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Have you ever read a newsletter or newspaper article only to find several weeks or months later that you wished you had cut it out and saved it?  Well, it happens to everyone else, including us, as well.

That is why we archive all of the articles in our newsletter.  While an article on Roth IRAs may not be useful to you now, it can take on added significance when an unexpected bonus or raise occurs in the future.

 

Fall 2003

Life Insurance In Your Estate - If you're like most people, the proceeds collected from your life insurance will make up a large portion of your estate and, if you're not careful, the proceeds can end up being taxed twice when your spouse passes on. 

Record Retention - Ever wondered how long you should keep copies of those old bank statements.  If you're like many of our clients, you probably keep them longer than you're actually required to.  Prolonged record retention is a costly practice. 

Officer Compensation - A recent Tax Court case outlined a situation we as CPAs see quite often with our clients.   In this case, the taxpayer was the sole shareholder of a professional association (taxed as a corporation) which performed medical services.  



Summer 2003

Renting Out Your Second Home - If you have a second home or vacation home that you would like to rent out for part of the year, it can actually be an excellent way to earn additional income and get a nice tax break at the same time. 

Estate Planning - As CPAs, we obviously become privy to a great deal of our clients' financial information and if we had to select areas where most of them have a great deal of financial vulnerability, the potential taxes on their estate would rank near the top of the list.

Placing Your Spouse On The Payroll - If you own a small business and have a spouse who does not have full-time employment elsewhere, you may want to consider placing him or her on your company payroll.

2003 Tax Act - On Wednesday, May 28th, 2003, President Bush signed the Jobs and Growth Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2003 which should bring at least some tax breaks to almost all of our clients.  As everyone anticipated, the primary beneficiaries of the Act are families with children, stock investors, high income taxpayers and small business. 



Spring 2003

Employee Stock Options - For several years now, we have all been reading about the two most prized words in Silicon Valley:  stock options.  When a labor market gets as tight as it was in the internet industry back during the 1990's, many companies will begin offering stock options to attract and retain top employees.

The Home Office Pitfall - When the IRS relaxed the rules on home office deductions, many CPAs across the country were inundated with phone calls from clients anxious to "cash in" on their new tax break.  However, after careful consideration, many of them decided that the "downside" of taking the deduction outweighed the benefit.

Retirement "Catch-Up" Contributions - If you're fast approaching retirement age and becoming concerned about the amount of retirement funds you have set aside, the 2001 Tax Relief Act held some good news for you.  If you are over age 50, you are now allowed to make "catch-up" contributions to your defined contribution retirement accounts.


Winter, 2002-2003

A Financial Audit - Most people think of an audit in terms of their tax filings with the IRS.  However, if you are a business owner who has borrowed significant sums from a bank or other lending institution or you have outside investors, you may well be aware of another type of audit - a financial audit performed by a certified public accounting firm.

A Financial Audit - Most people think of an audit in terms of their tax filings with the IRS.  However, if you are a business owner who has borrowed significant sums from a bank or other lending institution or you have outside investors, you may well be aware of another type of audit - a financial audit performed by a certified public accounting firm.

Executive Compensation - A recent court decision demonstrates once again that the IRS is examining executive compensation with a critical eye and companies with potentially excessive comp packages had better be prepared to defend their position or face disallowed deductions along with penalty and interest.




Fall, 2002

Preparing A Will - The tragic events at the World Trade Center and the Pentagon have caused many people around the country to ponder their own mortality during the past year and we and our clients are no exception. 

Generation Skipping Transfer Tax - As we have pointed out in past articles, estate taxes represent the single largest threat to a family's wealth over the course of several generations.  Depending upon the size of your estate and the state in which you live, estate taxes can consume more than half of your family's wealth without proper planning. 

Multi-state Taxation - You have been growing your business patiently and consistently for a few years now and finally you are ready to venture out across your state line.  Of course, if you're wise (which our clients undoubtedly are), you will first investigate the rules for doing business and the tax ramifications of any particular state you are looking into.



Summer, 2002

Keeping Personal Records - Each year as we deliver our clients' tax return copies and filing information to them, we inevitably get asked the age-old question:  "How long do I need to keep this stuff?" 

IRAs - The FAQs - There are a number of rules and regulations surrounding IRA investments, and the amount of information can often be overwhelming. The deduction limits are also changing next year and thereafter.  We have assembled this list of questions we are frequently asked in order to make it easier to find the answers you are looking for.

Depositing Payroll Taxes - One of the first encounters a new business owner has with the federal government is the requirement to withhold and deposit FICA and income taxes.   If you don't understand and adhere to the rules, the penalties can be substantial. 



Spring, 2002

2002 Tax Act - On March 9th of 2002, the "Job Creation and Worker Assistance Act" was signed into law by President Bush.  The new law doesn't contain many benefits for individual taxpayers, but it does include a 13 week extension of unemployment benefits and some relief measures aimed at businesses.

Sales To Related Parties - Over the years, we have had the difficult task of bringing many clients down to earth after they had "developed" the perfect plan to rid themselves of a piece of property by selling it at a loss to a relative and thereby gaining a tax deduction.  It certainly sounds like a grand plan.  There is, however one small catch - Code Sec. 267 specifically disallows losses on sales to related parties.

Multi-state Taxation - You have been growing your business patiently and consistently for a few years now and finally you are ready to venture out across your state line.  Of course, if you're wise (which our clients undoubtedly are), you will first investigate the rules for doing business and the tax ramifications of any particular state you are looking into.



Winter, 2001-2002

Deferred Giving - As baby boomers move toward retirement years and begin inheriting the accumulated wealth of their parents, we are seeing more and more charities approach our clients about "deferred giving." 

The Kiddie Tax - For our clients that have children under the age of 14 earning interest and dividends, we often are faced with a choice of how to report that investment income.  We can  either include the income on the parent's return or file a separate return for the child.

Qualified Tuition Plans - Due to recent changes in the tax law, more of our clients are hearing about qualified state tuition plans (otherwise known as Section 529 Plans). These state-sponsored college savings plans are becoming much more popular and if you have children or grandchildren who may someday need funds for higher education, these plans may help make paying for that education much more affordable.

Getting Organized For Tax Filing - Now that we have come upon another tax season (that noise you hear in the background is the sound of our staff sighing), we typically spend the first few days getting our office organized for the oncoming rush.  Getting organized is also good advice for most of our clients as well.

 

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