Articles & newsletters

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