Small Business Tax Strategies

In a recent mailing to about 5,000 tax return preparers, the IRS cautioned tax practitioners about using Social Security numbers, expired taxpayer ID numbers or numbers obtained before September 2010.

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The IRS issued new final capitalization regulations late last year. Generally, amounts paid to improve tangible property must be capitalized and depreciated over time, but the regulations provide a unique opportunity.

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Earlier this year, the Tax Court determined that the once-a-year limit on tax-free rollovers applies to all of a taxpayer’s IRAs, not each one separately. This contradicted the previous taxpayer-friendly interpretation of the rules by the IRS.

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If you own a small business operating on a calendar-year basis, now is the time to cash in on tax-saving opportunities while avoiding potential pitfalls.

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Do you remember the gas-guzzler tax from years ago? It hasn’t disappeared completely.

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Q. We’re paying my adult younger sister to watch our children while we work. Can we claim the child care credit?

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According to IRS data, taxpayers reported $9.1 trillion in adjusted gross income for 2012.

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The IRS recently indicated that college athletes won’t be taxed on scholarships if they are treated as employees. But it doesn’t mean that tax-free treatment is automatic for scholarship recipients.

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At this point, no one knows whether Congress will raise the Section 179 deduction or revive bonus depreciation for 2014. Strategy: Make a safe harbor election under the tangible property capitalization regulations.

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Q. My father passed away with about a half million each in his 401(k) and IRAs. Can we convert these to a Roth?

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