Income Taxes: Costly Alternatives

What's the nature of the upcoming alternative minimum tax?

April 15 is still several months away, but a little-known provision is looming ever larger: the alternative minimum tax. Although Democrats and Republicans are duking it out over most proposed tax cuts, both are eager to find ways to keep millions of Americans from getting slammed with this so-called stealth tax:

What is the alternative minimum tax (AMT)? This assessment requires people to calculate the amount of federal tax they owe under both the regular income tax code and a flat-tax option, and then pay the higher amount. Created in 1969--after Congress learned that many wealthy people paid no federal income...

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