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Valuation Strategies article:
Do Not Be Too Quick To Discount A Discount For Controlling Interests

Valuation Strategies CoverThis was a case where the Estate’s business valuator merely went through the motions without considering the facts in the case. (The business valuation company was one of the country’s largest). By doing so they caused the estate to overpay estate tax by approximately 2.3 million dollars. The widow’s consultant, based merely on common sense, suspected that the companies were overvalued. You will see from the article that I prepared amended valuations and an amended estate tax return and secured an estate tax refund in the amount of $2,689,270 refund which included interest in the amount of $266,084. …
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September 6, 2019

The tax cost of divorce has risen for many

Are you divorced or in the process of divorcing? If so, it’s critical to understand how the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) has changed the tax treatment of alimony. Unfortunately, for many couples, the news isn’t good — the tax cost of divorce has risen. What’s changed? Under previous rules, a taxpayer who paid alimony was … Continue reading The tax cost of divorce has risen for many

Double up on tax benefits by donating appreciated artwork

From a tax perspective, appreciated artwork can make one of the best charitable gifts. Generally, donating appreciated property is doubly beneficial because you can both enjoy a valuable tax deduction and avoid the capital gains taxes you’d owe if you sold the property. The extra benefit from donating artwork comes from the fact that the top long-term … Continue reading Double up on tax benefits by donating appreciated artwork

How businesses can assess risk of worker misclassification

Classifying a worker as an independent contractor frees a business from its portion of payroll tax liability and allows it to forgo providing overtime pay, unemployment compensation and other employee benefits. It also frees the business from responsibility for withholding income taxes and the worker’s share of payroll taxes. For these reasons, the federal government … Continue reading How businesses can assess risk of worker misclassification

4 types of information you need to prepare for disaster

When you read the phrase “disaster prep,” you may envision bottled water and boarded-up windows. But information is also a critical asset to have following a natural or manmade catastrophe. Here are four specific types of information you need: Personal identification records. These documents will enable you to prove the identity of your family members, maintain … Continue reading 4 types of information you need to prepare for disaster

August 1, 2019

Know a teacher? Tell ’em about this tax break!

When teachers are setting up their classrooms for the new school year, it’s common for them to pay for a portion of their classroom supplies out of pocket. A special tax break allows these educators to deduct some of their expenses. This educator expense deduction is especially important now due to some changes under the … Continue reading Know a teacher? Tell ’em about this tax break!

Planning for the net investment income tax

Despite its name, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) didn’t cut all types of taxes. It left several taxes unchanged, including the 3.8% tax on net investment income (NII) of high-income taxpayers. You’re potentially liable for the NII tax if your modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) exceeds $200,000 ($250,000 for joint filers and qualifying … Continue reading Planning for the net investment income tax

Consider the flexibility of a self-directed IRA

Traditional and Roth IRAs can be relatively “safe” retirement-savings vehicles, depending on what they’re invested in. But a drawback is that they limit your investment choices. A self-directed IRA gives you more flexibility in your investment choices but comes with greater risk as well. Gaining more control A self-directed IRA is simply an IRA that … Continue reading Consider the flexibility of a self-directed IRA

Tax document retention guidelines for small businesses

You may have breathed a sigh of relief after filing your 2018 income tax return (or requesting an extension). But is your office strewn with reams of paper consisting of years’ worth of tax returns, receipts, canceled checks and other financial records? Or perhaps your computer desktop is filled with a multitude of digital tax-related … Continue reading Tax document retention guidelines for small businesses

June 25, 2019

Estate planning portability lives on under the TCJA

When the TCJA was passed, the big estate planning news was that the federal gift and estate tax exclusion doubled from $5 million to an inflation-indexed $10 million. It was further indexed for inflation to $11.18 million for 2018 and now $11.4 million for 2019. Somewhat lost in the clamor, however, was (and is) the … Continue reading Estate planning portability lives on under the TCJA

Be ready for anything with regular business valuations

Do you know the current value of your business? Even if you’re not considering selling your company or otherwise transferring its ownership right now, it could happen sooner than you think. In some cases, an ownership transfer becomes suddenly appealing when a company struggles to the extent that a sale becomes the best avenue for … Continue reading Be ready for anything with regular business valuations

Could an FLP help your business succession plan?

One of the biggest concerns for business owners is succession planning — transferring ownership and control of the company to the next generation. Often, the best time taxwise to start transferring ownership is long before the owner is ready to give up control of the business. A family limited partnership (FLP) can help owners enjoy … Continue reading Could an FLP help your business succession plan?

Tax calendar

July 15 — If the monthly deposit rule applies, employers must deposit the tax for payments in June for Social Security, Medicare, withheld income tax and nonpayroll withholding. July 31 — If you have employees, a federal unemployment tax (FUTA) deposit is due if the FUTA liability through June exceeds $500. ·      The second quarter Form 941 (“Employer’s … Continue reading Tax calendar

No surprises: Why you should check your tax bracket

Many taxpayers learned some tough lessons upon completing their 2018 tax returns regarding the changes brought forth by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA). If you were one of them, or even if you weren’t, now’s a good time to check your bracket to avoid any unpleasant surprises next April. Under the TCJA, the … Continue reading No surprises: Why you should check your tax bracket

June 18, 2019

TCJA inspires many business owners to reconsider entity choice

For tax years beginning in 2018 and beyond, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) created a flat 21% federal income tax rate for C corporations. Under prior law, C corporations were taxed at rates as high as 35%. Meanwhile, the TCJA also reduced individual income tax rates, which apply to sole proprietorships and owners … Continue reading TCJA inspires many business owners to reconsider entity choice

Consider the tax advantages of qualified small business stock

While the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) reduced most ordinary-income tax rates for individuals, it didn’t change long-term capital gains rates. They remain at 0%, 15% and 20%. The capital gains rates now have their own statutory bracket amounts, but the 0% rate generally applies to taxpayers in the bottom two ordinary-income tax brackets … Continue reading Consider the tax advantages of qualified small business stock

Ensuring your long-term care policy is tax-qualified

A long-term care insurance policy supplements your traditional health insurance by covering services that assist you or a loved one with one or more activities of daily living. Such activities include eating, bathing, dressing, toileting and transferring (in and out of bed, for example). Long-term care coverage is relatively expensive, but it may be possible … Continue reading Ensuring your long-term care policy is tax-qualified

Vacation homes: Do you understand the tax nuances?

