Perspectives

A roadmap to accounting for income taxes (2020)

Insights and interpretations of the income tax accounting guidance in ASC 740 and IFRSs

Throughout the Roadmap, new guidance has been added, including a new appendix, “Frequently Asked Questions About Tax Reform,” and minor edits have been made to existing guidance to improve its clarity.

Guidance on accounting for income taxes

This Roadmap provides Deloitte’s insights into and interpretations of the income tax accounting guidance in ASC 7401 and the differences between that standard and IFRS® Standards (in Appendix F). The income tax accounting framework has been in place for many years, however, views on the application of that framework to current transactions continue to evolve because structures and tax laws are continually changing. Therefore, use of this Roadmap, though it is intended as a helpful resource, is not a substitute for consultation with Deloitte professionals on complex income tax accounting questions or transactions.

The body of this Roadmap combines the income tax accounting rules from ASC 740 with Deloitte’s interpretations and examples in a comprehensive, reader-friendly format. The Roadmap reflects Accounting Standards Updates (ASUs) issued by the FASB through December 31, 2019. Each chapter of this publication typically starts with a brief introduction and includes excerpts from ASC 740 or related guidance, Deloitte’s interpretations of those excerpts, and examples to illustrate the relevant guidance. (Some of the calculations in the examples use rounded numbers for simplicity.) The Roadmap includes pending content from recently issued ASUs, some of which may already apply to some entities and others of which may allow for early adoption. Readers should refer to the transition guidance in the FASB Accounting Standards Codification or in the relevant ASU to determine the effective date(s) of the pending guidance.

Throughout the Roadmap, new guidance has been added and minor edits have been made to existing guidance to improve its clarity. The organization of this Roadmap has been changed significantly from that of previous versions so that the information is presented in a more logical and user-friendly manner. In addition, guidance on accounting for the tax effects of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which was contained in Appendix B in the 2018 edition of this Roadmap, has been incorporated into the appropriate chapters in this edition.

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