State and Local Tax
WeiserMazars State and Local Tax (SALT) Practice professionals provide a wide variety of services including:
- Based the complexities of today’s tax laws, are you certain of which states your company is required to file tax returns in and/or remit tax to?
- If you are conducting multi-state activities, do you evaluate nexus issues on an annual basis?
WeiserMazars SALT specialists perform a comprehensive analysis of your company’s SALT filing posture that will indicate whether exposure or refund opportunities exist. In the event of an error or omission, we can correspond with the state and local taxing authorities to reduce the number of tax years for which an assessment is made (the “look back period”), abate the potential penalties, and/or obtain a refund of tax erroneously paid. WeiserMazars can also identify those activities that typically create sufficient nexus for future filings and develop strategies to reduce tax by eliminating or, in some instances, creating nexus in various states and localities.
Tax Controversies (Audits and Appeals)
- Who is going to assist you when your tax position is questioned?
WeiserMazars can assist in all phases of the audit process, including meeting with agents, drafting responses and protests, representing clients in hearings, and submitting administrative appeals. Our SALT professionals have a proven track record in successfully resolving SALT audits by reducing assessments and abating penalties.
- Who has the experience to guide you through voluntary disclosure while keeping you anonymous?
If your organization has failed to file the appropriate tax returns for several years and, consequently, has significant exposure, you will often question the appropriate resolution. In this situation, we recommend voluntary disclosure.
WeiserMazars will act as representatives in anonymous negotiations with the taxing authority. Due to our extensive contacts with the state revenue departments, we have found this method of resolution often results in the settlement of reduced liabilities for a limited “look back period”, with an abatement of penalties.
Tax Rulings and Advice Letters
- Are you involved in a complex transaction or looking to pursue an aggressive tax return position?
Both tax rulings and advice letters enable you to make an informed decision and to act with an elevated level of confidence. A tax ruling is an advisory statement written by a state or local taxing authority. Similarly, an advice letter is a predictive memoranda drafted after considering the specific facts at issue and the current state of the law.
Often you may desire a “seal of approval” or documentation when planning a complex transaction or looking to pursue an aggressive tax return position. WeiserMazars can assist you by bringing certainty or documentation of the tax treatment and ramifications through the use of tax rulings and/or advice letters.
Individual Residency Audits
- Are you confident that your New York non-resident claim will hold up?
New York State and City continue their aggressive audit campaign that has targeted New York non-residents with high income. Personal residency audits have occurred with greater frequency, particularly with high-income individuals such as CEOs and CFOs. WeiserMazars has a proven track record of successfully reducing the audit burden and any resulting liability. Our personnel will help defend your position during the audit process, including correspondence with the state officials, negotiations regarding the reallocation of income, the number of years under review, the reduction of penalties, and the submission of appeals.
Reverse Sales and Use Tax Audits
- Is your company properly paying vendors or accruing sales and use tax?
- Do you have the research you need on your state’s or municipality’s sales and use tax exemptions for the use of equipment utilized in manufacturing, pollution control, and research and development?
- Are other sales and use tax exemptions available?
WeiserMazars professionals perform diagnostic reviews of the sales and use tax function including interviews with the employees involved in the process to help you answer these questions and more. If the diagnostic review identifies real and/or potential overpayments or underpayments, a comprehensive reverse audit would follow in order to qualify and quantify refunds or exposure. We also assist in obtaining refunds and resolving exposure.
Income/Franchise Tax Reduction Studies
- As a result of the complexity and diversity of state income and franchise tax rules, groups of companies often find that they are paying tax on more than 100% of their income. How do you protect your company?
Through the proactive use of filing options, apportionment, and allocation methodologies, special purpose subsidiaries, reorganizations, and adjustments to the tax base, state and local income and franchise taxes may be reduced. WeiserMazars SALT specialists perform diagnostic reviews of our client’s operations and tax returns to identify potential savings opportunities.
Due Diligence Reviews
- Are you comfortable with your level of tax law compliance?
