Business Taxes Blog

2018 Q1 tax calendar: Key deadlines for businesses and other employers

December 7, 2017

Be prepared for the tax-related deadlines your business will face in Q1 of 2018.

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Cutting costs when you’ve gone over budget

November 30, 2017

Busted your business budget this year? Don’t panic … plan!

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Reduce your 2017 tax bill by buying business assets

November 22, 2017

Keep possible tax law changes in mind as you consider buying business assets before year end.

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Could an FSA offer the benefits flexibility you need?

November 16, 2017

Helping employees fund health care expenses can be as simple as three letters: F-S-A.

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Why you may want to accelerate your property tax payment into 2017

November 16, 2017

Smart timing of deductible expenses can reduce your tax liability, and poor timing can unnecessarily increase it. Should you prepay property tax on your home to accelerate your deduction into 2017?

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The write stuff: A letter of instructions

November 3, 2017

Explain your intentions to heirs using plain language in a letter of instructions. Though it has no legal authority behind it, the letter can ease loved ones through a difficult time after your death.

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Fortifying your business with enterprise risk management

November 3, 2017

A variety of risks may one day threaten your business. An enterprise risk management program can be the fortress that helps you ward them off.

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Retirement savings opportunity for the self-employed

October 26, 2017

Contributions to qualified retirement plans generally are tax deductible or pretax. If you’re self-employed, you can boost your tax-advantaged saving by setting up a retirement plan for 2017.

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Valuation often affects succession plans in hard-to-see ways

October 26, 2017

The appraised value of any given company is no simple thing. As you develop a fully formed succession plan, be sure you clearly see the whole picture when it comes to valuation.

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Accelerate your retirement savings with a cash balance plan

October 19, 2017

Many business owners are so focused on their business that they neglect retirement planning. If you’re among them, setting up a cash balance plan for your business can turbocharge your retirement savings.

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A Crummey trust can preserve the annual gift tax exclusion

October 19, 2017

If you want to make annual exclusion gifts to loved ones but retain some control over when they use the gifted assets, consider a Crummey trust.

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Who should own your life insurance policy?

October 12, 2017

Your decision on who should own your life insurance policy at your death depends in part on whether you want to replace income, provide liquidity or transfer wealth to loved ones.

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4 ways to get (and keep) your business data in order

October 12, 2017

They say nature has a tendency to fall into disorder. The same holds true for business data. Here are four ways to keep your digital house in order and get the most from your company’s information.

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Critical connection: How costs impact pricing

October 6, 2017

They say you’ve got to spend money to make money. But are you spending too much? Or charging too little? Electrify your company’s profitability with a strong link between costs and pricing.

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“Bunching” medical expenses will be a tax-smart strategy for many in 2017

October 6, 2017

Accelerating deductible expenses into the current year is one way to reduce your tax bill. Tax reform may make “bunching” medical expenses into 2017 an especially valuable acceleration strategy.

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Investors: Beware of the wash sale rule

September 28, 2017

While no one wants to lose money, realizing a capital loss on an investment can provide tax savings. Don’t let the wash sale rule wash out the tax benefits.

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2017 Q4 tax calendar: Key deadlines for businesses and other employers

September 28, 2017

Business owners need to be aware of the Q4 2017 tax filing deadlines coming up.

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Should your business use per diem rates for travel reimbursement?

September 21, 2017

For businesses with a lot of employees who travel for work, managing the substantiation and reimbursement of these expenses can be an administrative nightmare. Per diem rates simplify the process while preserving tax benefits.

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Why you should boost your 401(k) contribution rate between now and year end

September 21, 2017

Have you been contributing enough to your 401(k) plan in 2017?

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How profitable are your customers?

September 14, 2017

The customer may always be right, but the customer isn’t always profitable. There’s only one way to find out for sure...

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Save more for college through the tax advantages of a 529 savings plan

September 14, 2017

Sec. 529 plans can help you build a large college nest egg via tax-deferred compounding.

