Douglas Tax Blog. U.S.A.
A new smaller tax form was one of the biggest goals of the new administration and Congress during the last election cycle was simplification of the tax code. You heard it mentioned in the campaign’s, during the contests, the debates, even after the elections were over, with promises of reduced paperwork and a much simpler tax code, that would make life so much easier for everyone. It seems that most of that was just that, political promises.
Even though the most commonly used tax form, the 1040, will be reduced to the size of a postcard, two pages for most everyone, delivering a promise the Trump administration made during the election, and the two pages seem to be a smaller amount of paperwork at first glance, the ability to claim most of your deductions is left to the additional pages that have been put on different pages, six in total. A simple gimmick to satisfy the masses, fulfilling a campaign promise, while not really doing anything at all. The new smaller tax form, is not smaller in reality, the pages are just changed from one area to another.
Experts have said that the new postcard system will simplify the system for many taxpayers, fulfilling the campaign promise of President Trump, but most taxpayers will still have to go to great lengths to finish their tax returns. The new tax law which increases the standard deduction by a large amount, means that millions of Americans will have to go the extra length and fill out the worksheets to be able to claim the deduction, nullifying the time spent filling out paperwork. So it seems that only part of the promise of simplification has been kept, simplification, but the idea that it would take less time seems not to have come to fruition.
While the new smaller tax form is a step in the right direction, it simply doesn’t go far enough. Simplification of the tax code requires more effort and cooperation, unlikely with the current Congressional makeup. So it seems the small tax form is all we will achieve for the foreseeable future.