Archive | August, 2012

Estate Planning – Part 1

Estate planning is the process of planning for the disposal of property during life, at death, and after death in a manner that best carries out a person’s desires, while minimizing income, gift and death taxes. The following list contains common matters you need to arrange for, part of a comprehensive estate planning package. 5 […]

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Estate Planning – Part 2

5 STEPS TO PLANNING YOUR ESTATE A PREPARE A WILL A will at a minimum should cover: Common Problems found in wills include: Naming the wrong executor/personal representative Such as a family member who may lack expertise. Besides handling the estate in a manner consistent with your wishes, the executor is personally responsible for the […]

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Selling Your Residence


Per the IRS, the home you live in most of the time is your main home. When you sell it you will typically either make money or lose money. If you make money it is called a capital gain.   A Gain Capital gains are taxable except that a capital gain of $250,000 or less […]

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Charitable Contributions


There are two kinds of charitable donations you can make: Cash and Everything Else. Cash Donations Cash charitable donations are deductible when made to a qualified charitable organization, and are limited to 50% of your income. This 50% limit is imposed on your total charitable deduction, cash plus non-cash donations. Everything Else Goods donated to […]

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Family Giving


Before the end of the year, take advantage of what is known as the annual gift-tax exclusion. This allows you to give up to $14,000 a year to each of any number of recipients. It allows $28,000 a year to each recipient if your spouse joins in the gift. The exclusion is an annual one […]

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Auto Expenses


If you use your car for business purposes, you may be able to deduct car expenses. You generally can use one of two methods to figure your expenses: Actual Expenses or the Standard Mileage Rate. Actual Expenses Deductible Items — If you choose to deduct actual expenses you can deduct the cost of the following items: […]

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Independent Contractor or Employee


Independent Contractor or Employee Are your workers independent contractors or employees? The answer can have a profound impact on your record keeping requirements as a small business owner. Knowing whether your workers are or are not employees will affect the amount of taxes you must withhold from their pay. It will affect how much additional […]

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Meals & Entertainment


In general, meals are deductible when incurred for business or for the production of income. This means you can deduct meals from your gross revenue as a legitimate cost of doing business if the meals are business related. In other words, the meals should be part of a business meeting.  50 % limitation: only half […]

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Home Office


Home Office / Business Use of the Home If you are self-employed and you use part of your home for business, you may be able to deduct expenses for the business use of your home. These deductible expenses may include the business portion of real estate taxes, deductible mortgage interest, rent, insurance, utilities, maintenance or […]

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Capital Losses


If you are about to sell a capital asset at a loss – stock in your company, for example – consider putting the property in joint tenancy with your spouse before the sale. The reason: If you can’t deduct the full amount of the loss, you can carry it forward. But if anything happens to […]

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