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Tax planning critical when buying a business

September 7, 2017

Acquiring another business? All too often, as parties talk sales price and deal structure, many tax issues fall by the wayside. Be sure to include tax planning in your deal negotiations.

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Estate tax relief for family businesses is available … in the form of a deferral

September 7, 2017

Estate tax relief for owners of family businesses is available. Find out if you qualify.

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You don’t have to take business insurance costs sitting down

August 31, 2017

You shouldn’t run your business without proper insurance coverage. But savvy owners can identify ways to lower premiums. Here are some ideas to consider.

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The ABCs of the tax deduction for educator expenses

August 31, 2017

Summer has flown by and now it’s time for students and their teachers to head back to class. Teachers who buy supplies for their classrooms may be eligible for a tax break. Learn more.

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Powers of attorney: Springing vs. nonspringing

August 24, 2017

Two crucial components of an estate plan are powers of attorney for property and for health care. A nonspringing power of attorney is generally preferable to a springing one. Learn why it matters.

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Ensuring a peaceful succession with a buy-sell agreement

August 24, 2017

What can go wrong when a business owner must (or decides to) leave the company? Plenty! Here’s how a buy-sell agreement can help keep the peace.

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How to determine if you need to worry about estate taxes

August 17, 2017

When Congress comes back from its August recess, it’s expected to start addressing tax reform. An estate tax repeal is one reform that’s been proposed, but a repeal may not affect you. Here’s why.

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Listening to your customers by tracking lost sales

August 17, 2017

A profitable new sales opportunity may be right around the corner. But how do you know when to make the turn? By tracking lost sales. We have some great ideas for doing so.

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Material participation key to deducting LLC and LLP losses

August 10, 2017

LLC and LLP owners: Learn what you need to do to be able to deduct current business losses.

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Will Congress revive expired tax breaks?

August 10, 2017

College tuition, mortgage insurance premiums, mortgage debt forgiveness: These might all save you tax on your 2017 return . . . if Congress extends expired breaks for them.

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Are income taxes taking a bite out of your trusts?

August 3, 2017

Trusts are a common estate planning tool because of the many benefits they can provide. But sometimes trust income can trigger high tax rates. Here’s why, plus three ways to soften the blow.

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6 ways to control your unemployment tax costs

August 3, 2017

If your business is paying high unemployment taxes, here’s how to reduce your tax bill.

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3 midyear tax planning strategies for individuals

July 27, 2017

Tax planning is not just a year-end activity. Boost the power of your individual tax planning by implementing these three strategies now.

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The stretch IRA: A simple yet powerful estate planning tool

July 27, 2017

Do you know how to turn an IRA from a retirement tool into an estate planning tool? The answer is to “stretch” it. Doing so is surprisingly simple.

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Keep real estate separate from your business’s corporate assets to save tax

July 20, 2017

Many businesses operate as C corporations so they can buy and hold real estate just as they do equipment, inventory and other assets. But this can be a costly tax mistake.

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Fine-tuning your company’s compensation strategy

July 20, 2017

Are you happy with your company’s approach to compensation? More important, are your employees? It may be time for an adjustment to ensure you’re providing equitable compensation.

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All fringe benefits aren’t created equal for tax purposes

July 13, 2017

Is your business applying the proper tax treatment to the employee benefits you provide?

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Summer is a good time to start your 2017 tax planning and organize your tax records

July 13, 2017

Taxes may not be top of mind during the summer, but a little effort now can pay off later!

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Leaving specific assets to specific heirs is an estate planning no-no

June 30, 2017

Don’t bequeath specific assets to specific heirs. Here’s why, and what to do instead.

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Seasonal business? Optimize your operating cycle

June 30, 2017

Seasonal businesses must strike while the iron is hot. Here’s how to keep cash flow strong.

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Pay attention to the details when selling investments

June 15, 2017

If you want to minimize taxes on your sales of investments, the details matter.