WeiserMazars can examine your company’s history of SALT filings in order to ascertain the level of compliance with SALT rules. As a result, we can identify, evaluate, and quantify potential exposure or refund opportunities.
Contract Tax Services
- Are you implementing cost-saving methods?
- Have you considered outsourcing?
Every organization is challenged to reduce costs and to operate more productively with improved quality and effectiveness. One cost saving method is to outsource the tax function, which often leads to increased efficiency and substantial cost reduction. Weiser would prepare the necessary state and local income, property and/or sales, and use tax returns, while saving you time and money.
Merger and Acquisition Transaction Planning
- When structuring mergers, do you find that the focus is on reporting federal tax issues, while SALT issues are ignored?
In many merger transactions, state and local taxes are critical. As a result of the complexity and diversity of SALT rules pertaining to the sale of an entire business or a portion thereof, organizations need assistance with structuring these transactions. WeiserMazars can help analyze transaction costs and recommend alternative transaction strategies. WeiserMazars tax professionals will ensure that all state and local tax filing and notification requirements are met, advise clients of applicable transfer taxes, and suggest alternative strategies to minimize the immediate, as well as future, costs associated with the transaction.
Site/Location Selection Studies
- Are you looking to expand and move your operation to a new location?
- What are the tax implications of such a transaction?
WeiserMazars professionals can assess and compare the SALT effect of proposed sites based on the specific issues in your new state or locality.
Nonresident Withholding Studies
- Are you withholding taxes properly for your employees that work out of many states?
In today’s mobile workplace, you are faced with diverse and complicated state and local tax withholding requirements. Often a company will fail to adequately withhold when it sends employees to states in which it does not have formal operations. WeiserMazars SALT specialists can quantify your potential exposure, recommend practices to track your employee’s withholding requirements, and utilize voluntary disclosure and programs.
Strategic State and Local Tax Consulting
- Is your tax department all it could be?
Every financial and tax executive is challenged to reduce costs and to operate more productively with improved quality and effectiveness. In order to achieve these objectives, you need to share information with your tax advisors. WeiserMazars can assist you in gaining greater knowledge and vision about the direction of your tax department through benchmarking and best practices studies. Results can be achieved through redesigning, re-engineering, and outsourcing your tax practice.
Amended State and Local Tax Returns to Report Federal RAR Results
- Who will assist you with state and local returns if you have to file an amended federal return?
If a federal audit results in an amended return, most states require that corresponding state return changes be filed within 60 - 90 days. You may not have the time or the resources to comply with this requirement. WeiserMazars tax professionals can relieve you of this burden by preparing the various state tax returns affected by the federal audit in time to meet your deadlines.
Tax Returns Reviews
- Are your tax returns accurate?
In addition to checking the returns for calculation errors, WeiserMazars reviews filing options (i.e., consolidated, combined, and separate returns), filing status (i.e., regular and financial corporations), apportionment and allocation factors, computation of state alternative minimum taxes, and proper usage of credits. Independent reviews by our SALT professionals can lead to greater compliance with the tax law and, consequently, fewer instances of audit.
Unclaimed Property Services
- Do you have unclaimed property issues?
Some examples of unclaimed property include uncashed payroll and accounts payable checks, customer overpayments, gift certificates, merchandise credits, and accounts receivable balances.
Generally, all businesses are required to report and remit unclaimed property, also known as abandoned property, unclaimed funds, or escheat. After a certain time period, a state may acquire such property that is abandoned or remains unclaimed or uncollected by its rightful owner. The rules in this area vary by state. Weiser can review your company’s unclaimed property posture to identify and quantify exposure. As necessary, we can then assist you in complying with such requirements.
State Tax Credit and Incentive Studies
- Is there a tax credit or incentive to retain and encourage business expansion that you are missing in your jurisdiction?
The most widely sought after tax credits and incentives include research and development credits, investment tax credits, jobs credits, and facility expansion credits, yet may not be claimed by taxpayers.
WeiserMazars identifies existing credit opportunities, gathers the requested information, prepares refund claims, and develops procedures for future periods, which is especially helpful since states and localities have different qualifications and filing requirements to secure these benefits.