Owning a vacation home can offer tax breaks, but they may differ from those associated with a primary residence. The key is whether a vacation home is used solely for personal enjoyment or is also rented out to tenants. Sorting it out If your vacation home is not rented out, or if you rent it … Continue reading Vacation homes: Do you understand the tax nuances?

May 22, 2019

Our Firm Manager obtains Professional Designation

We’d like to congratulate our Firm Manager, Amanda Gabel on being awarded the designation of Public Accounting Firm Manager (PAFM). Amanda has been with us since 2007.

May 1, 2019

Innocent spouse rules offer protection under some circumstances

Must one spouse pay the tax resulting from a fabrication or omission by another spouse on a jointly filed tax return? It depends. If the spouse qualifies, he or she may be able to avoid personal tax liability under the “innocent spouse” rules. Joint filing status Generally, married taxpayers benefit overall by filing a joint … Continue reading Innocent spouse rules offer protection under some circumstances

Deducting business losses for pass-through entities

It’s not uncommon for businesses to sometimes generate tax losses. But the tax law limits deductible losses in some situations. And the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) further restricts the amount of losses that sole proprietors, partners, S corporation shareholders and, typically, limited liability company (LLC) members can now deduct. If your company operates under one … Continue reading Deducting business losses for pass-through entities

Send your kids to day camp and you may get a tax break

Among the many great challenges of parenthood is what to do with your kids when school lets out. Do you keep them at home and try to captivate their attention yourself or with the help of sitters? Or do you send them off to the wide variety of day camps now in operation? There’s no … Continue reading Send your kids to day camp and you may get a tax break

Should you be worried about an IRS audit?

Now that you’ve likely filed your 2018 tax return, one troubling afterthought may come to mind: Could I get audited? The mere notion strikes fear into most people’s hearts. And for good reason — under a worst-case scenario, an audit could take up lots of your time, create an enormous amount of stress and leave you with … Continue reading Should you be worried about an IRS audit?

April 1, 2019

Running your personal finances like a business

Most individuals don’t regard themselves as businesses, trying to turn a profit and beat the competition. But, occasionally, it may help to look at your financial situation this way to determine where you might cut expenses and boost cash flow. Here are some tips. Lay out your financials Where an executive might reach for financial … Continue reading Running your personal finances like a business

Business vs. hobby: The tax rules have changed

If you generate income from a passion such as cooking, woodworking, raising animals — or anything else — beware of the tax implications. They’ll vary depending on whether the activity is treated as a hobby or a business. The bottom line: The income generated by your activity is taxable. But different rules apply to how … Continue reading Business vs. hobby: The tax rules have changed

Are income taxes taking a bite out of your trusts?

If your estate plan includes one or more trusts, review them before you file your tax return. Or, if you’ve already filed it, look carefully at how your trusts were affected. Income taxes often take an unexpected bite out of these asset-protection vehicles. 3 ways to soften the blow For trusts, there are income thresholds … Continue reading Are income taxes taking a bite out of your trusts?

Small business owners should double-check their tax returns

Now more than ever, small business owners need to double-check their tax returns before filing. Why? Because many of the changes ushered in by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act take effect with the 2018 tax year. So, if you’re about to file, perhaps slow down and go over your return one more time with … Continue reading Small business owners should double-check their tax returns

Tax calendar

April 15 — Besides being the last day to file (or extend) your 2018 personal return and pay any tax that’s due, 2019 first quarter estimated tax payments for individuals, trusts and calendar-year corporations are due today. Also due are 2018 returns for trusts and calendar-year estates and C corporations, FinCEN Form 114 (“Report of Foreign Bank … Continue reading Tax calendar

March 1, 2019

Weigh the tax impact of income vs. growth when investing

As the 2018 tax-filing season heats up, investors have much to consider. Whether you structured your portfolio to emphasize income over growth — or vice versa, or perhaps a balance of the two — will have a substantial impact on your tax liability. Let’s take a look at a couple of the most significant “big picture” issues that affect … Continue reading Weigh the tax impact of income vs. growth when investing

Deducting charitable gifts depends on a variety of factors

Whether you’re planning to claim charitable deductions on your 2018 return or make donations for 2019, be sure you know how much you’re allowed to deduct. Your deduction depends on more than just the actual amount you donate. What you give Among the biggest factors affecting your deduction is what you give. For example: Cash … Continue reading Deducting charitable gifts depends on a variety of factors

Did you repair your business property or improve it?

Repairs to tangible property, such as buildings, machinery, equipment or vehicles, can provide businesses a valuable current tax deduction — as long as the so-called repairs weren’t actually “improvements.” The costs of incidental repairs and maintenance can be immediately expensed and deducted on the current year’s income tax return. But costs incurred to improve tangible … Continue reading Did you repair your business property or improve it?

There may be unclaimed property with your name on it

It may sound too good to be true, but there may be valuable unclaimed property out there with your name on it. The term generally refers to financial assets being held for owners who haven’t been found. Just a few examples include uncashed dividend and payroll checks; unclaimed tax refunds; and insurance payments, refunds or … Continue reading There may be unclaimed property with your name on it

February 5, 2019

Multistate resident? Watch out for double taxation

Contrary to popular belief, there’s nothing in the U.S. Constitution or federal law that prohibits multiple states from collecting tax on the same income. Although many states provide tax credits to prevent double taxation, those credits are sometimes unavailable. If you maintain residences in more than one state, here are some points to keep in … Continue reading Multistate resident? Watch out for double taxation

You’ve got time: Small businesses can still set up a 2018 SEP plan

Are you a high-income small-business owner who doesn’t currently have a tax-advantaged retirement plan set up for yourself? A Simplified Employee Pension (SEP) plan may be just what you need, and now may be a great time to establish one. A SEP plan has high contribution limits and is simple to set up. Best of … Continue reading You’ve got time: Small businesses can still set up a 2018 SEP plan

Fewer taxpayers to qualify for home office deduction

Working from home has become commonplace for people in many jobs. But just because you have a home office space doesn’t mean you can deduct expenses associated with it. Beginning with the 2018 tax year, fewer taxpayers will qualify for the home office deduction. Here’s why. Changes under the TCJA For employees, home office expenses … Continue reading Fewer taxpayers to qualify for home office deduction

Throwing snowballs at your mountain of debt

Many people start the year intending to get out of debt, yet end the year owing just as much, if not more. One approach that might yield success is called “throwing snowballs.” Under this method, you organize your debts from the lowest balance to the highest balance and begin paying off the debt on top … Continue reading Throwing snowballs at your mountain of debt

