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Gift or Prize?

2019 – 09/19 A competition winner must pay tax on the prize. A teenager was awarded a car for good grades and attendance. Her school had entered her in a local car dealership’s competition, along with other qualifying students. Her name was then pulled in a drawing. She asserted that the car was a gift…

Social Security & Pension Income Tax Calculator

2019 – 09/17 Are you a retiree who may owe taxes this year on your Social Security or pension income? The IRS has created a tool that calculates the taxable portion of benefits. It also incorporates that information into an overall estimate of the projected tax liability and withholding for the year. If a withholding…

How to treat your business website costs for tax purposes

These days, most businesses need a website to remain competitive. It’s an easy decision to set one up and maintain it. But determining the proper tax treatment for the costs involved in developing a website isn’t so easy. That’s because the IRS hasn’t released any official guidance on these costs yet. Consequently, you must apply…

How to research a business customer’s creditworthiness

Extending credit to business customers can be an effective way to build goodwill and nurture long-term buyers. But if you extend customer credit, it also brings sizable financial risk to your business, as cash flow could grind to a halt if these customers don’t make their payments. Even worse, they could declare bankruptcy and bow…

Tax Credits For Higher Education

2019 – 09/12 School’s back in session. For many parents and students in higher education, that means school bills are also back. To help offset those costs, eligible taxpayers who are footing the bills may be able to reduce the tax owed on next year’s tax returns by taking advantage of one of two available…

Do You Have Tax Questions?

2019 – 09/12 Do you have tax questions? You may be wondering about the options for paying your bill, as well as possible penalties. Or perhaps you’re wondering if you have an outstanding balance with the IRS. Taxpayer questions never end. You can find answers by visiting an IRS Web page called “Let Us Help…

First-Year Depreciation Deduction

2019 – 09/16 The IRS has issued final regs on the 100% additional first-year depreciation deduction. It allows businesses to write off most depreciable business assets in the year they’re placed in service. Changes from the regs proposed in August include qualified improvement property, leasehold improvement property, restaurant property, and retail improvement property. A taxpayer…

For best results, start your strategic planning early

Time flies when you’re having fun — and running a business. Although it’s probably too early to start chilling a bottle of bubbly for New Year’s Eve, it’s certainly not too early for business owners to start doing some strategic planning for next year. Here are some ways to get started. Begin with your financials…

Tax Tips for New Businesses

2019 – 08/29 Are you starting a new business? That can be both rewarding and overwhelming. The IRS has issued some tax tips to help you get off to a solid start. A primary decision you’ll need to make is which business structure to use, including sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, S corporation, or Limited Liability…

Create an Emergency Preparedness Plan

2019 – 08/30 Be prepared for a disaster. With Hurricane Dorian approaching the East Coast of the United States, it’s a good time to make sure to create or update an emergency preparedness plan. The IRS reminds taxpayers to secure and duplicate essential documents, create lists of property and know where to find information if…

New Phishing Scam

2019 – 08/23 The IRS announced it has detected a new phishing scam involving unsolicited emails from IRS imposters. Subject lines on the phony emails include “Automatic Income Tax Reminder” or “Electronic Tax Return Reminder.” However, the wording is changing as the scam spreads across the nation. The emails have links that show an IRS.gov-like…

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