Blog

It’s crucial to review and update your estate plan in light of significant life changes or new tax laws. It’s equally important to be aware of strategies that can be implemented after your death to achieve your estate planning goals. The flexibility postmortem strategies provide is especially important during times of estate tax law uncertainty, like now. If you’re married, here are two postmortem estate planning strategies you should know...

Read more
January 28, 2017

Investment interest — interest on debt used to buy assets held for investment, such as margin debt used to buy securities — generally is deductible for both regular tax and alternative minimum tax purposes. But special rules apply that can make this itemized deduction less beneficial than you might think. Limits on the deduction First, you can’t deduct interest you incurred to produce tax-exempt income. For example, if you borrow...

Read more
January 26, 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. But, like keeping up an exercise routine, controlling costs takes an ongoing effort. You need to not only review expenses now, but also commit yourself to doing so regularly. Here are some...

Read more
January 26, 2017

Bonus depreciation allows businesses to recover the costs of depreciable property more quickly by claiming additional first-year depreciation for qualified assets. The PATH Act, signed into law a little over a year ago, extended 50% bonus depreciation through 2017. Claiming this break is generally beneficial, though in some cases a business might save more tax in the long run if they forgo it. However, 2016 may be an especially good...

Read more
January 24, 2017

While it’s natural to set up trusts in the state where you live, you may be losing out on significant benefits available in more “trust-friendly” states. For example, some states: • Don’t tax trust income,• Authorize domestic asset protection trusts, which provide added protection against creditors’ claims,• Permit silent trusts, under which beneficiaries need not be notified of their interests,• Allow perpetual trusts, enabling grantors to establish “dynasty” trusts that...

Read more
January 24, 2017

IRS permits same-sex couples to recalculate marital exclusion amounts http://bit.ly/2jsmUPY

Read more
January 19, 2017

Many businesses receive payment in advance for goods and services. Examples include magazine subscriptions, long-term supply contracts, organization memberships, computer software licenses and gift cards. Generally, advance payments are included in taxable income in the year they’re received, even if you defer a portion of the income for financial reporting purposes. But there are exceptions that might provide you some savings when you file your 2016 income tax return. Deferral...

Read more
January 18, 2017

As the saying goes, nothing lasts forever — and that goes for most companies. Then again, with the right succession plan in place, you can do your part to ensure your business continues down a path of success for at least another generation. From there, it will be your successor’s job to propel it further into perpetuity. Some business owners make the mistake of largely ignoring succession planning under the...

Read more
January 18, 2017

The most useful metric to gauge a company’s performance isn’t necessarily net income, pretax profits or earnings per share, as defined under U.S. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP). In some industries, investors and lenders turn to non-GAAP measures for additional information. Before relying on non-GAAP metrics, however, it’s important to understand what’s included and excluded to avoid making misinformed investment decisions. Here are the upsides and potential downsides of using...

Read more
January 18, 2017

The executor’s role is critical to the administration of an estate and the achievement of estate planning objectives. So your first instinct may be to name a trusted family member as executor (also referred to as a personal representative). But that might not be the best choice. Important duties Your executor has a variety of important duties, including:• Arranging for probate of your will (if necessary) and obtaining court approval...

Read more
January 13, 2017