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Facebook and Google Face Billions in New Taxes, Maybe

Benjamin Franklin said death and taxes are certain, but he was an American.

Americans shouldn't have to worry about foreign taxes, right? According to reports, however, foreign countries are trying to tax internet giants like Facebook and Google.

They can't collect income taxes from the U.S.-based companies, so they want "digital taxes" for services in their countries. Benjamin Franklin might be rolling over in his grave except for one thing: he was quite the foreign diplomat.

MetLife Faces Class Action for Delayed Retirement Payouts

When MetLife admitted last year that it failed to pay pensions to deserving people, the company said it owed beneficiaries an average of $150 a month.

But according to a new lawsuit, MetLife owes more like $500 million. What's more, the attorneys say, the payments are long overdue.

In Roycroft v. MetLife, Inc., the complaint alleges the company has delayed paying some beneficiaries for up to 25 years. By the time it gets sorted out, many of them could be dead.

Insights on Motivating Tax Compliance Behavior

Some behaviors are instinctual, like a predator's instinct to hunt or the prey's instinct to run.

Paying taxes is not instinctual, but you knew that. What you may not know, however, is people pay taxes primarily because of an "internalized motivation."

That means, according to one psychology study, they have a strong moral norm to comply and a sense that the fiscal system is fair. That's something your corporate clients may need to know.

Although many people were slow to give in to the temptation and convenience that is online shopping when it first debuted, the reluctance often disappeared when a person realized they could avoid paying sales tax by buying from an out of state retailer.

However, the honeymoon of tax free online shopping soon came to an end, and sites like Amazon now charge sales tax on the items they sell. One little, multi-million dollar hiccup, however, involves Amazon's seller marketplace, which allows independent merchants to sell online.

Can the Boss Pay for Personal Expenses With Company Money?

It's rarely a headline when a company president pays for some personal expenses with business money -- unless that happens to be Donald Trump, President of the United States.

Before he was elected, Trump raised $339 million in campaign money with about $66 million coming from his own resources. Since then, he reportedly has spent campaign and RNC funds on legal bills in the probe of alleged Russian interference in the election.

But is it news or politics at work? And when it comes to companies, what's wrong with paying for executives' personal business as usual?

Corporate Succession Plan Starts at the Top

Like finding an incomplete will, it's really too late for succession planning if you've waited until the company president dies.

Before the funeral is over, people are vying for control. Some distant relation will suddenly appear with a forgotten claim. And who invited the taxman?

Dying is hard enough, but you can make it a little easier by planning ahead for succession in your company. It starts at the top.

How Businesses Are Adapting to Overtime Rule Uncertainty

Sometimes you just have to laugh about life's twists and turns. Especially since Donald Trump became president and started rolling back Barack Obama's initiatives, like the proposed rule on overtime wages.

The proposed overtime increases are long overdue and now appear to be overdone. That's because the changes were to take effect in December 2016, but a judge granted a preliminary injunction to stop them in November, and then Trump put a freeze on the regulations in January.

Nearly four months after the judge ruled, there is no appealing the injunction and the reality is setting in: overtime increases are not coming anytime soon.

Proposed IRS Regulations Go After the Family Limited Partnership

If your client operates a business through a Family Limited Partnership, professional responsibility requires that you apprise them of possible changes on the horizon that could substantially affect these entities' tax exposure.

This is big news for high net-worth families who have successfully utilized the Minority Interest Discount to reduce estate taxes for the next generation. But how do you break the news to your rich clients?

In early April, the Treasury Department and IRS released new proposed regulations under Section 385 of the Internal Revenue Code. They have been called “sweeping” and “dramatic” by tax experts and partners at major firms across the board — terms not usually associated with IRS regs. And they come as a bit of a surprise, having only been hinted to in earlier Treasury rule-making notices.

The new Section 385 regulations are so broad that they “fundamentally redefine the extent to which an intercompany instrument will constitute debt, irrespective of whether that group is inverted and who in the group issues it,” as Kevin M. Cunningham, managing director of KMPG in the International group, explains in a new Special Report for Thomson Reuters Checkpoint. (Disclosure: Thomson Reuters is FindLaw’s parent company.) Here’s what in-house counsel need to know.

More Whistleblower Profits: SEC Gives Second Biggest Award

On June 9th, the SEC announced its second largest award given under the 2010 Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Program: $17,000,000. The money will be paid to the anonymous individual that supplied the agency with information that eventually led to the successful investigation of fraudulent practices in securities. This monumental sum, however, pales in comparison to the $30M award paid in September of 2014.