I have long stated that Congress should not be allowed to play with taxes. I still mean that. But since it is bound to happen, I should be happy when it results in the IRS issuing a new form to track the changes. A new form means I get to charge more.
The IRS has recently added two forms to the 1040 series for 2009. The first was the Schedule M. This form calculates the Making Work Pay credit that is part of the Obama stimulus package. This is a form almost everyone is going to have to use and I see a lot of confusion arising. Not only a form to charge but the possibility of new clients.
The new Schedule L documents the additions to the standard deduction for non-itemizers. Last year, I just added the real estate tax to the standard deduction since there was no form. Now we have a form. Congress added new car sales tax and net disaster losses to the deduction and that required a form to keep track of it all. Ka-ching.
It may seem rather crass to think of new forms as money in the bank. But, both new forms further complicate an already convoluted tax code and make it harder for the average taxpayer to confidently prepare their own return. The forms are needed to calculate and document the deductions and credits. Could these programs have been done outside the tax system? I don't know. The Cash for Clunkers program isn't run through the IRS and it seems to be working quite well. Something to think about Congress.
Also, please think about why the taxpayers have to pay more to prepare their taxes because you insist on using the tax code to distribute pork and look good. (Oh, and drop any finger pointing. You all use the tax code as a reward or punishment.)