Small Business Tax Strategies

Conservation easements, in which landowners can earn tax deductions for preserving their open land, are rife with abuse, the IRS says. That’s why the IRS is cracking down on these tax goodies for wealthy landowners. The IRS has already fingered 240 taxpayers for audits relating to this tactic, with another potential 100 donors on the hit list.

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The tax law gives you plenty of leeway to deduct contributions within generous limits. In fact, if you’re like most donors, you probably aren’t even aware that any limits exist.

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We can’t overemphasize the need to keep the required records for charitable donations, especially because the IRS is turning up the heat on donation deductions.

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If you donate intellectual property (such as patents) to charity, you can claim a tax deduction for your generosity. But the 2004 tax law restricts what you can deduct.

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Are you ready for a computer upgrade? If the answer is "yes," don’t just toss out your old equipment.

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The IRS just pulled the strings tighter on a tax loophole that it virtually closed last year. The agency issued a ruling that explains the tough new rules limiting deductions for charitable car donations. (IRS Notice 2005-44, Internal Revenue Bulletin 2005-25)

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Instead of donating cash to charity, you might want to give away stock. Just remember to do things the right way.

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Unfortunately, you can’t deduct the value of your time and effort devoted to charity. But that doesn’t mean your charitable deductions are limited to gifts of cash, stock or other assets.

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Are you a rabid fan of your alma mater’s sports teams or the local college powerhouse? There’s a way you can pocket a nifty tax break while showing support for your favorite athletes.

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Do your aging parents live in a home that’s soared in value? Chances are, they’ve paid off the house, so they’re not claiming mortgage interest deductions anymore. Even if they still deduct mortgage interest, they’re probably in a low tax bracket now, so those deductions don’t do much good anyway.

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