IRS Warns Of Employee Retention Credit Fraud

If you are running a business, it is likely you have heard of the Employee Retention Credit (ERC). The ERC is a refundable tax credit for businesses and tax-exempt organizations that had employees during the COVID-19 pandemic and were affected by the pandemic itself. The requirements are different depending on the time period for which you claim the credit. If you do qualify, this could be a good opportunity to offset some of the effects of these last two crop years.

You can still apply for the ERC assuming your business qualifies. You must file before March 31, 2024, so you have some time to determine if your business qualifies. We encourage you to visit with your tax professional to determine if your business qualifies for the credit.

Keep a couple of things in mind as you navigate this process. The IRS has announced that they have suspended processing ERC claims until the end of the year due to a high volume of fraudulent claims. This indicates fraudulent claims are currently an issue for the IRS. Obviously, they are reviewing the applications very closely. If you are going to apply for ERC, be sure you have your paperwork filled out correctly. We highly encourage you to have your application reviewed by your tax professional before filing. You don’t want to apply for money you are not qualified to receive. Anyone who incorrectly claims the credit will have to pay it back and may owe penalties and interest, so there is at least that risk involved. Keep in mind, the only way to claim the credit is on a federal employment tax return which makes this sensitive information.

One item the IRS has recently pointed to as the cause of the fraudulent claims is aggressive ERC marketing. To learn more about the ERC (including answers to your ERC questions), go to

This page also highlights some of the warning signs of aggressive ERC marketing. Every situation is different, so be sure you qualify before applying for the credit. Again, your tax professional should be able to determine that for you.

The ERC may be a great opportunity for your business, but as with any government program, you want to be sure you get the details right when you put your application together.

Texas Cotton Ginners Association provided this article.

The Burton Farmers Gin Is Looking Sharper Than Ever!

History comes alive at the Official Cotton Gin Museum of Texas, home of the oldest operating cotton gin in America. The Burton Farmers Gin is powered by a 1925 Bessemer engine — the largest of its vintage still operating in the USA. The museum is recognized by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, Smithsonian Institution, National Trust for Historic Preservation and National Register of Historic Places. Museum guests are transported to an era that defined the American Spirit. Thousands of visitors from around the world tour the historic cotton gin where it has stood since 1914.

Earlier this year, it was decided to undertake the daunting task of replacing the saw blades in the Burton Farmers Gin. It’s hard to nail down an exact time frame, but our best estimation dates the old blades back to the 1950s.

The process began with a thorough cleaning of the gin stands to prepare for the work ahead. On Feb. 28, our new friends from Precision Gin Works arrived, disassembled the stands and removed the saw blades. Now that the saws were gone and the stands were open, it was time for even more cleaning. Thanks to great workers, all the seeds, lint and trash were removed. Interior parts of the stands were cleaned, sanded and painted to help everything run smoothly.

On March 7, the new saws were received and installed in the stands. This was just in time for the ginner workdays happening on the March 9-10. The project took just over a week to complete and gave everyone involved a more comprehensive understanding and better appreciation for how our faithful Burton Farmer’s Gin operates. With these new blades, she’s ready to take on the next 109 years.

Stay tuned for more information on this project and how it compares to what the gin would have done to sharpen the saws through its operation!

The Texas Cotton Gin Museum, located in Burton, Texas, provided this article.

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