Treasury watchdog finds no political pressure on tax analysis

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin   Mark Wilson  Getty Images

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin Mark Wilson Getty Images

The U.S. Treasury and the IRS on Thursday put out new guidance and withholding tables for employers that incorporate changes from the new tax law. They should continue to use the 2017 withholding tables until implementing the 2018 withholding tables. President Donald Trump and the Republican architects of the tax plan have deflected criticism of the unpopular legislation, insisting at every turn that Americans will come to love the new law when they see their heftier paychecks next month - with less money withheld in anticipation of lower income taxes.

The department's inspector general launched the investigation after Treasury Secretary Steven MnuchinSteven Terner MnuchinMark Mellman: History's judgment Trump's motorcade greeted with chants of "lock him up" in NYC Treasury watchdog probes lack of tax plan analysis from Mnuchin MORE faced intense criticism over the scoring of the GOP tax plan. That means employees could start seeing the changes reflected in their paychecks next month, the IRS said.

The IRS also plans to to help individual taxpayers determine the correct amount of withholding by the end of February. Meanwhile, tax professionals say there are some other things you need to do now to get ready for tax season next year.

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Treasury released a brief one-page analysis of the plan on December 11, claiming the proposal would increase tax revenue by about $1.8 trillion over 10 years. "Taxpayers can not make these changes until the revised Form W-4 is published, which the IRS has announced will be forthcoming in the coming months".

But the taxing service did note that the new tax rates will require a new approach to the W-4 forms and that it should have the new forms by 2019. Form W-4 and the revised calculator will reflect additional changes in the new law, such as changes in available itemized deductions, increases in the child tax credit, the new dependent credit and repeal of dependent exemptions. The effort will be created to help workers ensure that they are not having too much or too little withholding taken out of their pay. Treasury would achieve that, the lawmakers surmised in the letter, by pushing the IRS to change its formula for withholdings. The IRS will work with the business and payroll community to encourage workers to file new Forms W-4 next year and share information on changes in the new tax law that impact withholding.

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