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.

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Instead of grabbing your maximum first-year depreciation write-off (as described above), you can choose another route: Mix and match depreciation methods to claim a smaller first-year depreciation write-off and thereby fine-tune your business's 2003 taxable income level.

Q: I run two sole proprietorships out of my house. Do I need to use separate rooms for each business if I want to claim home-office deductions? W.D., Smyrna, Ga.

Before wrapping up your business tax return, rack your brain (and your records) to make sure you haven't missed any juicy write-offs.

March 15 isn't just the deadline for corporations to file 2003 calendar-year income tax returns. It's also the deadline for calendar-year C corporations to switch to S corporation status for 2004.

1. Self-employed? Deduct full health premium

Finally, self-employed people can write off 100 percent of their health insurance premiums (up from 70 percent in 2002).

Note:

You can reap significant additional tax savings by making your spouse an employee of your sole proprietorship or single-member LLC and setting up a medical expense reimbursement plan. That strategy could let you deduct all your family's health costs (including uninsured expenses) on Schedule C, plus it could lower your self-employment tax bill.

If you receive a phone call from someone who asks for personal financial data and claims to be from a federal agency, such as the IRS, ask that person to put the request in writing.

Millions of taxpayers now file their tax returns via the Web, and the number is likely to grow. Should you join the crowd?

If you and other co-owners operate your business as a multimember LLC, you may already know to file a partnership return on Form 1065. Each owner is treated as a partner for federal income tax purposes, so each receives a Schedule K-1 with his or her share of the LLC's 2003 business income, deductions and credits. You report those figures on your 2003 personal return.

If you took out a home-equity loan last year and injected the resulting cash into your pass-through business (sole proprietorship, S corps, partnership or LLC), you can typically deduct the related in-terest expense. But don't report the interest as an itemized deduction on your Schedule A.

If you run your business as a husband/wife partnership, you're forced to fill out a complicated Form 1065 (U.S. Return of Partnership Income) every year. But if you live in one of the nine "community property" states (see list at left), we have good news for you

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