Other 2010 Opportunities
S Corporation Built-In Gains Tax : An S corporation generally is not subject to tax; instead, it passes through its income or loss items to its shareholders, who are taxed on their pro-rata shares of the S corporation's income. However, if a business that was formed as a C corporation elects to become an S corporation, the S corporation is taxed at the highest corporate rate on all gains that were built in at the time of the election if the gains are recognized during a special holding period. For tax years beginning in 2009 and 2010, the special holding period is shortened to seven years. (As discussed below, it is shortened even more for tax years beginning in 2011.)
100% Exclusion of Gain Attributable to Certain Small Business Stock : The incentive for individuals to acquire qualified small business stock is higher between now and December 31, 2010. An individual ordinarily may exclude 50% of the gain from qualified small business stock that is held for at least five years (subject to a cap). "Qualified small business stock" is stock of a corporation the assets of which do not exceed $50 million when the stock is issued. The 50% exclusion of gain is increased to 75% for qualified small business stock acquired after February 17, 2009, and before September 28, 2010. The Small Business Jobs Act excludes 100% of the gain for qualified small business stock acquired or issued after September 27, 2010, and before January 1, 2011.
Qualifying Dividends : Qualifying dividends received in 2010 are subject to rates similar to the capital gains rates. Therefore, qualifying dividends are taxed at a maximum rate of 15%. Qualifying dividends include dividends that domestic and certain foreign corporations pay to their shareholders. Note that if Congress does not act to extend the reduced dividend rates, beginning in 2011 the rates will revert back to pre-2001 levels (i.e., will be taxed at the taxpayer's ordinary income rate, up to a maximum of 39.6%). The President has proposed to keep qualifying dividend income taxed at the same rate as capital gains, which could increase to 20% in 2011.
Attribute-Carryover-Limitation Relief : Section 382(n) provides that the §382 limitation does not apply to certain ownership changes occurring after February 17, 2009, as part of taxpayers' restructuring plans that are required under loan agreements or commitments for lines of credit entered into with Treasury under TARP. Reporting
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