January 4, 2019

Installment sales: A viable option for transferring assets

Are you considering transferring real estate, a family business or other assets you expect to appreciate dramatically in the future? If so, an installment sale may be a viable option. Its benefits include the ability to freeze asset values for estate tax purposes and remove future appreciation from your taxable estate. Giving away vs. selling … Continue reading Installment sales: A viable option for transferring assets

How to trim the fat from your inventory

Inventory is expensive, so it needs to be as lean as possible. Here are some ways to trim the fat from your inventory without compromising revenue and customer service. Objective inventory counts Effective inventory management starts with a physical inventory count. Accuracy is essential to knowing your cost of goods sold — and to identifying … Continue reading How to trim the fat from your inventory

Laying the groundwork for your 2018 tax return

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) made many changes to tax breaks for individuals. Let’s look at some specific areas to review as you lay the groundwork for filing your 2018 return. Personal exemptions For 2018 through 2025, the TCJA suspends personal exemptions. This will substantially increase taxable income for large families. However, enhancements … Continue reading Laying the groundwork for your 2018 tax return

7 ways to prevent elder financial abuse

As tax season ramps up, so do the efforts of scam artists looking to steal people’s financial data and money. Such fraudulent activities often target older adults. Whether you’re in this age bracket or worry about senior parents and other relatives, here are seven ways to prevent elder financial abuse: 1.     Keep both paper and online … Continue reading 7 ways to prevent elder financial abuse

Tax calendar

January 15 — Individual taxpayers’ final 2018 estimated tax payment is due. January 31 — File 2018 Forms W-2 (“Wage and Tax Statement”) with the Social Security Administration and provide copies to your employees. ·      File 2018 Forms 1099-MISC (“Miscellaneous Income”) reporting nonemployee compensation payments in box 7 with the IRS and provide copies to recipients. ·      Most employers … Continue reading Tax calendar

December 20, 2018

An intrafamily loan is worth careful consideration

Lending money — rather than giving it — to loved ones is an idea worth considering. Perhaps you’re not ready to part with your wealth. For example, maybe you’re concerned about having enough money to fund your retirement or you feel that your children aren’t ready to handle the responsibility. Intrafamily loans allow you to … Continue reading An intrafamily loan is worth careful consideration

Use capital losses to offset capital gains

When is a loss actually a gain? When that loss becomes an opportunity to lower tax liability, of course. Now’s a good time to begin your year-end tax planning and attempt to neutralize gains and losses by year end. To do so, it might make sense to sell investments at a loss in 2018 to … Continue reading Use capital losses to offset capital gains

Is a PTO contribution arrangement right for your business?

Many businesses find themselves short-staffed from Thanksgiving through December 31 as workers scramble to use, rather than lose, their remaining time off. Indeed, your workplace may resemble a ghost town if you limit how many vacation days employees can roll over to the new year. A paid time off (PTO) contribution arrangement may be the … Continue reading Is a PTO contribution arrangement right for your business?

December 19, 2018

Accelerating your property tax deduction to reduce your tax bill

Smart timing of deductible expenses can reduce your tax liability, and poor timing can increase it unnecessarily. One deductible expense you may be able to control to your advantage is your property tax payment. You can prepay (by December 31) property taxes that relate to 2018 (the taxes must be assessed in 2018) but that … Continue reading Accelerating your property tax deduction to reduce your tax bill

November 20, 2018

Taxable vs. tax-advantaged: Where to hold investments

When investing for retirement or other long-term goals, people usually prefer tax-advantaged accounts, such as IRAs, 401(k)s or 403(b)s. Certain assets are well suited to these accounts, but it may make more sense to hold other investments in traditional taxable accounts. Know the rules Some investments, such as fast-growing stocks, can generate substantial capital gains, … Continue reading Taxable vs. tax-advantaged: Where to hold investments

Is now the time for some life insurance?

Is now the time for some life insurance? Many people reach a point in life when buying some life insurance is highly advisable. Once you determine that you need it, the next step is calculating how much you should get and what kind. Careful calculations If the coverage is to replace income and support your … Continue reading Is now the time for some life insurance?

Getting caught up with the latest catch-up contributions

Getting caught up with the latest catch-up contributions One could say that there are only two key milestones in retirement planning: the day you begin participating in a retirement savings account and the day you begin drawing money from it. But, of course, there are others as well. One is the day you turn 50 … Continue reading Getting caught up with the latest catch-up contributions

Year-end tax strategies for accrual-basis businesses

The last month or so of the year offers accrual-basis taxpayers an opportunity to make some timely moves that might enable them to save money on their 2018 tax bills. The key to saving tax as an accrual-basis taxpayer is to properly record and recognize expenses that were incurred this year but won’t be paid … Continue reading Year-end tax strategies for accrual-basis businesses

October 11, 2018

Are you a member of the Sandwich Generation?

If you’re currently taking care of your children and elderly parents, count yourself among those in the “Sandwich Generation.” Although it may be personally gratifying to help your parents, it can be a financial burden and affect your own estate plan. Here are some critical steps to take to better manage the situation. Identify key … Continue reading Are you a member of the Sandwich Generation?

Avoid penalties by abiding by the NQDC tax rules

Nonqualified deferred compensation (NQDC) plans pay executives at some time in the future for services to be currently performed. If you participate in such a plan, or your business offers one as an employee benefit, it’s critical for everyone involved to abide by the applicable tax rules. Of course, in the hectic course of the … Continue reading Avoid penalties by abiding by the NQDC tax rules

DOL has increased scrutiny of defined benefit plans

Sponsors of defined benefit plans — commonly known as pensions — might be facing tighter scrutiny from the U.S. Department of Labor. Just last year, at an ERISA Advisory Council meeting, the agency’s Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) announced that it had ramped up pension audit operations in its Philadelphia office and later decided to … Continue reading DOL has increased scrutiny of defined benefit plans

Catching up with the home mortgage interest deduction

A home is the most valuable asset many people own. So, it’s important to remain aware of the tax impact of homeownership and to carefully track the debt you incur to buy, build or improve your home — known as “acquisition indebtedness.” Among the biggest tax perks of buying a home is the ability to … Continue reading Catching up with the home mortgage interest deduction

Tax calendar

October 15 — Personal federal income tax returns that received an automatic six-month extension must be filed today and any tax, interest and penalties due must be paid. The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) Report 114, “Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts” (FBAR), must be filed by today, if not filed already, for offshore bank … Continue reading Tax calendar

