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filing status

What Is Your Taxpayer Filing Status?

For tax purposes, December 31 means more than New Year’s Eve celebrations. It affects the filing status box that will be checked on your tax return for the year. When you file your return, you do so with one of five filing statuses, which depend in part on whether you’re married or unmarried on December…

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traditional 401(k) vs. roth 401(k)

Using Your 401(k) Plan to Save This Year and Next

You can reduce taxes and save for retirement by contributing to a tax-advantaged retirement plan. If your employer offers a 401(k) or Roth 401(k) plan, contributing to it is a taxwise way to build a nest egg. If you’re not already contributing the maximum allowed, consider increasing your contribution rate between now and year end.…

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R&D credit

The R&D Credit: Are You Leaving Tax Dollars on the Table?

Federal and state research credits (often referred to as the “research and development,” “R&D” or “research and experimentation” credit) are among the most valuable tax incentives available today. But many businesses overlook these tax breaks because they mistakenly believe that they don’t qualify or wouldn’t benefit. In recent years, federal legislation has expanded the availability…

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payroll tax penalty

Small Businesses: Stay Clear of a Severe Payroll Tax Penalty

One of the most laborious tasks for small businesses is managing payroll. But it’s critical that you not only withhold the right amount of taxes from employees’ paychecks but also that you pay them over to the federal government on time. If you willfully fail to do so, you could personally be hit with the…

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repairs vs. improvements

Did You Repair Your Business Property or Improve It?

Repairs to tangible property, such as buildings, machinery, equipment or vehicles, can provide businesses a valuable current tax deduction — as long as the so-called repairs weren’t actually “improvements.” The costs of incidental repairs and maintenance can be immediately expensed and deducted on the current year’s income tax return. But costs incurred to improve tangible…

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bar-code technology

How to Keep Track of Small Tools and Equipment

Whether it’s hard hats and drills on a jobsite, iPads in an office or RFID readers in a warehouse, small tools and equipment have a tendency to disappear at many companies. The cost of lost, damaged and stolen items can quickly add up, consuming profits and cash flow. What can you do to manage these…

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new kiddie tax rules

Kiddie Tax: New Hazards, New Opportunities

Despite its name, the “kiddie tax” is far from child’s play. And a change made by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) puts some adult teeth into the tax. Now, children with unearned income may find themselves in a tax bracket higher than that of their parents. At the same time, the TCJA creates…

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business loss rule

Excess Business Loss Rule May be Unfavorable to You

Sole proprietorships and pass-through entity structures, which include partnerships, S corporations and certain limited liability companies (LLCs), provide owners with some valuable tax benefits, such as avoidance of double taxation and the potential ability to deduct losses from the business on their individual tax returns. But the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) has placed…

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QCDs

IRA Charitable Donations are an Alternative to Taxable Required Distributions

Are you charitably minded and have a significant amount of money in an IRA? If you’re age 70½ or older, and don’t need the money from required minimum distributions, you may benefit by giving these amounts to charity. IRA distribution basics A popular way to transfer IRA assets to charity is through a tax provision…

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profits interest award

Valuing Profits Interests in LLCs

The use of so-called “profits interest” awards as a tool to attract and retain skilled workers has increased, as more companies are being structured as limited liability companies (LLCs), rather than as corporations. But accounting complexity has caused some private companies to shy away from these arrangements. Fortunately, relief from the Financial Accounting Standards Board…

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