Good News from the IRS It Owes Phone Users 14 Billion Dollars - - - and that means you!
Fairfax, CA -- (ReleaseWire) -- 08/01/2006 --In a move that is sure to please every household and business in America, telecommunications companies have stopped billing the Federal Excise Tax (FET) as of today. In May, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) ordered all phone companies in the USA to stop collecting the 3% FET or phone tax for long distance calls and other qualified telecom services.
Celebrations will continue into next year because the IRS will also issue refunds or tax credits to one-hundred million long distance and cellular subscribers estimated at over 14 billion dollars, for qualified amounts paid since February 28, 2003.
In order to return so much money to so many phone users, Uncle Sam will add lines on all 2006 income tax forms. Individuals with residential services will be able to check a box and receive an arbitrary amount of refund, called the “safe harbor”. Phone users accountants and telecommunications professionals across the nation are eagerly waiting for the IRS to announce the exact amount to be refunded under safe harbor. Estimates range between $30 and $50. Yes, every taxpayer in America that has had phone service in the past 41 months will be entitled to the safe harbor amount, no matter how much was actually paid for the FET. Safe harbor is an option for individuals and is not available for businesses, at all.
Bob Schwartz, better known as The Phone Tax Refund Guy, has been getting excise tax refunds for over 20 years. He stated, “The refunding of this inappropriate 108 year old tax is way overdue. A handful of attorneys and about a dozen brave corporations have made this possible through lawsuits and appeals that were ultimately decided in favor of the tax-payer.
To claim a refund one must identify the qualifying telecom service and zero in on the exact amount that what was collected for it. This can be especially challenging on business bills where local and long distance services are combined. It is important to remember that the FET will remain on bills for local services.”
An expert in the filed of Telecom Expense Management, Schwartz is the longtime CEO of Bill Correctors. Inc. He is also co-chair of the FET Refund Committee for the newly formed Telecommunications Expense Management Association (TEMA). The association is expecting 75-100 member firms with over ten-thousand clients. Schwartz will be training members to file claims that will follow all IRS guidelines.
Schwartz continues, “Individuals that have paid more than the safe harbor amount, and all businesses, may reclaim every penny owed to them plus interest, but they will have the detailed task of gathering old bills, extracting accurate information, filling out quarterly claims for each vendor, and maintaining adequate documentation. Some companies will receive refunds of several million dollars. This whole issue definitely puts everyone on notice that auditing phone bills can lead to substantial savings.”
To help both individuals and businesses do it themselves and maximize their claim amounts Schwartz offers “My Phone Tax Refund Booklet”. Those who want a copy of this plain-English guide may register at www.fetrefunds.com The site includes helpful tips, a history of the tax, cites cases leading to its demise, and it features a section to help keep people informed of new developments as more information is released. The company will continue offering FET claim processing services to mid-sized and large businesses as well.
About Bill Correctors, Inc.
Begun in 1983 as a premier Telecom Expense Management (TEM) company, BCI www.billcorrectors.com manages and reviews bills from all Telecommunications voice, data, and cellular providers in order to cut telecom confusion and cost for clients. Based in Fairfax, California, the company consolidates telecom billings, negotiates contracts, and issues detailed enterprise-wide weekly expense reports, as well as various monthly management reports. It also provides cost saving optimization services through invoice reviews, contract compliance reviews, FET claim processing services, policy and procedure assistance as well as order desk services. With a complete set of TEM Relief Services from BCI www.temrelief.com your businesses may never have to deal with the phone company again.
Media Contact: Bob Schwartz (415) 457-3000 x 215