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What Did Trump Do To Taxes

Retirement Plans And Hsas

Trump denies NY Times report on income tax filings

Health savings accounts were not affected by the law, and the traditional 401 plan contribution limit in 2019 increased to $19,000 and $25,000 for those aged 50 and older. The law left these limits unchanged but repealed the ability to recharacterize one kind of contribution as the other, that is, to retroactively designate a Roth contribution as a traditional one, or vice-versa. Since the passing of the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act in Dec. 2019, though, people can now contribute to their individual retirement accounts past the age of 70½.

The IRS makes cost-of-living adjustments to contributions for retirement savings accounts every year. For 2022, the annual contribution limit for 401 and other workplace retirement plans is $20,500, up from $19,500 in 2021. Employees over age 50 can contribute an additional $6,000 “catch-up”$26,500 in total.

Changes To The Individual Income Tax

  • Consolidates the current seven tax brackets into three, with rates on ordinary income of 12 percent, 25 percent, and 33 percent .
  • Adapts the current rates for qualified capital gains and dividends to the new brackets.
  • Eliminates the head of household filing status.
Table 1. Individual Income s Under Donald Trumps tax plan

Ordinary Income Rate
$225,000+
  • Eliminates the Net Investment Income Tax.
  • Increases the standard deduction from $6,300 to $15,000 for singles and from $12,600 to $30,000 for married couples filing jointly.
  • Eliminates the personal exemption and introduces other childcare-related tax provisions.
  • Makes childcare costs deductible from adjusted gross income for most Americans , up to the average cost of care in their state. The deduction would be phased out for individuals earning more than $250,000 or couples earning more than $500,000.
  • Offers credits of up to $1,200 a year for childcare expenses to lower-income families, through the earned income tax credit.
  • Creates new saving accounts for care for children or elderly parents, or school tuitions, and offers a 50 percent match of contributions .
  • Caps itemized deductions at $100,000 for single filers and $200,000 for married couples filing jointly.
  • Taxes carried interest as ordinary income.
  • Eliminates the individual alternative minimum tax.

What’s Wrong With The Status Quo

People on both sides of the political spectrum agree that the tax code should be simpler. Since 1986, the last time a major tax overhaul became law, the body of federal tax lawbroadly definedhas swollen from 26,000 to 70,000 pages, according to the House GOP’s 2016 reform proposal. American households and firms spent $409 billion and 8.9 billion hours completing their taxes in 2016, the Tax Foundation estimates. Nearly three-quarters of respondents told Pew four years ago, that they were bothered “some” or “a lot” by the complexity of the tax system.

An even greater proportion was troubled by the feeling that some corporations and some wealthy people pay too little: 82% said so about corporations, while 79% said so about the wealthy. While the new tax law cuts a number of itemized deductions, most of the loopholes and giveaways that were slated for repeal in earlier bills have been retained in some form.

The individual tax rate schedule, which Trump would have cut to three brackets, remains at seven. In other words, this legislation may do relatively little to simplify the tax code. The other issues that the Pew survey indicates that bother people the mosttaxes for wealthy individuals and corporationsare likely to be exacerbated by the law.

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Promise: A Level Playing Field

A businesss tax rate depends on, among other things, its structure.

Most businesses are structured as pass-through or flow-through entities, with the owners facing individual tax rates and no tax on the entities themselves.

On the surface, dropping the corporate tax rate to 21% from 35% while only lowering the top individual rate to 37% from 39.6% might seem unfair. So the law includes a special deduction for pass-through owners, allowing them to shield up to 20% of their income from those businesses from individual taxes.

But it isnt as simple as comparing the corporate and individual tax rates.

After a C corporations profits are taxed at the corporate rate, the remaining profits that go to shareholders get taxed at the capital gains rate, too. Depending on how much profit is doled out to those shareholders, the total rate on corporate profits could be well above the individual tax rates pass-through owners faced prior to the tax code overhaul. Thats still the case, albeit to a lesser extent, with that 20% deduction.

Just in terms of fairness, the pass-throughs still have an advantage, said Richard Prisinzano, director of policy analysis at the Penn Wharton Budget Model. Its just been diminished.

