Cummings & Lockwood LLC
 Courthouse Columns

Alerts & Updates

Supreme Court Rules that Non-Willful Foreign Bank Account Reporting Penalty Applies on a Per Report Basis

April 17, 2023

The Bank Secrecy Act requires every U.S. person with a financial interest in, or signature or other authority over, a financial account located outside the U.S. to report the account to the U.S. Treasury Department annually, if the total value of the foreign financial accounts exceeds $10,000 at any time during the year.


The IRS Puts its Stake in the Ground with Respect to Step Up in Basis on Grantor Trusts Not Included in Taxable Estate

April 7, 2023

With IRS Revenue Ruling 2023-2, the IRS is attempting to eliminate a position trumpeted by certain estate and gift tax practitioners and commenters since 2002.


Biden Administration's 2024 Fiscal Year Budget Proposals Once Again Threaten Changes to the Estate and Gift Tax System

March 31, 2023

On March 9, 2023, the Treasury Department released its General Explanations of the Administration’s Fiscal Year 2024 Revenue Proposals (known as the Greenbook), to accompany President Biden’s proposed budget for fiscal year 2024.


Corporate Transparency Act

January 25, 2023

In September 2022, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (“FinCEN”) of the Department of the Treasury issued final regulations implementing the beneficial ownership information (“BOI”) reporting requirements of the Corporate Transparency Act of 2020 (the “CTA”). 


2022 Cummings & Lockwood Firmwide Annual Update

January 4, 2023

To Our Clients and Friends:

The end of the year is a good time for reflection about our values and accomplishments and our goals for the coming year.  A letter from our new Chairman and Managing Director, Laura Weintraub Beck.


Tax Update: What the SECURE 2.0 Act of 2022 Means for 529 Accounts

January 3, 2023

Included in Congress’ recently passed SECURE 2.0 Act of 2022 (SECURE 2.0) is a noteworthy planning opportunity for those with 529 Accounts. In the past, withdrawals from tax-advantaged 529 Accounts could only be used for qualified education expenses without incurring federal income tax and penalties. While accounts could be rolled over for certain relatives, the options were undesirable for most.


Massachusetts Millionaire’s Tax Passed

November 11, 2022

The Massachusetts constitution requires that the income tax must be a flat tax.  On November 8, 2022, voters in Massachusetts approved a constitutional amendment for the first time in 22 years which imposes a 4% surtax on top of the state’s 5% flat tax for the portion of the annual household income exceeding $1,000,000.  The $1,000,000 threshold will be adjusted annually to reflect cost-of-living increases. 


Inflation Causes Significant Increases to Federal Estate and Gift Tax Exemptions

October 18, 2022

On October 18, 2022, the IRS officially announced the inflation adjustments for 2023 for the gift and estate tax exemptions.


2022 Private Clients Group Annual Update Letter

October 2022

This annual update summarizes the current status of the estate and gift tax rates and exemptions at the federal and state levels (Connecticut, New York and Florida) and highlights key provisions of these important state law developments.


IRS Issues Proposed Regulations Clarifying Anti-Clawback Rules for Retained Interest Gifts

April 29, 2022

In November of 2019, the IRS issued final regulations referred to as the “Anti-Clawback” regulations that made it clear that a taxpayer who took advantage of the higher gift tax exemptions (currently, $12,060,000) available under the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act would not owe additional estate tax upon death if the exemption is lower at the time of death.  The regulation was needed since the estate tax calculation includes lifetime taxable gifts.  Otherwise, a taxpayer who made a large gift now may not pay gift tax but the estate would pay estate tax upon the taxpayer’s death if the exemption was lower at that time.


The Biden Administration's Revenue Proposals Again Include Changes to the Estate and Gift Tax System

March 30, 2022

On March 28, 2022, the Biden Administration released its “General Explanation of the Administration’s Fiscal Year 2023 Revenue Proposals.”  The document again supports several drastic changes to the estate and gift tax system in addition to changes to the income tax system.


Status of Remote Notarizations in New York and Connecticut

February 24, 2022

On December 22, 2021, New York joined 39 other states (including Florida) to make remote notarizations permanently legal.