Archive for Taxes

Take Advantage of the IRA-to-Charity Provision

May 3rd, 2016

Individuals age 70.5 or over—who must withdraw annual required minimum distributions (RMDs) from their IRAs—will be pleased to learn that the temporary provision allowing taxpayers to transfer up to $100,000 annually from their IRAs to qualified charities has been made permanent. If you are age 70.5 or over and have an IRA, taking advantage of […]

Proving Noncash Charitable Contributions

April 26th, 2016

One of the most common tax-deductible charitable contributions encountered is that of household goods and used clothing. The major complication of this type of contribution is establishing the dollar value of the contribution. According to the tax code, this is the fair market value (FMV), which is defined as the value that a willing buyer […]

Household Help – Employee or Contractor?

April 12th, 2016

Article Highlights: Household Employee Definition Employee Control Factors Self-employed or Employee Withholding Requirements Reporting Requirements Frequently taxpayers will hire an individual or firm to provide services at the taxpayer’s home. Because the IRS requires employers to withhold taxes for employees and issue them W-2s at the end of the year, the big question is whether […]

2015 Transition Relief under the Employer Shared Responsibility Provisions

April 5th, 2016

Under the Affordable Care Act, certain employers – referred to as applicable large employers (ALEs) – are subject to the employer shared responsibility provisions, which require ALEs to offer affordable minimum essential coverage healthcare coverage that provides minimum value to full-time employees and their dependents (but not their spouses). Failure to do so can result […]

Not All Home Mortgage Interest Is Deductible; The IRS is Watching

March 29th, 2016

One of the current IRS audit initiatives is checking to see if taxpayers are deducting too much home equity debt interest. Generally, taxpayers are allowed to deduct the interest on up to $1 million of home acquisition debt (includes subsequent debt incurred to make improvements, but not repairs) and the interest on up to $100,000 […]

Jointly or Separately? How to File After Saying I Do

March 15th, 2016

Article Summary: Filing Options Married Filing Jointly Unpleasant Consequences Pleasant Consequences Married Filing Separately A taxpayer’s filing status for the year is based upon his or her marital status at the close of the tax year. Thus, if you get married on the last day of the tax year, you are treated as married for […]

Don’t Miss Out on the Earned Income Tax Credit

March 8th, 2016

Article Highlights: Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) Qualifications Computing the Credit Limit on Investment Income Military Combat Pay Election EITC Scams Banning EITC Filers The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) is a tax benefit for working people who have low to moderate income. It provides a tax credit that is treated like tax withholding: it […]

IRS Announces 2016 Standard Mileage Rates

February 23rd, 2016

Article Highlights: 2016 standard mileage rates Business, charitable, medical and moving rates Switching between the actual expense and the standard mileage rate methods Special allowances for SUVs As it does every year, the Internal Revenue Service recently announced the inflation- adjusted 2016 optional standard mileage rates used to calculate the deductible costs of operating an […]

Homeowner Energy Tax Credits Get New Life

February 16th, 2016

Article Highlights: Home Energy-Saving Improvements Solar and Other Types of Energy Generation Systems Things to Consider Before Signing Up Recently passed legislation has given new life to two homeowner energy credits that had expired or were about to expire, providing renewed opportunities to homeowners wanting to take advantage of these credits and reduce their energy […]

Are Legal Expenses Tax Deductible?

January 26th, 2016

Article Highlights: Legal Fees Associated With Personal, Living, or Family Issues Legal Fees Associated With Business and the Production of Taxable Income Examples of Legal Fees and Their Deductibility The Tax Benefit of Legal Fee Deductions A frequent question that arises is whether legal expenses are deductible. The answer to that question can be both […]


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October 17, 2008
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