Ial List Of Tax Provisions Affecting Middle

Donald Trumps Tax PlanThe Rich Pay Less, and You Make Up the Difference
  • Tax exclusion for employer-sponsored health insurance and deduction for self-employed health insurance premiums: 79 million
  • Head of household status: 22.1 million
  • American Opportunity Tax Credit : 10.2 million
  • Student loan interest deduction: 12.1 million
  • Tuition and fees deduction: 1.7 million
  • Above-the-line deduction for teachers out-of-pocket expenses: 3.8 million
  • Tax credit for adoption: 74,000
  • Tax exclusion for most Social Security benefits: 29 million
  • Additional standard deduction for the blind and elderly: 14.8 million
  • Above-the-line deduction for certain business expenses, including travel expenses for armed forces reservists: 152,000

Note: Number of tax filing units claiming each provision from the IRS Statistics of Income for the 2014 tax year. The totals do not add because many families may claim multiple tax benefits. Figure for the health insurance exclusion and deduction is an estimate of the number of tax units benefiting from those provisions from the Tax Policy Center. Roughly 160 million Americans are covered by employer plans.

Again, it is also possible that Trump could amend his tax plan to make it more generous for middle-class and working families. But until the Trump administration fills in the missing details, those families will have little idea how it will affect them personallybut plenty of reason to be wary.

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Do You Have President Trumps Tax Returns

We have some, but probably not the ones youre looking for. On September 27, 2020, The New York Times reported it had obtained 17 years worth of President Trumps individual and corporate returns. The Times received those returns from anonymous sources and has said it will not release them publicly to protect those sources. The documents are not available to other news organizations at this time. We will post any returns we are able to verify if and when we acquire them.

We do have a copy of two pages from Trumps 2005 return that were leaked in early 2017.

Child Tax Credits Saw Big Changes

Under the Trump tax plan, the Child Tax Credit increased to $2,000 per child under 17. The credit used to be $1,000. However, the Biden Administration subsequently expanded the CTC for 2021 to $3,000 per child under age 18 or $3,600 for each child you have under 6 years old. The 2021 CTC is also full refundable, so parents benefited from the credit regardless of whether they owe taxes or not.

The CTC expansion was a provision of Bidens American Rescue Plan, but was only included for tax year 2021. In 2022, the program revert to its former scope under Trump.

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A Large Refund Has Been Crucial To His Tax Avoidance

Mr. Trump did face large tax bills after the initial success of The Apprentice television show, but he erased most of these tax payments through a refund. Combined, Mr. Trump initially paid almost $95 million in federal income taxes over the 18 years. He later managed to recoup most of that money, with interest, by applying for and receiving a $72.9 million tax refund, starting in 2010.

The refund reduced his total federal income tax bill between 2000 and 2017 to an annual average of $1.4 million. By comparison, the average American in the top .001 percent of earners paid about $25 million in federal income taxes each year over the same span.

Lower Rates Higher Standard Deduction

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The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act trimmed individual tax rates overall, lowering the top rate to 37% from 39.6%.

Corporations also saw their levies fall, as their income tax rates declined to 21% from 35%.

At the same time, the standard deduction for single filers went up to $12,000 in 2018 from $6,350 in 2017 .

The 2018 tax overhaul also curbed certain itemized deductions.

It also did away with personal exemptions, which once were $4,050 for yourself and each dependent in your household.

Due to the higher standard deduction, fewer people itemized on their returns.

More than 14.6 million individual income tax returns claimed itemized deductions, such as charitable giving write-offs and property taxes paid, during the 2018 tax year, according to IRS data through July 25, 2019 the most recent figures available.

In comparison, 42.2 million returns filed for the 2017 tax year used itemized deductions, according to IRS data through July 25, 2018.

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Is Donald Trump In Debt

The allegations claim that Trump’s “financial challenges are mounting” and he avoided paying income taxes because he both lost so much money and found multiple ways to reduce his tax bills.

Losses in property businesses solely owned and managed by Trump appear to have offset income from his stake in The Apprentice and other entities with multiple owners.

During the first two years of his presidency, Trump relied on business tax credits to reduce his tax obligations.

The Times said $9.7million worth of business investment credits that were submitted after Trump requested an extension to file his taxes allowed him to reduce his income and pay just $750 each in 2016 and 2017.