September 11, 2018

TCJA draws a silver lining around the individual AMT

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) didn’t eliminate the individual alternative minimum tax (AMT). But the law did draw a silver lining around it. Revised rules now lessen the likelihood that many taxpayers will owe substantial taxes under the AMT for 2018 through 2025. Parallel universe Think of the AMT as a parallel universe … Continue reading TCJA draws a silver lining around the individual AMT

How spouse-owned businesses can reduce self-employment taxes

If you own a profitable, unincorporated business with your spouse, you probably find the high self-employment (SE) tax bills burdensome. An unincorporated business in which both spouses are active is typically treated by the IRS as a partnership owned 50/50 by the spouses. (For simplicity, when we refer to “partnerships,” we’ll include in our definition … Continue reading How spouse-owned businesses can reduce self-employment taxes

Study up on the tax advantages of a 529 savings plan

With kids back in school, it’s a good time for parents (and grandparents) to think about college funding. One option, which can be especially beneficial if the children in question still have many years until heading off to college, is a Section 529 plan. Tax-deferred compounding 529 plans are generally state-sponsored, and the savings-plan option … Continue reading Study up on the tax advantages of a 529 savings plan

When is bartering taxable?

The notion of bartering may conjure an image of a crowded, bustling medieval bazaar. Dusty travelers, farmers perchance, haggle with merchants over textiles or metal tools. Live chickens are exchanged for handspun cloth and, eventually, everyone goes home happy. Although usually less dusty, these types of transactions continue to occur in today’s high-tech modern world. … Continue reading When is bartering taxable?

August 7, 2018

Take note of the distinctive features of Roth IRAs

For some people, Roth IRAs can offer income and estate tax benefits that are preferable to those offered by traditional IRAs. However, it’s important to take note of just what the distinctive features of a Roth IRA are before making the choice. Traditional vs. Roth The biggest difference between traditional and Roth IRAs is how … Continue reading Take note of the distinctive features of Roth IRAs

Assessing your exposure to the estate tax and gift tax

When Congress was debating tax law reform last year, there was talk of repealing the federal estate and gift taxes. As it turned out, rumors of their demise were highly exaggerated. Both still exist and every taxpayer with a high degree of wealth shouldn’t let either take their heirs by surprise. Exclusions and exemptions For … Continue reading Assessing your exposure to the estate tax and gift tax

LLC and LLP owners should befriend the PAL rules

The limited liability company (LLC) and limited liability partnership (LLP) business structures have their advantages. But, in years past, the IRS treated LLC and LLP owners as limited partners for purposes of the passive activity loss (PAL) rules. This could be a tax negative. Fortunately, LLC and LLP owners can now be treated as general partners, which means they … Continue reading LLC and LLP owners should befriend the PAL rules

Is your company overpaying on sales and use taxes?

It’s a safe bet that state tax authorities will let you know if your business hasn’t paid enough sales and use taxes. But the lines of communication may not be so open if you’re overpaying. For this reason, many businesses use reverse audits to find overpayments so they can seek reimbursements. In most states, businesses … Continue reading Is your company overpaying on sales and use taxes?

July 7, 2018

Don’t let the kiddie tax play costly games with you

It’s not uncommon for parents, grandparents and others to make financial gifts to minors and young adults. Perhaps you want to transfer some appreciated stock to a child or grandchild to start them on their journey toward successful wealth management. Or maybe you simply want to remove some assets from your taxable estate or shift … Continue reading Don’t let the kiddie tax play costly games with you

4 questions to ask before hiring household help

When you hire someone to work in your home, you may become an employer. Thus, you may have specific tax obligations, such as withholding and paying Social Security and Medicare (FICA) taxes and possibly federal and state unemployment insurance. Here are four questions to ask before you say, “You’re hired.” Who’s considered a household employee? … Continue reading 4 questions to ask before hiring household help

ESOPs offer businesses tax and other benefits

Wouldn’t it be great if your employees worked as if they owned the company? An employee stock ownership plan (ESOP) could make that a reality. Under an ESOP, employee participants take part ownership of the business through a retirement savings arrangement. Meanwhile, the business and its existing owner(s) can benefit from some tax breaks, an … Continue reading ESOPs offer businesses tax and other benefits

Retirement plan options for business owners

As a business owner, you may have most of your money tied up in your company — making saving for retirement especially challenging. If you haven’t already set up a tax-advantaged retirement plan, think about setting one up this year. Keep in mind that, if you have employees, they generally must be allowed to participate in the … Continue reading Retirement plan options for business owners

Tax calendar

July 16 — If the monthly deposit rule applies, employers must deposit the tax for payments in June for Social Security, Medicare, withheld income tax, and nonpayroll withholding. July 31 — If you have employees, a federal unemployment tax (FUTA) deposit is due if the FUTA liability through June exceeds $500. The second quarter Form 941 (“Employer’s … Continue reading Tax calendar

June 22, 2018

How to be tax-smart when it comes to mutual funds

Mutual funds are so common these days that many people overlook the tax considerations involved. Here are some tips on how to be tax-smart with these investment vehicles. Avoid year-end investments Typically, mutual funds distribute accumulated dividends and capital gains toward the end of the year. It’s generally wise to avoid investing in a fund … Continue reading How to be tax-smart when it comes to mutual funds

Deducting home equity interest under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act

Passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) in December 2017 has led to confusion over some longstanding deductions. In response, the IRS recently issued a statement clarifying that the interest on home equity loans, home equity lines of credit and second mortgages will, in many cases, remain deductible. How it used to be … Continue reading Deducting home equity interest under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act

3 common types of IRS tax penalties

Around this time of year, many people have filed and forgotten about their 2017 tax returns. But you could get an abrupt reminder in the form of an IRS penalty. Here are three common types and how you might seek relief: Failure-to-file and failure-to-pay. The IRS will consider any reason that establishes that you were unable … Continue reading 3 common types of IRS tax penalties

Beware of tax traps when making an employee a partner

In today’s competitive employment market, offering an employee an equity interest in your business can be a powerful tool for attracting and retaining top talent. If your company is organized as a partnership, however, beware of the tax traps of doing so. Employees pay half of the Social Security and Medicare taxes on their wages, … Continue reading Beware of tax traps when making an employee a partner

May 23, 2018

Do you have your own wealth management plan?

Fingerprints: There are no two alike. So it should be with your wealth management plan. Taking a boilerplate approach could prevent you from achieving your specific goals. Here are some key points to consider when devising a plan that’s all your own. Many variables For your plan to be as unique as you, it should reflect variables … Continue reading Do you have your own wealth management plan?

