The IRS is suing Facebook for US$9 billion, saying the company kept profits in subsidiaries based in Ireland.
The IRS argues that Facebook understated the value of the intellectual property it sold to an Irish subsidiary in 2010 while building out global operations, a move common among U.S. multinationals…Under the arrangement, Facebook’s subsidiaries pay royalties to the U.S.-based parent for access to its trademark, users and platform technologies. From 2010 to 2016, Facebook Ireland paid Facebook U.S. more than $14 billion in royalties and cost-sharing payments, according to the court filing.
If the IRS succeeds this would be one of Facebook’s biggest fines.
On Monday the IRS announced changes to its deal with the tax filing industry. For years the agency was prohibited from creating its own free tax filing system, like other countries do. In exchange for not competing, the tax industry promised to make free versions of its software if you make below a certain amount of income. But companies like Intuit and H&R Block added code to their web pages to make it harder for their free products to appear on Google. But now it all changes.
“The improved process will make Free File stronger and give taxpayers another reason to consider this valuable software option,” IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig said in a statement. The agency hopes the changes will make the free option more accessible for taxpayers in the 2020 filing season, he said.
Private tax companies don’t want you to know this, but if your income is below US$66,000 the IRS offers free tax filing software. If your income is above US$66,000 you can still file for free, but you’ll have to do it manually with fillable forms. However, thanks to the long government shutdown this year, tax returns will end up being late.