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AMT bill passed – but in time?

A bill that aims to spare millions of taxpayers from the alternative minimum tax (AMT) on their 2007 returns was sent to President George W. Bush late yesterday.

The president is expected to sign the bill into law, but the late-hour passage of the legislation makes it unclear whether the IRS can print up tax forms reflecting the change in time for the usual January kickoff to the tax filing season.

The result? Taxpayers may have to wait until Feb. 4 to start filing those 1040s.

The result of that? “It is likely that there will be some delays, including delays of some refunds,” Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson told the Associated Press. He said the Treasury Department and the IRS would keep taxpayers in the info loop.

The new law, if the president signs it, will adjust the tax which was originally enacted in 1969 for a small number of high income earners. But because the rate was not tied to inflation, it had to be adjusted to avoid catching more middle-income earners pulling in between $75,000 and $200,000 a year. The bill passed yesterday provides a one year AMT relief for nonrefundable personal credits and increase the AMT exemption amount to $66,250 for joint filers and $44,350 for single filers

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