Choosing between a calendar tax year and a fiscal tax year

Many business owners use a calendar year as their company’s tax year. It’s intuitive and aligns with most owners’ personal returns, making it about as simple as anything involving taxes can be. But for some businesses, choosing a fiscal tax year can make more sense. What’s a fiscal tax year? A fiscal tax year consists … Continue reading Choosing between a calendar tax year and a fiscal tax year

Get an early tax “refund” by adjusting your withholding

Each year, millions of taxpayers claim an income tax refund. To be sure, receiving a payment from the IRS for a few thousand dollars can be a pleasant influx of cash. But it means you were essentially giving the government an interest-free loan for close to a year, which isn’t the best use of your … Continue reading Get an early tax “refund” by adjusting your withholding

Foreign accounts call for specific reporting requirements

In an increasingly globalized society, many people choose to open offshore accounts to deposit a portion of their wealth. When doing so, it’s important to follow the IRS’s strict foreign accounts reporting requirements. In a nutshell, if you have a financial interest in or signature authority over any foreign accounts, including bank accounts, brokerage accounts, … Continue reading Foreign accounts call for specific reporting requirements

No kidding: Child credit to get even more valuable

The child credit has long been a valuable tax break. But, with the passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) late last year, it’s now even better — at least for a while. Here are some details that every family should know. Amount and limitations For the 2017 tax year, the child credit … Continue reading No kidding: Child credit to get even more valuable

April 23, 2018

Getting to know your credit and debit cards a bit better

Virtually everyone has a credit and debit card these days. But many of us still live in fear of these plastic necessities because we’re not terribly familiar with the fine print of the arrangements under which they operate. Let’s get to know them a bit better. Credit cards If your credit card is used without … Continue reading Getting to know your credit and debit cards a bit better

What is “reasonable compensation,” anyway?

The issue of reasonable owners’ compensation often comes up in federal tax inquiries. But it may also be an issue in shareholder disputes and divorce cases. For instance, minority shareholders or spouses of controlling shareholders may claim that an owner is taking an excessive salary, thereby impairing the value of the business. Alternatively, a nonowner-spouse … Continue reading What is “reasonable compensation,” anyway?

The new deal on employee meals (and entertainment)

Years and years ago, the notion of having a company cafeteria or regularly catered meals was generally feasible for only the biggest of businesses. But, more recently, employers providing meals to employees has become somewhat common for many midsize to large companies. A recent tax law change, however, may curtail the practice. As you’re likely … Continue reading The new deal on employee meals (and entertainment)

Tax calendar

Tax calendar April 17 — Besides being the last day to file (or extend) your 2017 personal return and pay any tax that is due, 2018 first quarter estimated tax payments for individuals, trusts and calendar-year corporations are due today. Also due are 2017 returns for trusts, calendar-year estates and C corporations, FinCEN Form 114 (Report … Continue reading Tax calendar

March 1, 2018

Dynasty trusts are more valuable than ever

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA), signed into law this past December, affects more than just income taxes. It’s brought great changes to estate planning and, in doing so, bolstered the potential value of dynasty trusts. Exemption changes Let’s start with the TCJA. It doesn’t repeal the estate tax, as had been discussed before … Continue reading Dynasty trusts are more valuable than ever

Heed the warning signs of W-2 phishing scams

A growing number of businesses have been victimized by W-2 phishing scams. In a traditional phishing scam, a criminal tricks someone into providing confidential information and then uses it to steal money and/or the victim’s identity. The W-2 phishing scam is a variation on this. Whether you’re a business owner, work in management or are simply an … Continue reading Heed the warning signs of W-2 phishing scams

Business owners: Brush up on bonus depreciation

Every company needs to upgrade its assets once in a while, whether desks and chairs or a huge piece of complex machinery. But before you go shopping this year, be sure to brush up on the enhanced bonus depreciation tax breaks created under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) passed late last year. Old … Continue reading Business owners: Brush up on bonus depreciation

The changing face of personal exemptions and the standard deduction

Personal tax exemptions and the standard deduction have looked largely the same for quite some time. But, in light of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) passed late last year, many individual taxpayers may find themselves confused by the changing face of these tax-planning elements. Here are some clarifications. For 2017, taxpayers can claim … Continue reading The changing face of personal exemptions and the standard deduction

January 30, 2018

Take a look at the domestic production activities deduction

The domestic production activities deduction (DPAD) provides a tax break for certain “domestic production activities.” Unfortunately, many businesses tend to overlook this valuable tax break because they believe it’s applicable only to certain industries. In fact, the deduction remains available to a wide range of businesses for the 2017 tax year. Significant benefits Calculating the … Continue reading Take a look at the domestic production activities deduction

Making 2017 retirement plan contributions in 2018

The clock is ticking down to the tax filing deadline. The good news is that you still may be able to save on your impending 2017 tax bill by making contributions to certain retirement plans. For example, if you qualify, you can make a deductible contribution to a traditional IRA right up until the April … Continue reading Making 2017 retirement plan contributions in 2018

Do you know the tax impact of your collectibles?

They say one person’s trash is another person’s treasure. This may hold true when it comes to collectibles — those various objets d’art for which many people will pay good money. But if you’re considering selling or donating some of your precious items, be sure to consider the tax impact on your 2017 return. Sales The IRS … Continue reading Do you know the tax impact of your collectibles?

When an elderly parent might qualify as your dependent

It’s not uncommon for adult children to help support their aging parents. If you’re in this position, you might qualify for an adult-dependent exemption to deduct up to $4,050 for each person claimed on your 2017 return. Basic qualifications For you to qualify for the adult-dependent exemption, in most cases your parent must have less … Continue reading When an elderly parent might qualify as your dependent

December 28, 2017

Still important: The tax impact of business travel

With conference calls and Web meetings increasingly prevalent, business travel isn’t what it used to be. But if your company is still sending employees out on the road, it remains important to understand the tax ramifications. Fringe benefits Generally, for federal tax purposes, a company may deduct all ordinary and necessary expenses paid or incurred … Continue reading Still important: The tax impact of business travel

Help prevent tax identity theft by filing early

If you’re like many Americans, you might not start thinking about filing your tax return until close to this year’s April 17 deadline. You might even want to file for an extension so you don’t have to send your return to the IRS until October 15. But there’s another date you should keep in mind: … Continue reading Help prevent tax identity theft by filing early

Owner-employees need to stay up to speed on employment taxes

Keeping up with the complexity of the Internal Revenue Code is challenging for an individual and even more so for a business owner. But, if you’re someone who handles both roles — an owner-employee — the difficulty level is particularly high. Nonetheless, it’s important to stay up to speed on your specific obligations. As you’re … Continue reading Owner-employees need to stay up to speed on employment taxes

