Deploy Your Enrolled Agent Continuing Education As a Restaurant Industry Expert
Every restaurant you enter represents an opportunity to expand your business as an enrolled agent. Owners of restaurants have plenty of tax issues that they’re seldom prepared to address. They need tax professionals with the highest level of expertise. That’s what the enrolled agent designation represents. You can start on the road to helping them by conveying that enrolled agents are the only tax practitioners specifically licensed by the IRS.
To demonstrate your particular competence for the restaurant industry, relay to prospective clients your knowledge about tip income. This is a common tax accounting headache for restaurant owners that you learn from your enrolled agent continuing education.
Employees who receive more than $20 per month in tips are required to report the total to their employers. This situation most often occurs in the restaurant industry, but is also applicable to other types of businesses. A restaurant owner must adjust income tax withholding on the wages of employees who report tips. In addition, an employer is responsible for withholding and remitting Social Security and Medicare taxes on the tip income of workers.
Any uncollected taxes on reported tip income are withheld from future paychecks. However, a worker can give money to an employer at any time during the year to cover required taxes. The employee’s W-2 indicates any Social Security and Medicare taxes for tip income that was not collected. If this happens, your tax CPE teaches you to make an adjustment on the employer’s quarterly payroll report for the uncollected amount. The worker is then liable for uncollected payroll taxes. But businesses are still responsible for the employer share of Social Security and Medicare taxes plus other taxes associated with payroll.
Information covered in your enrolled agent CPE allows you to help a restaurant owner with the payroll issues incurred from employee-reported tip income. Employers use Form 4137 to disclose the tip income reported by employees. A recent revision to this form requires the employer’s tax ID number. This permits the IRS to engage in collection of the employer part of Social Security and Medicare taxes on reported tip income.
You enrolled agent training is especially important when restaurant employees report total tip income that’s less than 8 percent of gross receipts for the business. This requires allocating the deficient amount among the W-2s of all employees. A system of reporting allocated tips is usually based upon each employee’s share of total hours or gross receipts.
Restaurants have a special requirement of reporting tips annually on Form 8027. One of these forms is required for each location where more than 10 people are employed working a total of more than 80 hours per day.
These big demands of restaurants related to payroll and tipping of employees are just right for enrolled agents to address. The business owners benefit and your tax practice grows from a focus on such high level use of your enrolled agent expertise.
IRS Circular 230 Disclosure
Pursuant to the requirements of the Internal Revenue Service Circular 230, we inform you that, to the extent any advice relating to a Federal tax issue is contained in this communication, including in any attachments, it was not written or intended to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of (a) avoiding any tax related penalties that may be imposed on you or any other person under the Internal Revenue Code, or (b) promoting, marketing or recommending to another person any transaction or matter addressed in this communication.