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Dot the “i’s” and cross the “t’s” on loans between your business and its owners

June 15, 2017

Treating transfers of money between a closely held business and its owners as loans can provide tax advantages. But it’s critical to establish that the transaction is truly a loan.

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Are your retirement savings secure from creditors?

June 8, 2017

Provide yourself peace of mind by taking steps now to protect retirement savings from creditors. Qualified employer plans and traditional and Roth IRAs can be at risk to potential creditors’ claims.

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Business owners: Put your successor in a position to succeed

June 8, 2017

Want to ensure your company’s future success? Mentor the person taking over for you.

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Donating a vehicle might not provide the tax deduction you expect

June 1, 2017

Before donating a vehicle, find out the charity’s intent. How the charity will use the vehicle can have a significant impact on your charitable deduction.

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Consider the tax consequences before making an employee a partner

June 1, 2017

Making a key employee a partner can be good for your business, but watch out for tax traps.

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Business owners: When it comes to IRS audits, be prepared

May 25, 2017

Concerned about being audited by the IRS? Here’s what business owners need to know.

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A “back door” Roth IRA can benefit higher-income taxpayers

May 25, 2017

Could you benefit from opening the “back door” to a Roth IRA?

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Hire your children to save taxes for your business and your family

May 16, 2017

Own a business? Have children who are teenagers, college students or new grads? If you hire them this summer, not only can they benefit but you can enjoy tax savings, too.

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Operating across state lines presents tax risks — or possibly rewards

May 10, 2017

Beware: Operating across state lines means possibly being subject to taxation in that state.

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Do you know the tax implications of your C corp.’s buy-sell agreement?

May 3, 2017

A buy-sell agreement is critical to most closely held businesses with multiple owners. But a C corporation’s buy-sell agreement could produce adverse tax consequences if not structured properly.

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Look at your employees with cybersecurity in mind

April 26, 2017

All it takes is one employee mistake or bad hire to expose your business’s data to hackers.

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Bartering may be cash-free, but it’s not tax-free

April 20, 2017

Bartering businesses can’t cut Uncle Sam out of the deal. Here are the tax consequences.

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Getting your money’s worth out of a company retreat

April 13, 2017

Don’t let your company retreat waste time and money. Plan carefully for optimal results.

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Listen and trust: The power of collaborative management

April 6, 2017

Not sure about your company’s next big strategic move? Ask your managers!

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Consider key person insurance as a succession plan safeguard

March 30, 2017

Business owners: Expect the best, but be prepared for the worst with key person insurance.

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Make sure the IRS won't consider your business to be a "hobby"

March 23, 2017

Beware: You can lose tax benefits if the IRS views your business as a hobby.

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The Section 1031 exchange: Why it’s such a great tax planning tool

March 16, 2017

Thinking of selling business property? Consider a “like-kind” exchange instead.

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An EAP can keep your top players on the floor

March 9, 2017

A strong benefits package is essential to every employer. Does yours include an employee assistance program (EAP)? An EAP can enable you to help employees struggling with certain personal issues.

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Don’t make hunches — crunch the numbers

March 2, 2017

One bad investment can crush a business. Consider factoring discounted cash flow metrics into your investment decisions. They can help estimate the financial impact of a strategic move.

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PTO banks: A smart HR solution for many companies

February 23, 2017

Is managing paid time off dragging down your company’s productivity? PTO banks can help.

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SEPs: A powerful retroactive tax planning tool

February 17, 2017

Business owners can reduce their 2016 tax bills by setting up a SEP retirement plan now.

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Envision your advisory board before you form it

February 9, 2017

Need a fresh perspective on strategic planning? Insights from managers and employees are important. But sometimes business owners need external ideas from an advisory board. Let’s talk about yours.

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Is your business committed to its cost-control regimen?