4 financial planning tips for second marriages

Every year, a substantial percentage of weddings aren’t first-time nuptials but second (or subsequent) marriages. Here are four tips to help such partners better manage the situation: Take inventory. Identify the assets and liabilities each person brings to the union. If one spouse has significant debt, how will the couple manage it? Or if one spouse … Continue reading 4 financial planning tips for second marriages

Tax calendar

January 16 — Individual taxpayers’ final 2016 estimated tax payment is due. January 31 — File 2017 Forms W-2 (“Wage and Tax Statement”) with the Social Security Administration and provide copies to your employees. File 2017 Forms 1099-MISC (“Miscellaneous Income”) reporting nonemployee compensation payments in box 7 with the IRS and provide copies to recipients. Most employers … Continue reading Tax calendar

November 28, 2017

Educate employees on required minimum distribution rules

The deadline for taking 2017 required minimum distributions (RMDs) is rapidly approaching: December 31, 2017. If you own a business and offer a 401(k) plan, it’s a good time to think about how you can make sure your older employees are aware of the RMD obligations, including how the rules differ for IRAs vs. 401(k) plans. IRAs … Continue reading Educate employees on required minimum distribution rules

DAPTs offer a homegrown approach to asset protection

Your assets face many potential threats to their value, such as market volatility and inflation. Another threat, especially if you’re at high risk for lawsuits, is creditors. The most effective way to protect assets from such a threat may be to transfer them to children or other family members, either outright or in trust, with … Continue reading DAPTs offer a homegrown approach to asset protection

5 common mistakes when applying for financial aid

Given the astronomical cost of college, even well-off parents should consider applying for financial aid. A single misstep, however, can harm your child’s eligibility. Here are five common mistakes to avoid: Presuming you don’t qualify. It’s difficult to predict whether you’ll qualify for aid, so apply even if you think your net worth is too high. Keep in … Continue reading 5 common mistakes when applying for financial aid

Ensuring your year-end donations are tax deductible

Many people make donations at the end of the year. To be deductible on your 2017 return, a charitable donation must be made by December 31, 2017. According to the IRS, a donation generally is “made” at the time of its “unconditional delivery.” But what does this mean? Is it the date you write a … Continue reading Ensuring your year-end donations are tax deductible

October 24, 2017

Handle with care: Mutual funds and taxes

Many people overlook taxes when planning their mutual fund investments. But you’ve got to handle these valuable assets with care. Here are some tips to consider. Avoid year-end investments Typically, mutual funds distribute accumulated dividends and capital gains toward the end of the year. But don’t fall for the common misconception that investing in a … Continue reading Handle with care: Mutual funds and taxes

Bad debts aren’t always bad news

The IRS defines a business bad debt as “a loss from the worthlessness of a debt that was either created or acquired in a trade or business or closely related to your trade or business when it became partly to totally worthless.” Although no business owner goes out of his or her way to acquire … Continue reading Bad debts aren’t always bad news

Pondering the purchase of a life insurance policy

What, if any, role life insurance should play in your financial plan depends on a variety of factors. These include whether you’re single or married, if you have minor children or other dependents, and your net worth and estate planning goals. There’s also the tax impact to consider. Let’s look a little more closely at … Continue reading Pondering the purchase of a life insurance policy

Are frequent flyer miles ever taxable?

If you recently redeemed frequent flyer miles to treat the family to a fun summer vacation or to take your spouse on a romantic getaway, you might assume that there are no tax implications involved. And you’re probably right — but there is a chance your miles could be taxable. Generally, miles awarded by airlines … Continue reading Are frequent flyer miles ever taxable?

September 25, 2017

How to steer clear of tax issues related to shareholder loans

Owners occasionally need to borrow funds from their businesses. If your business is structured as a corporation and it has extra cash on hand, a shareholder loan can be a convenient and low-cost option — but it’s important to treat the transaction as a bona fide loan. If you don’t, the IRS may claim you … Continue reading How to steer clear of tax issues related to shareholder loans

Wills and living trusts: Estate planning imperatives

Well-crafted, up-to-date estate planning documents are an imperative for everyone. They also can help ease the burdens on your family during a difficult time. Two important examples: wills and living trusts. The will A will is a legal document that arranges for the distribution of your property after you die and allows you to designate … Continue reading Wills and living trusts: Estate planning imperatives

Should you change your business — or transform it?

As its market and technological needs evolve, every company needs to change. There’s even a formal term for the undertaking: “change management.” From an operational standpoint, change involves opening up the hood and switching out old engine parts for new ones. Even if it affects the business as a whole, change means focusing on specific … Continue reading Should you change your business — or transform it?

3 strategies for handling estimated tax payments

In today’s economy, many individuals are self-employed. Others generate income from interest, rent or dividends. If these circumstances sound familiar, you might be at risk of penalties if you don’t pay enough tax during the year through estimated tax payments and withholding. Here are three strategies to help avoid underpayment penalties: Know the minimum payment … Continue reading 3 strategies for handling estimated tax payments

Tax calendar

October 16 — Personal returns that received an automatic six-month extension must be filed today and any tax, interest and penalties due must be paid. The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) Form 114, “Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts (FBAR),” must be filed by today, if it hasn’t been filed already, for offshore bank account … Continue reading Tax calendar

September 7, 2017

Do you need the protection of a D&O insurance policy?

Your efforts toward ensuring your financial security might be focused on building up your assets through wise investing or growing your business. But protecting the assets you already have is just as important. And if you serve as a director or officer of a company, or even sit on the board of a nonprofit, your … Continue reading Do you need the protection of a D&O insurance policy?

Beware the ongoing risk of employee misclassification

We live in an increasingly specialized society. As such, there’s a growing subset of the workforce with distinctive skill sets that can perform high-quality services. Through independent contractor relationships, companies are able to access these services without the long-term entanglements of traditional employment. And yet, risk remains. Classifying a worker as an independent contractor frees … Continue reading Beware the ongoing risk of employee misclassification

Understanding the differences between health care accounts

Health care costs continue to be in the news and on everyone’s mind. As a result, tax-friendly ways to pay for these expenses are very much in play for many people. The three primary players, so to speak, are Health Savings Accounts (HSAs), Flexible Spending Arrangements (FSAs) and Health Reimbursement Arrangements (HRAs). All provide opportunities … Continue reading Understanding the differences between health care accounts

5 keys to disaster planning for individuals

Disaster planning is usually associated with businesses. But individuals need to prepare for worst-case scenarios, as well. Unfortunately, the topic can seem a little overwhelming. To help simplify matters, here are five keys to disaster planning that everyone should consider: Insurance. Start with your homeowners’ coverage. Make sure your policy covers flood, wind and other damage possible … Continue reading 5 keys to disaster planning for individuals

August 4, 2017

Should you convert from a C corporation to an S corporation?