In 2019, The Times also reported Trump made an alleged billion-dollar loss on hotels and casinos – the largest amount of money any other American citizen has lost during their tax returns.

New York Times Reporting

On September 27, 2020, The New York Times published a report on more than two decades of Trump’s tax-return data, including information from 2017 and 2018, his first two years in office. The Times obtained the data earlier that month. The documents contradict many of Trump’s public claims to have a flourishing and prosperous business empire, showing that as a result of reporting losses in many years and receiving a $72.9 million tax refund, Trump paid no net federal income taxes in eleven of the preceding 15 years. After the refund, Trump had an average tax bill of $1.4 million per year over the 18 years. In 2016, Trump paid only $750 in federal income tax, and in 2017, he paid another $750 in federal income tax. This was much less than other recent presidents paid while in office. His immediate two predecessors, Barack Obama and George W. Bush, routinely paid $100,000 annually in federal income tax, and sometimes far more. In 2017, Trump’s pre-credit tax liability was $7,435,857. All but $750 of this amount was negated by carried-over tax credits, of which he had $22.7 million at the time. It is unclear why Trump chose not to cancel out his federal income tax liability completely. The data does not reveal Trump’s net worth. Tax-return data largely lacks specifics allowing for financial connections to be identified, and the data does not reveal any previously unknown connections to Russia.

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Committee On Ways & Means V Us Department Of The Treasury And Trump

On May 17, 2019, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin again refused to hand over the records subpoenaed by the House Committee on Ways and Means. The IRS refusal to provide the records sought was based on an opinion of Office of Legal CounselSteven Engel dated June 2019 which argued that the House lacked a “legitimate legislative purpose” to warrant receiving the information.

On July 2, 2019, the Committee sued Mnuchin and IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig to enforce the subpoena and obtain six years of Trump’s tax returns. The action, in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia before Judge Trevor McFadden, was taken pursuant to Internal Revenue Code Section 6103 which states that the Treasury Department shall furnish any tax return requested in writing by the Ways & Means Committee. Trump was added to the case as an intervenor. In September 2019, a bipartisan group of six former general counsels to the House of Representatives filed an amicus brief in the case, urging the court to reject Trump’s claims that the House lacks standing to bring the case. In January 2020, the judge stayed proceedings in the case, pending the resolution of the In re McGahn case by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.

Did Trumps Tax Cut Improve The Economy

GOP Tax Plan: Live Coverage

One major reason that President Trump said he wanted to pass his tax plan was to improve the economy. He believed there would be more business investment, which would stimulate the economy and, in turn, help working Americans.

On the basis of the stock market and gross domestic product , the economy is in fact performing very well. But those trends already existed before the TCJA became law. The unemployment rate 3.5% in February 2020 has reached its lowest level in more than 50 years, but data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that unemployment has been steadily declining since 2010. There isnt currently enough evidence to show that Trumps tax cuts lowered the unemployment rate more quickly. Preliminary data from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis , released in February, also suggests that GDP has actually been slowing as of late.

Along with the U.S. bringing in less tax revenue since Trumps tax reform, the U.S. deficit has increased significantly. Data from the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis shows that the federal deficit grew 17% from 2017 to 2018 and 26% from 2018 to 2019. Federal debt passed $1 trillion in 2019 and the Congressional Budget Office expects the deficit to average $1.4 trillion from 2021 to 2030. Whether the size of the deficit should matter is an issue still being debated by economists, but its clear that Trump himself expected his tax cuts to not just lower the deficit but pay it off entirely.

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The Trump Administrations Main Legislative Accomplishment Is A Hugely Regressive Tax Cut

The tax bill that President Trump signed into law in 2017 dramatically cut taxes for wealthy individuals and corporations. It slashed the top individual income tax rate, carved out a special new deduction mainly benefiting wealthy business owners, gutted the tax on large inheritances, and significantly reduced taxes on corporations. Taken together, the changes this law made will dramatically reduce tax bills for the very wealthy, leaving the working and middle class with little benefit. In 2020, the average household in the 1 percent will receive a tax cut of $50,00077 times larger than the average cut for the bottom 80 percent of Americans.

Figure 1

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