February 2, 2017

At the beginning of the year, many people decide they’re going to get in the best shape of their lives. Similarly, many business owners declare that they intend to cut costs and operate at peak efficiency going forward.

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Why 2016 may be an especially good year to take bonus depreciation

January 26, 2017

Many depreciation-related breaks are available to help businesses offset the costs of investing in the business. If you bought equipment or other assets in 2016, 50% bonus depreciation might save you tax.

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Identify all of your company's retirement plan fiduciaries

January 19, 2017

Today’s employers must offer competitive benefits. But if you maintain a retirement plan, you’ve got to know who’s considered a plan fiduciary in order to effectively manage risk

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4 principles of competitive intelligence

January 11, 2017

The more you know, the better your business can perform. A competitive intelligence policy can support the effective, but ethical, gathering of information on your competitors and industry.

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Ensure your retirement benefits provider is truly providing

January 4, 2017

It’s not unusual for a business to re-evaluate its vendors on occasion. So how is your retirement plan provider doing? Here are some good questions to ask and important cost issues to consider.

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3 ways to get started on next year's budget

December 28, 2016

Start making next year’s budget a reality now! Here are three good places to begin.

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Your company’s balance sheet makes great reading this time of year

December 21, 2016

Thrilling tales of assets, liabilities and equity! Time to start reading your balance sheet.

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Keeping your family business in the family

December 14, 2016

Family business owners: Your company is your financial legacy. Here’s how to protect it.

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Can you pay bonuses in 2017 but deduct them this year?

December 7, 2016

An annual bonus plan can be a great way to attract, retain and motivate employees. It can provide tax benefits, too: Your business might be able to take a 2016 deduction for bonuses paid in 2017.

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A quick look at the President-elect's tax plan for businesses

November 30, 2016

What’s the President-elect’s tax plan for businesses? Generally it would reduce tax rates for both corporations and flow-through entities to 15% but eliminate many credits and deductions. Learn more.

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There's still time to set up a retirement plan for 2016

November 16, 2016

Business owners: Don’t have a tax-advantaged retirement plan? Consider setting one up.

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The tax-smart way to replace a business vehicle

November 8, 2016

Have a business vehicle you want to replace? Here’s why you should sell it, not trade it in.

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Depreciation-related breaks offer 2016 tax savings on business real estate

November 1, 2016

Enhanced tax breaks are available for certain business real estate investments. Here’s more.

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What the self-employed need to know about employment taxes

October 25, 2016

Self-employed? You may owe double the employment tax you’d owe as an employee. Here’s how to meet your employment tax obligations and perhaps even save tax.

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Are you timing business income and expenses to your tax advantage?

October 19, 2016

The timing of your business’s income and deductible expenses can have a big impact on your tax liability. Here’s how to determine the right timing strategies for you this year.

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5 ways to speed up collections

October 11, 2016

Slow-paying customers can turn your cash flow to sludge and put your company’s very existence at risk. Always be on the lookout for ways to fine-tune your collection process.

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Business owners, help your estate by gifting company stock

October 4, 2016

As a business owner, you’ve got to think about how to preserve your wealth for heirs. One idea to consider: Give away company stock to keep its future appreciation out of your taxable estate.

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Businesses can also be disrupted by tax identity theft

September 22, 2016

Business tax identity theft can result in big financial losses and reputational damage. Here’s a rundown of the issue and some red flags to look out for.

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Documentation is the key to business expense deductions

September 15, 2016

You need to keep detailed, accurate records to protect your business tax deductions. Here are two court cases where taxpayers learned that lesson the hard way.

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Looking for a retirement plan for your business? Here's one SIMPLE option

September 12, 2016

Looking for a retirement plan for your small business that’s easy to set up and maintain? Consider a SIMPLE IRA. Here are the details.

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Combining business and vacation travel: What can you deduct?

September 1, 2016

There might be ways to combine domestic business trips with vacation days and still be able to write off some of the expenses. Here are the rules.

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