Many private business owners elect to incorporate, turning their companies into C corporations. But, at some point, you may consider converting to an S corporation. This isn’t necessarily a bad idea, but it’s important to know the ramifications involved. Similarities and differences S and C corporations use many of the same recordkeeping practices. Both types … Continue reading Should you convert from a C corporation to an S corporation?

Cool down with a dip into your tax records

In many parts of the country, the dog days of summer are a good time to stay inside. If you’re looking for a practical activity while you beat the heat, consider organizing your tax records. Granted, it may not be as exhilarating as jumping off the high dive, but a dip into these important documents … Continue reading Cool down with a dip into your tax records

IRS permits high-earner Roth IRA rollover opportunity

Are you a highly compensated employee (HCE) approaching retirement? If so, and you have a 401(k), you should consider a potentially useful tax-efficient IRA rollover technique. The IRS has specific rules about how participants such as you can allocate accumulated 401(k) plan assets based on pretax and after-tax employee contributions between standard IRAs and Roth … Continue reading IRS permits high-earner Roth IRA rollover opportunity

Shifting capital gains to your children

If you’re an investor looking to save tax dollars, your kids might be able to help you out. Giving appreciated stock or other investments to your children can minimize the impact of capital gains taxes. For this strategy to work best, however, your child must not be subject to the “kiddie tax.” This tax applies … Continue reading Shifting capital gains to your children

July 4, 2017

Why you should (or shouldn’t) pursue an acquisition

Like so many aspects of the national and global economies, merger and acquisition (M&A) activity tends to wax and wane. Nonetheless, billions of dollars continue to change hands annually, and an acquisition can be a great way to grow a business. So if one of these deals comes your way, it’s important to carefully consider … Continue reading Why you should (or shouldn’t) pursue an acquisition

Leasing property to your business might trigger undesirable tax consequences

If you own property and a business, there’s an obvious temptation to lease that property to the business. Such an arrangement can make sense from many perspectives. You’re no doubt familiar with the property and its advantages to your company; the deal could be carried out quickly; and the money changing hands would stay between … Continue reading Leasing property to your business might trigger undesirable tax consequences

Which type of mortgage loan meets your needs?

Few purchases during your lifetime will be as expensive as buying a home. Whether it’s your primary residence, a vacation home or an investment property, how you choose to pay for it can have a significant impact on your financial situation over time. If you’re considering a mortgage loan, understanding the main categories of mortgages … Continue reading Which type of mortgage loan meets your needs?

Know your tax hand when it comes to gambling

A royal flush can be quite a rush. But the IRS casts a wide net when defining gambling income. It includes winnings from casinos, horse races, lotteries and raffles, as well as any cash or prizes (appraised at fair market value) from contests. If you participate in any of these activities, you must report such … Continue reading Know your tax hand when it comes to gambling

Tax calendar – Third Quarter

July 17 — If the monthly deposit rule applies, employers must deposit the tax for payments in June for Social Security, Medicare, withheld income tax and nonpayroll withholding. July 31 — If you have employees, a federal unemployment tax (FUTA) deposit is due if the FUTA liability through June exceeds $500. The second quarter Form 941 (“Employer’s … Continue reading Tax calendar – Third Quarter

June 4, 2017

In down years, NOL rules can offer tax relief

From time to time, a business may find that its operating expenses and other deductions for a particular year exceed its income. This is known as incurring a net operating loss (NOL). In such cases, companies (or their owners) may be able to snatch some tax relief from this revenue defeat. Under the Internal Revenue … Continue reading In down years, NOL rules can offer tax relief

Asking the right questions about long-term care insurance

Like most people, as you age into your 40s and 50s, you may wonder what the future holds for your health and well-being. Will you be as sharp mentally and robust physically as you are right now? Could a serious medical condition arise in your future that might prevent you from performing routine daily tasks? Unfortunately, … Continue reading Asking the right questions about long-term care insurance

Renting out your vacation home? Anticipate the tax impact

When buying a vacation home, the primary objective is usually to provide a place for many years of happy memories. But you might also view the property as an income-producing investment and choose to rent it out when you’re not using it. Let’s take a look at how the IRS generally treats income and expenses … Continue reading Renting out your vacation home? Anticipate the tax impact

Thoughts and musings on family budgeting

Simplicity is the key to a successful family budget. But every budget needs to cover all necessary items. To find the right balance, your budget should address two distinct facets of your family members’ lives: the near term and the long term. In the near term, your budget should encompass the primary, day-to-day items that … Continue reading Thoughts and musings on family budgeting

May 26, 2017

Reviewing the innocent spouse relief rules

Married couples don’t always agree — and taxes are no exception. In certain cases, an “innocent” spouse can apply for relief from the responsibility of paying tax, interest and penalties arising from a spouse’s (or former spouse’s) improperly handled tax return. Although it isn’t easy to qualify, potentially affected taxpayers should review the rules. Applicants … Continue reading Reviewing the innocent spouse relief rules

Watch out for IRD issues when inheriting money

Once a relatively obscure concept, income in respect of a decedent (IRD) can create a surprisingly high tax bill for those who inherit certain types of property, such as IRAs or other retirement plans. Fortunately, there are ways to minimize or even eliminate the IRD tax bite. How it works Most inherited property is free … Continue reading Watch out for IRD issues when inheriting money

Viatical settlements: A funding mechanism for medical costs

Someone who’s terminally or chronically ill may lack the funds to cover significant medical costs. Although insurance policies have historically been held for the death benefits, it may be possible to sell a policy to a viatical settlement provider. This way, the individual can secure much-needed and generally tax-free cash while still alive. Buyers and … Continue reading Viatical settlements: A funding mechanism for medical costs

Could a cost segregation study save your company taxes?

If your business has acquired, constructed or substantially improved a building recently, consider a cost segregation study. One of these studies can enable you to identify building costs that are properly allocable to tangible personal property rather than real property. And this may allow you to accelerate depreciation deductions, reducing taxes and boosting cash flow. … Continue reading Could a cost segregation study save your company taxes?

