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Personal Tax & Financial Planning Articles

Personal Tax & Financial Planning Articles

Tax Tips – May / June

Tax Tips – May / June

Hang On To Your PassportA 2015 law allows the U.S. State Department to deny your passport application — or revoke or limit your current passport — if the IRS certifies that you have a seriously delinquent tax debt (SDTD). You have an SDTD if 1) you owe...

The “Backdoor” Roth IRA Remains Open

The “Backdoor” Roth IRA Remains Open

The Roth IRA is an attractive savings vehicle, offering tax-free retirement income and other significant benefits. Unfortunately, income limitations prevent many people from contributing to these accounts. But even if you can’t contribute directly, there’s...

Getting Your Affairs In Order When You’re Terminally Ill

Getting Your Affairs In Order When You’re Terminally Ill

If you receive the diagnosis of a terminal illness, likely the last thing on your mind is estate planning. But taking the time now to get your affairs in order can provide you and your family some peace of mind.What to do firstHere are some (but by no...

Timing compensation in a changing tax climate

All eyes on Sec. 409A Many people expect to see significant tax reform in the near future now that Republicans are in control of Congress and President Trump is in office. Among the changes being discussed are reduced marginal tax rates for individuals, lower...

BDIT Lets You Give Away Property Without Losing Control

BDIT Lets You Give Away Property Without Losing Control

By temporarily doubling the gift and estate tax exemption, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) opened a window of opportunity for affluent families to transfer assets tax-free. To take advantage of the higher exemption amount, many families that own...

Relax, But Don’t Forget About Taxes

Relax, But Don’t Forget About Taxes

Owning a vacation home requires tax planning A vacation home can be many things to different people. For example, it can be a relaxing refuge for friends and family, or the property can serve as an income-producing investment if you choose to rent it out when you’re...

GST Tax Exemption Has Increased, But Not Permanently

GST Tax Exemption Has Increased, But Not Permanently

One change affecting estate plans under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act is that, for the estates of persons dying after December 31, 2017, and before January 1, 2026, the generation-skipping transfer (GST) tax exemption amount increases to an inflation-adjusted...

Should You Donate Your Car To Charity?

Should You Donate Your Car To Charity?

Donating an old car to a qualified charity may seem like a hassle-free way to dispose of an unneeded vehicle, satisfy your philanthropic desires and enjoy a tax deduction (provided you itemize). But in most cases, it’s not the most tax-efficient strategy....

Got Bitcoin?

Got Bitcoin?

Understand your tax obligations The tax treatment of bitcoin and other “virtual currencies” — also known as “cryptocurrencies” — is widely misunderstood. But if you invest in virtual currency, use it to pay for goods or services, or receive it as payment for goods or...

Tax Topics: 0% Capital Gains, Research CR, Estate Plan Clause

Tax Topics: 0% Capital Gains, Research CR, Estate Plan Clause

Make the Most of the 0% Capital Gains RateIf you’re holding highly appreciated investments, there may be techniques you can use to avoid federal income taxes on the gain. High-income earners pay tax on long-term capital gains at rates of 15% or 20%, plus...

Putting The Brakes On Spending

Putting The Brakes On Spending

Add spendthrift language to a trust to protect assets Despite its name, the purpose of a spendthrift trust isn’t just to protect profligate heirs from themselves. Adding spendthrift language to a trust benefiting one’s heirs can help safeguard assets from...

Tax Cost of Divorce Set to Rise In 2019

Tax Cost of Divorce Set to Rise In 2019

If you’re divorced or in the process of divorcing, be sure you understand how the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) affects the tax treatment of alimony. For most couples, the tax cost of divorce will go up next year.What’s changing?Under current rules, a...

Are you a member of the Sandwich Generation?

If you’re currently taking care of your children and your elderly parents, count yourself among those of the Sandwich Generation. Although it may be personally gratifying to be able to help your parents, it can be a financial burden. How can you best handle the...

Will Congress revive expired tax breaks?

Most of the talk about possible tax legislation this year has focused on either wide-sweeping tax reform or taxes that are part of the Affordable Care Act. But there are a few other potential tax developments for individuals to keep an eye on. Back in December of...

3 midyear tax planning strategies for individuals

In the quest to reduce your tax bill, year end planning can only go so far. Tax-saving strategies take time to implement, so review your options now. Here are three strategies that can be more effective if you begin executing them midyear: 1. Consider your bracket The...

Could the NIIT apply to the sale of your home?

The 3.8% net investment income tax (NIIT), which went into effect in 2013 under the Affordable Care Act, continues to create confusion. One aspect of the NIIT (also known as the Medicare contribution tax) that’s widely misunderstood is its impact on the sale of a...

Why a private annuity is a powerful estate planning tool

Affluent families looking for ways to reduce their gift and estate tax exposure should consider private annuities. Under the right circumstances, a private annuity can generate significant tax savings. A 2013 U.S. Tax Court decision that approved the use of a deferred...

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