data migration from QuickBooks Desktop Payments
  • IRS transcript direct access within Intuit ProConnect Tax
  • More QuickBooks Time tasks integrated into QuickBooks Online
  • Connection to Figured + platform for farm financial management
  • Fixed asset accounting capabilities in QuickBooks Online Advanced

Read about these new features and updates and sign up for the monthly In the Know webinar.

Tax Relief Provided for Hawaii Wildfire Victims

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has announced extensive tax filing relief for victims of the ongoing wildfires in Hawaii. The relief applies to impacted taxpayers in Maui and Hawaii counties, which have been designated by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) as eligible for assistance.

Under the relief measures, affected individuals and businesses will have until February 15, 2024 to file various tax returns and payments that were originally due between August 8, 2023 and February 15, 2024. This includes individual income, corporate income, payroll, and excise tax filings and payments.

The IRS is automatically granting the relief for taxpayers with addresses of record in the disaster area. Those who lived outside the region but had tax records affected can contact the IRS for assistance.

In addition to filing extensions, the tax relief postpones timeframes for actions like making IRA withdrawals and claiming casualty losses. It also excludes disaster relief aid from taxable income.

According to the IRS, this coordinated tax relief effort aims to alleviate financial stress for Hawaii residents rebuilding their lives and businesses in the aftermath of the destructive wildfires. The measures are based on local damage assessments by FEMA. Further assistance may be provided moving forward. 

Owners of Mental Health Counseling Services Company Plead Guilty to Employment Tax Crime

The owners of a mental health counseling services company called Family Youth Intervention Services Inc. located in Tulsa, Oklahoma have pleaded guilty to employment tax crimes.

The co-owners, Stephen Christopher Parker of Oklahoma and Michael Baines of Virginia, failed to pay over $1.26 million in income and Medicare/Social Security taxes that were withheld from employee wages from 2014 to 2017.

For the second quarter of 2016, they also did not file the required quarterly payroll tax return.

Parker and Baines were responsible for withholding, accounting for, and paying these employment taxes but willfully failed to do so.

They each face up to 5 years in prison, supervised release, restitution, and monetary penalties. The exact sentences will be determined based on sentencing guidelines and other factors.

The guilty pleas were announced by the Justice Department's Tax Division and the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Northern District of Oklahoma. The cases were investigated by IRS-Criminal Investigation.

Topics: Finger on the Pulse


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