December 5, 2014 at 8:26 pm #190611Last Chance CPAParticipant
I have taken the exam twice, but don't remember many questions where specific amount thresholds and phase-outs were required by memory? To really get down to the nitty-gritty details of this exams, should we spend time learning every single number?
I received a 66 and 62 so far, so obviously I don't know!!!December 5, 2014 at 8:32 pm #625585AnonymousInactive
Per Becker, no. Just know that there is a phase-out in place. I've never had a specific phase-out question that required the number. But like you I haven't passed yet. 74 and 72 for me thus far. Rematch in Jan.
Good luck to you.December 5, 2014 at 8:34 pm #625586AnonymousInactive
I wouldn't spend too much time on the phase-outs. From what I remember, Becker told us to just know which ones phase out and which don't.December 5, 2014 at 8:47 pm #625587Rocky123Member
I don't remember a specific phase out question from my REG exam. I blocked the experience, but from what I remember it was straight forward.December 5, 2014 at 8:55 pm #625588taxman89Participant
i had a phase out sim Q that i didnt know the threshold so i spent 30min finding the bastard in the regs…..December 5, 2014 at 8:58 pm #625589pia achMember
Taken it twice and never had to recall any phaseout amount..December 5, 2014 at 9:03 pm #625590MegatronParticipant
I can say on the last 2 times I took REG there was one phase out I would know just in case. The Mom & Pop Rule phase out that allows you to deduct up to $25,000 of Passive Losses against other income. It starts to be phased out with AGI at $100,000 and becomes completely phased out at AGI of $150,000. Good Luck!December 5, 2014 at 9:03 pm #625591go2134Member
Phase-outs & Thresholds: I've only see a couple Review questions where you had to memorize the ceiling for (1) Start-up and Organizational costs, (2) IRA Contributions, and (3) Charitable Contributions; other than that I cannot recall a single question where a phase-out threshold was not provided to you. I highly doubt the Review questions are more demanding than the actual exam will be.
Specific Amounts: I'd recommend knowing the maximum amount related to the most common credits and deductions if you can, but I don't recall anything crazy.
Remember, there is not enough time to have you do a lot of calculations. Instead, they test your knowledge on classification and application of tax items.
I'd recommend making a matrix of the biggest differences relating to Classification and Treatment of the following:
(1) Adjustments vs Itemized Deductions
(2) Ordinary Income/Loss vs Capital G/L
(3) Trusts vs Estates
(4) Individuals vs S-Corps vs C-Corps (including Regular Tax vs AMT)
(5) BASIS, BASIS, and more BASIS
(6) “Insert that thing I'm probably forgetting because I'm too lazy to look through my book”
Other than that, a couple suggestions:
(1) Look at sims if you can, even if you look at the answer immediately and then go through the problem. Explain to yourself “this is why this is (not) included in the answer”.
(2) Review how how to navigate the IRC EFFECTIVELY
(3) Don't smoke crack.
(4) Look at all the answers when reviewing MCQ, especially for strictly conceptual ones, which will allow you to technically answer up to 3 additional situational questions.
(5) Don't procrastinate studying for your own exam tomorrow by writing out long responses to forum posts.December 5, 2014 at 9:05 pm #625592AnonymousInactive
I say keep a list of phaseouts and limits that actually came up in homework and then study only those.December 5, 2014 at 9:05 pm #625593Rocky123Member
I miss REG. It was a lot easier than FAR. And a lot more fun too (if you can consider studying fun).December 5, 2014 at 9:28 pm #625594AnonymousInactive
Were you able to find everything you needed in the Regs?December 5, 2014 at 9:35 pm #625595taxman89Participant
Were you able to find everything you needed in the Regs?”
well i knew (or guessed) and everything else. i knew there was a phaseout amt and the specific # was all i was looking up. i found it but it took me forever. if i didnt have extra time i wouldne have found it and would have got it wrong. In that case it would have saved me a ton of time to have the phase outs memorizedDecember 5, 2014 at 10:02 pm #625596AnonymousInactive
I would know percentages for deductions, the gift tax phaseouts, and the phase outs for property transactions, just in case.December 5, 2014 at 11:22 pm #625597Last Chance CPAParticipant
Thanks all for your responses. I think my low scores are a reflection of overall lack of studying, so just looking for any advantage.
I hate SIMS for REG.December 6, 2014 at 5:59 pm #625598JamesBJamesParticipant
Not really. It's just important to know that there are phase-outs.
I got exactly one question where they asked for a specific dollar amount, and it was on something fairly obscure IIRC. It won't make or break your score.April 4, 2018 at 10:27 am #1756450JoetseParticipant
Ditto to above. Don't focus on it, it's not the focus of the exam by any means. Just know the exemption amount is around $4050 (2017) for the gross income test for the qualifying relatives for dependency qualification. The focus of the exam is basis basis basis! And distributions and contributions to S corps, C corps, and partnerships! and M1 book to tax reconciliation! Those will make or break your exam if you don't know basis and M1 backwards and forwards, and is about 50% of the score on your exam. Everything else is a hodge-podge of ancillary and random stuff from every other section, but you'll likely get a lot of trust, estate, and gift tax questions too and tax preparer responsibility type questions.April 12, 2018 at 9:13 am #1763968LexiParticipant
What about memorizing filing dates? My review says not to…any recent test takers got any of those questions?
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