The new federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act is the biggest revision of federal tax law since 1986, and its implications for businesses have only just begun to unfold. Some of the major questions about its impact hinges on the type of business being taxed—a pass-through or C corporation; small, medium or large business; or domestic or multinational company.

To make up for the difference between the C corporation and pass-through tax rates, the new federal law includes a maximum 20 percent qualified business tax deduction for certain pass-throughs, excluding personal service providers such as accountants and attorneys, and other businesses that rely on the skill and reputation of an employee, such as a chef. This provision expires in 2025.

"It's one of the most complicated provisions in the tax act," says Mark Salsbury, a tax attorney with the Minneapolis office of Ballard Spahr. "It is, for small businesses, the most important tax benefit," he says. "There might be some structuring that might be considered to maximize the benefit."

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