Q: I received shares of Prudential stock a few years ago because I had converted a group policy to a personal policy. If I sell the shares now, do I have to pay tax on the full value, even though I still own the insurance policy? A.P., Santa Clara, Calif.
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 experienced unusually high medical expenses in 2003. In addition to my out-of-pocket costs, I contributed $2,500 to my company flexible spending account (FSA) and used up all the funds. Can I count those FSA expenses as deductible medical expenses? J.B., Winslow, Ariz.
C corporations offer better tax treatment for fringe benefits than S corporations. But don't avoid an S corporation election simply because of fringe benefits.
The 2003 tax law spawned dozens of great tax strategies, plus a couple of duds.
One lame concept gaining traction these days: Reduced individual income tax rates make your tax-deferred retirement plan an inferior retirement savings vehicle. Instead, the story goes, you should stash your retirement money in a taxable account at your friendly brokerage firm.
The next time you order checks, have them imprinted with your first initial instead of your first name (e.g., G. Bush), suggests Commercial Law Bulletin.
If parking space is at a premium near your building, you may pay for employees to park their cars in a nearby garage or lot.
If you set up a qualified fringe benefit plan, your company can deduct those parking costs, and the benefit is tax-free to the employees. Unfortunately, your company may pay a pretty penny for its local parking privileges.
File more business tax forms electronically.
IRS shifting jobs from clerical to crackdown.
Educate yourself on Health Savings Accounts.
In a competitive business environment, your company may be hard-pressed to keep up with the Joneses. Often, that requires sinking extra cash into research that may or may not result in profitable products.
Q: I heard that the increased Section 179 allowance goes away in 2004. Is that true? V.C.R., Miami, Fla.
Taxpayers pondering a question, searching for a form or seeking their refund can now go to one place on the IRS Web site: 1040 Central.