April 29, 2017

5 growth strategies for today’s businesses

It’s probably safe to say that nearly every business owner wants his or her company to grow. The question is: How? As you ponder your company’s ideal strategic direction, here are five common business growth strategies to consider: Creating and delivering new products and services. This is probably the most obvious growth strategy, but that … Continue reading 5 growth strategies for today’s businesses

April 26, 2017

Tax calendar

April 18 — Besides being the last day to file (or extend) your 2016 personal return and pay any taxes due, 2017 first quarter estimated tax payments for individuals, trusts and calendar-year corporations are due today. So are 2016 returns for trusts and calendar-year estates and C corporations, plus any final contribution you plan to … Continue reading Tax calendar

So you just filed your taxes — could an audit be next?

Like many people, you probably feel a great sense of relief wash over you after your tax return is completed and filed. Unfortunately, even professionally prepared and accurate returns may sometimes be subject to an IRS audit. The good news? Chances are slim that it will actually happen. Only a small percentage of returns go … Continue reading So you just filed your taxes — could an audit be next?

ABLE accounts can help support the disabled

The Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act of 2014 created a tax-advantaged savings account for people who have a qualifying disability (or are blind) before age 26. Modeled after the well-known Section 529 college savings plan, ABLE accounts offer many benefits. But it’s important to understand their limitations. Tax and funding benefits Like Sec. … Continue reading ABLE accounts can help support the disabled

Reviewing your company’s buy-sell agreement

If you own a business and follow professional advice, you’ve likely established a buy-sell agreement in case you or a co-owner voluntarily or involuntarily leaves the company. Assuming this is true, remember that it’s not enough to draft an agreement and put it in a safe place. You need to review and perhaps revise the … Continue reading Reviewing your company’s buy-sell agreement

March 26, 2017

You’ve hit the jackpot! Now what?

When it comes to financial planning, most of us spend our time guarding against things that could go wrong. But what if something really good happens? Hitting the jackpot is obviously a nice problem to have. Yet an unexpected influx of cash can drive even savvy individuals to do regrettable things. Your first impulse upon … Continue reading You’ve hit the jackpot! Now what?

Identifying qualifying children for tax purposes

As you file your 2016 income tax return, you may be wondering whether you’re eligible for tax breaks related to a niece who lives with you, or perhaps a stepson who spends only part of the year in your home. It all depends on whether, for federal tax purposes, that person is your “qualifying child.” … Continue reading Identifying qualifying children for tax purposes

4 tips for donating artwork to charity

Individuals may want to donate artwork so it can be enjoyed by a wider audience or available for scholarly study or simply to make room for new artwork in their home. Here are four tips for donating artwork with an eye toward tax savings: Get an appraisal. Donations of artwork valued at over $5,000 require … Continue reading 4 tips for donating artwork to charity

Got nexus? Find out before operating in multiple states

For many years, business owners had to ask themselves one question when it came to facing taxation in another state: Do we have “nexus”? This term indicates a business presence in a given state that’s substantial enough to trigger the state’s tax rules and obligations. Well, the question still stands. And if you’re considering operating … Continue reading Got nexus? Find out before operating in multiple states

March 6, 2017

Welcome to our new website

We at SKMB are excited to welcome you to our new website, more information will be added in the coming months. Please check back for our monthly blogs and updates.

February 26, 2017

Phaseouts and reductions: A tax-filing reminder

As tax-filing season gets into full swing, there are many details to remember. One subject to keep in mind — especially if you’ve seen your income rise recently — is whether you’ll be able to reap the full value of tax breaks that you’ve claimed previously. What could change? If your adjusted gross income (AGI) … Continue reading Phaseouts and reductions: A tax-filing reminder

4 myths about managing your debt

Debt is a reality for many Americans. Median household debt was estimated at $2,300 as of May 2016, according to consumer information provider ValuePenguin. And debt isn’t limited to those earning lower incomes; households with a net worth of $500,000 and over had an estimated $8,139 in credit card debt, per the same source. Underestimating … Continue reading 4 myths about managing your debt

February 22, 2017

Facing the tax challenges of self-employment

Today’s technology makes self-employment easier than ever. But if you work for yourself, you’ll face some distinctive challenges when it comes to your taxes. Here are some important steps to take: Learn your liability. Self-employed individuals are liable for self-employment tax, which means they must pay both the employee and employer portions of FICA taxes. … Continue reading Facing the tax challenges of self-employment

February 21, 2017

Consider separating real estate assets from your business

Many companies choose not to combine real estate and other assets into a single entity. Perhaps the business fears liability for injuries suffered on the property. Or legal liabilities encountered by the company could affect property ownership. But there are valid and potentially beneficial tax reasons for holding real estate in a separate entity as … Continue reading Consider separating real estate assets from your business

January 26, 2017

Tax calendar

January 17 Individual taxpayers’ final 2016 estimated tax payment is due. January 31 File 2016 Forms W-2 (“Wage and Tax Statement”) with the SSA and provide copies to your employees. File 2016 Forms 1099-MISC (“Miscellaneous Income”) reporting nonemployee compensation payments in box 7 with the IRS and provide copies to recipients. Most employers must file … Continue reading Tax calendar

Reviewing your company’s inventory options for best results

Robust cash flow is a must for virtually every kind of business. Yet an improperly or inadequately managed inventory system can drag down your revenues. It’s a good idea to regularly review your approach to inventory accounting. Reconsider your approach Generally, there are two primary inventory accounting methods for both tax accounting and financial accounting. … Continue reading Reviewing your company’s inventory options for best results

Need to sell real property? Try an installment sale

If your company owns real property, or you do so individually, you may not always be able to dispose of it as quickly as you’d like. One avenue for perhaps finding a buyer a little sooner is an installment sale. Benefits and risks An installment sale occurs when you transfer property in exchange for a … Continue reading Need to sell real property? Try an installment sale

Slight adjustments: COLA amounts for 2017 retirement plans

The IRS recently issued cost-of-living adjustments (or “COLAs”) for 2017. If, like most people, you’re funding a retirement plan, it’s a good idea to take a look at what’s changed and what hasn’t. Elective deferrals to 401(k), 403(b), 457(b)(2) and 457(c)(1) plans will remain the same at $18,000. Likewise, contributions to SIMPLEs stay unchanged at … Continue reading Slight adjustments: COLA amounts for 2017 retirement plans

DAFs bring an investment angle to charitable giving

If you’re planning to make significant charitable donations in the coming year, consider a donor-advised fund (DAF). These accounts allow you to take a charitable income tax deduction immediately, while deferring decisions about how much to give — and to whom — until the time is right. Account attributes A DAF is a tax-advantaged investment … Continue reading DAFs bring an investment angle to charitable giving