Small Business Tax

Section 179 vehicles should be a key part of your small business tax deduction strategies. Can Section 179 property fit in with your business tax strategies?

Let Business Management Daily help you get each and every rental property depreciation credit and business tax deduction you’re entitled to.

Q. I found some HH Savings Bonds from years ago. Do I still owe income tax if I cash them in now?

At tax return time, you must “net” your capital gains and losses for the year. Any net long-term gain is taxed at a maximum 15% rate. Any excess loss can offset up to $3,000 of ordinary income. Strategy: Sell securities at year-end with an eye on taxes.

To determine the value of your business inventory at year-end, you can use either the first in, first out (FIFO) method or the last in, first out (LIFO) method. Strategy: Switch to the LIFO method if the costs of goods are rising or you’ve had a high-income year. The change can result in a larger deduction for the cost of goods sold and a lower taxable income for your company.

If H1N1 flu threatens to shut down businesses nationwide, employers are going to need contingency plans to make sure they keep running. Flexible work schedules, temporary shutdowns and telework can all help—but all have unexpected wage-and-hour implications. Here’s guidance from the Department of Labor on how to handle these tricky issues.

You can deduct your expenses related to your vacation home's rental activity to offset the rental income. You may even be able to claim an overall tax loss for the year. But you can’t claim a tax loss if your personal use exceeds the greater of 14 days or 10% of the days the home is rented out. Tax strategy: Take a winter break straddling this year and next year ...

If you receive gifts of Series EE Savings Bonds in a child’s name, stash them away for a rainy day. There’s no tax to pay on the accrued interest in the bonds until your child cashes them in or they mature ... unless you choose otherwise. Strategy: Elect to report the EE Bond interest annually. Here's why ...

Q. My wife works part time as a teacher’s aide in an elementary school. Can she deduct any of her personal expenses for school as a miscellaneous itemized deduction?

Test your knowledge of recent trends in employment law, comp & benefits and other HR issues with our monthly mini-quiz ...

If you have a flexible spending account (FSA) at work to pay for health care and/or dependent care expenses, remeber that any amount left over at the end of the year is forfeited, under the “use-it-or-lose-it” rule. Strategy: Squeeze every dollar out of your FSA before the year ends. You might even move up some nonemergency medical visits from 2010 to 2009.

Maybe you’ve acquired separate companies or you split off a subsidiary from your initial operation. In either event, you own two or more business entities on the books. Potential problem: If some of the employees work for more than one of the companies, you could be paying more employment tax than required. Strategy: Assign a “common paymaster” for payroll matters.