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What type of expenses can’t be written off by your business?

If you read the Internal Revenue Code (and you probably don’t want to!), you may be surprised to find that most business deductions aren’t specifically listed. It doesn’t explicitly state that you can deduct office supplies and certain other expenses. Some expenses are detailed in the tax code, but the general rule is contained in…

Should your health care plan be more future-focused?

The pace of health care cost inflation has remained moderate over the past year or so, and employers are trying to keep it that way. In response, many businesses aren’t seeking immediate cost-cutting measures or asking employees to shoulder more of the burden. Rather, they’re looking to “future-focused” health care plan features to encourage healthful…

Tax Related Myths

2019 – 04/23 The April tax filing deadline has passed, but tax-related myths on social media continue, warns the IRS. One such myth is this: If you received a tax refund this year, there’s no need to adjust your 2019 withholding. To help avoid an unexpected tax outcome next year, taxpayers should use the IRS…

Wage Base Increase in 2020

2019 – 04/24 The Social Security Administration (SSA) anticipates a wage base increase for 2020. The SSA Office of the Chief Actuary has projected that the Social Security wage base will increase from $132,900 this year to $136,800 in 2020. The wage base is the maximum amount of earnings subject to Social Security tax. The…

Qualified Plan Loans

2019 – 04/24 In an Information Letter, the IRS advised that, while the U.S. tax code imposes certain requirements on qualified employer plans that offer loans to participants, such plans don’t have to offer loans at all. And even if they do, they may restrict the loans to certain situations, such as “hardships.” The IRS…

No Match Letters

2019 – 04/25 Employers may receive “no match” letters from the Social Security Administration (SSA). In March, the SSA began mailing notices to employers with name and Social Security number combinations submitted on Forms W-2 that don’t match its records. “The purpose of the letter is to advise employers that corrections are needed in order…

Tax Withholding Calculator

2019 – 04/29 Were you unsatisfied with the results of your 2018 income tax returns? Perhaps you had a big surprise: Maybe you owed the government a lot of money. Or, you got a refund much larger than expected, money you could have used during the year. Either way, it’s a good time to make…

Joint Returns and Divorce

2019 – 04/29 The IRS has provided guidance to its employees about taxpayers who filed joint tax returns before separating or divorcing. The guidance concerns what collection activity information can and can’t be disclosed to the other spouse with respect to the couple’s returns. Certain information can be disclosed verbally, after a verbal or written…

Prepare for the worst with a business turnaround strategy

Many businesses have a life cycle that, as life cycles tend to do, concludes with a period of decline and failure. Often, the demise of a company is driven by internal factors — such as weak financial oversight, lack of management consensus or one-person rule. External factors typically contribute, as well. These may include disruptive…

The Security Summit

2019 – 04/11 The “Security Summit” is a partnership between the IRS, state tax agencies and the private-sector tax industry. It was formed to combat identity theft refund fraud. The IRS announced that “significant progress” has been made in this endeavor. Steps taken by Summit partners include expanding IRS fraud filters, requiring states to request…

Donations to tax-exempt organizations

2019 – 04/18 Taxpayers who itemize deductions at tax time can still deduct qualified charitable donations to tax-exempt organizations. But before you donate, the IRS warns, verify that the recipient is tax-exempt. For that purpose, the IRS has created a tool that lets people obtain information about tax-exempt status. The tool, called the Tax Exempt…

Payroll Tax Enforcement

2019 – 04/15 The IRS reports that payroll taxes withheld by employers account for nearly 72% of revenue that it collects. That’s why noncompliance and cheating in this area is one of the biggest problems facing our tax system. In response, the IRS initiated a two-week campaign to shore up compliance (from 3/25 to 4/5)….

Travel Expenses

2019 – 04/16 The U.S. Tax Court has denied a deduction for travel expenses by a taxpayer who provided finance-related services to multiple clients. The taxpayer failed to prove that his family home, and not the site of a long-term assignment, was his tax home. For purposes of deducting business expenses, a taxpayer’s “home” is…

©2019 Bland Garvey CPA