Small Business Tax Strategies

Suppose your recently graduated child is looking to buy a starter home. You’d like to help out but you don’t have enough liquidity. Strategy: Take some money out of your IRA.

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The Section 529 plan is a popular way for parents and grandparents to provide college funding for the younger generation. But suppose you’re the one thinking about college for the first time or going back to school. Why not set up a 529 plan for yourself?

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Suppose your main place of business is your principal residence and you store valuables in a home office or a separate structure. Strategy: Install a home security system for the business part of the home.

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Are you and your employees adequately protected in the event of a long-term illness? Strategy: Provide long-term care (LTC) insurance as a company-paid fringe benefit for employees (including yourself).

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The “portability” provision in the federal estate tax provides greater flexibility in estate tax planning for married couples. Alert: The IRS has issued new final regulations pertaining to the portability provision.

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Giving lifetime gifts to family members is a tried-and-true method for reducing your taxable estate. The problem? You have to give up control over the assets. Strategy: Set up a Crummey trust.

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Q. My main home is a shore house that declined in value after Sandy. If I sell it, can I claim a loss?

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Q. I work for a nonprofit organization. Can I deduct home office expenses?

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Q. I’ve just received an offer for prepaid funeral expenses. Can I deduct the cost?

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In a recent case, a retired police detective claimed that a portion of his vacation time pay had accrued under a workers’ compensation law while he was on temporary disability leave, so it should be tax free. But the Tax Court had other ideas.

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