HLB INTERNATIONAL APPOINTS SIX NEW MEMBERS: in Sweden, Nicaragua, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Panama, France & Guyana


HLB International, one of the leading global accountancy networks with presence in over 110 countries, has recently signed new members in Sweden, Nicaragua, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Panama, France and Guyana.

In Sweden, Wint joins the network with 75 staff in eight locations, including Stockholm and Gothenburg. Established in 1955, the firm offers audit & accounting, tax, corporate finance and advisory services. HLB International is already present in Sweden with member Revisorsgruppen.

In Nicaragua, Guadamuz Ruedam Martinez & Cia joins the network in Managua. The firm, established in 1989, ranks 2d nationally and provides services to the private and public sector, NGOs and international organisations.

In Bosnia-Herzegovina, Revik doo joins the network in Sarajevo. Established in 1998, the firm provides services in the industry, retail and wholesale, financial institutions sectors (banks, insurance, microcredit organisations, securities) as well as public sector and NGOs. Partners are Big Four-trained.

In Panama, Trejos, Egan & Asociados, established in 2007, joins the network where it will find opportunities to introduce the tax benefits of Panama to international business in addition to providing audit, accounting and advisory services.

In France, COGEP joins the network with offices covering about one third of the French territory, in the North West of the country. Established in 1971, the firm, which provides accounting, audit, tax and a large variety of advisory services, is today one of the country’s top ten financial services firms. HLB International is already present in France with members HLB Magnin Gecors, HLB Groupe Cofimé, HLB Fiprovex, Inkipio and HLB Maupard Fiduciaire.

In Guyana, Bisheswar, Seebarran & Co joins the network. Established in 1994, the firm provides audit, tax and advisory services to the public and private sectors.


Unused ITINS to Expire After Five Years

Individual Taxpayer Identification Numbers (ITINs) will expire if not used on a federal income tax return for five consecutive years, the Internal Revenue Service announced today. To give all interested parties time to adjust and allow the IRS to reprogram its systems, the IRS will not begin deactivating ITINs until 2016.

The new, more uniform policy applies to any ITIN, regardless of when it was issued. Only about a quarter of the 21 million ITINs issued since the program began in 1996 are being used on tax returns. The new policy will ensure that anyone who legitimately uses an ITIN for tax purposes can continue to do so, while at the same time resulting in the likely eventual expiration of millions of unused ITINs.

Developed in consultation with taxpayers, their representatives and other stakeholders, the new policy replaces the existing one that went into effect on Jan. 1, 2013.

Under the old policy, announced in November 2012, ITINs issued after Jan. 1, 2013 would have automatically expired after five years, even if used properly and regularly by taxpayers. Though ITINs issued before 2013 were unaffected by that change, the IRS said at the time that it would explore options for deactivating or refreshing the information relating to these older ITINs.

ITINs play a critical role in the tax administration system and assist with the collection of taxes from foreign nationals, resident and nonresident aliens and others who have filing or payment obligations under U.S. law. Designed specifically for tax administration purposes, ITINs are only issued to people who are not eligible to obtain a Social Security Number.

Under the new policy:

  • An ITIN will expire for any taxpayer who fails to file a federal income tax return for five consecutive tax years.
  • Any ITIN will remain in effect as long as a taxpayer continues to file U.S. tax returns. This includes ITINs issued after Jan. 1, 2013. These taxpayers will no longer face mandatory expiration of their ITINs and the need to reapply starting in 2018, as was the case under the old policy.
  • To ease the burden on taxpayers and give their representatives and other stakeholders time to adjust, the IRS will not begin deactivating unused ITINs until 2016. This grace period will allow anyone with a valid ITIN, regardless of when it was issued, to still file a valid return during the upcoming tax-filing season.
  • A taxpayer whose ITIN has been deactivated and needs to file a U.S. return can reapply using Form W-7. As with any ITIN application, original documents, such as passports, or copies of documents certified by the issuing agency must be submitted with the form.

Further details, including information on how and when taxpayers with expired ITINs will be notified, will be posted on at a later date.

HLB Gross Collins, P.C. Announces Opening of Florida Office

HLB Gross Collins, P.C. announces the opening of an office in Boca Raton, Florida.  The expansion comes after growth in new client activity for the firm within Florida. HLB Gross Collins, P.C., one of Atlanta’s top 25 CPA firms, has over 40 years of history operating out of an Atlanta-based office but serving clients throughout the United States and overseas.

Throughout HLB Gross Collins, P.C.’s history the firm has been proactive in strategically building upon existing expertise in order to continue to widen the firm’s reach into the markets served. Since 1989, the firm has been an active member of HLB International, one of the world’s largest networks of professional accounting firms.  HLB Gross Collins, P.C. is a highly-specialized and industry targeted firm which provides clients with deep knowledge and expertise that is specific to their business.  The firm’s opening of a new office in Florida is another step in HLB Gross Collins, P.C.’s continued efforts to efficiently and effectively provide exceptional service and value to clients.

In regards to the new office, HLB Gross Collins, P.C. CEO, Michael Bohling stated, “The expansion allows us to efficiently serve our growing client base in the Southeast.  Our firm has clients throughout the country, but we are particularly active throughout Georgia and Florida.   Our new office provides greater connectivity with these clients and will allow us to continue to provide the highest level of client service.”

HLB Gross Collins is Pleased to Sponsor the Transatlantic Business Conference

HLB Gross Collins, P.C. is honored to be a key sponsor of the 2014 British American Business Council Transatlantic Conference. With top business leaders from the UK and US, as well as some of the most prominent executives engaged in transatlantic business, this forum sets the stage for fruitful networking and development of business relationships with potential clients and business partners throughout North America and the UK.

The conference takes place in Atlanta May 20-22 and will involve high-level business discussions that range in topic from customer engagement, privacy & data issues, mobile & financial technologies, changing demographics, creative arts, and international trade.

As a sponsor, HLB Gross Collins, P.C. has been active in the planning and the coordination of the event and will also have several representative present and speaking at various event, sessions, and panel discussions.


Georgia—Sales and Use Tax: Consumable Supplies Added to Manufacturing Exemption

Georgia legislation has been enacted affecting the sales and use tax exemption that applies to (1) the sale, use, or storage of machinery or equipment necessary and integral to the manufacture of tangible personal property; and (2) the sale, use, storage, or consumption of industrial materials or packaging supplies. Under the amendments in the legislation, “consumable supplies” are expressly included within the definition of “equipment,” an item that is covered by the exemption. Previously, consumable supplies were expressly excluded from the definition of “equipment.”   Effective Date is July 1, 2014.

As amended by the legislation, the definition of “consumable supplies” means tangible personal property (other than machinery, industrial materials, packaging supplies, and energy) that is consumed or expended during the manufacture of tangible personal property. The qualifying phrase “regardless of whether the items would otherwise be considered consumable supplies” is removed from a list of items given as examples of what qualifies for the exemption as necessary and integral to the manufacture of tangible personal property. The items listed as examples are machinery or equipment used to provide safety for employees working at a manufacturing plant, such as safety machinery and equipment required by federal or state law, gloves, ear plugs, face masks, protective eyewear, hard hats or helmets, and breathing apparatuses.

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