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Latest tax reform proposals in the US

Latest tax reform proposals in the US

The White House and representatives of the US House and Senate have released a ‘unified framework’ for tax reform.

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On 27 September 2017, the White House, Republican leaders of the US House and Senate, and the chairs of the House and Senate tax-writing committees released a ‘unified framework’ for tax reform (the ‘framework’). A statement from the House Committee on Ways and Means indicates that the framework “serves as a template for the tax-writing committees that will develop legislation through a transparent and inclusive committee process.” The framework is expected to be the starting point for tax-writing committees as they flesh out the details of tax legislation. The framework is a short and high-level document and unlike the tax reform ‘joint statement’ released in July it references a few ‘revenue raising’ proposals.

Although the framework does not provide significant technical details for the policy proposals outlined in the release, it sets forth a directional steer of the US federal tax reform agenda. Notably, and as discussed in greater detail in this Tax News Flash, the key business tax takeaways announced in the framework include the following:

  • Lower US federal corporate top marginal tax rate from 35 percent to 20 percent;
  • Lower maximum federal income tax rate of 25 percent applied to ‘business income’ of pass-through entities;
  • Mandatory repatriation tax on historical accumulated profits of foreign subsidiaries;
  • Full exemption for dividends paid by foreign subsidiaries relating to post-reform earnings (i.e., a European-style ‘participation exemption’ regime);
  • Modification of CFC anti-deferral rules; 
  • Immediate expensing of new capital investments in depreciable assets (other than structures) for at least five years;
  • Partial limitation of deductibility of net interest expense (at least for C corporations); and
  • Elimination of many business deductions and credits, but preservation of the R&D credit.

For further information please contact:

Fred Gander

Jonathan Galin

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