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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Q: I have an outstanding loan for my oldest child's college tuition. I've received some credit card offers with lower rates than the existing college loan. Should I take one to pay off the college loan? K.H., Binghamton, N.Y.

Q: We own S corporation shares bought more than 12 months ago at $12 per share that now have a market value of $25 per share. If the shareholder dies, is the basis adjusted to market value at death? T.M., via e-mail

Q: I'm buying rental property with my brother for $425,000. Although we are joint owners with 50 percent ownership rights each, I'm putting $50,000 down, and he is putting down only $30,000. Will I be taxed on more of the rental income? S.S., via e-mail

Q: I liked your recent story on Section 529 college savings plans. (See 11/17/03 issue.) It made me wonder: I'm thinking about going to law school in a few years. Can I set up a Section 529 plan for myself? S.M.R., via e-mail

Parents on your staff face a big-time dilemma if they've got kids approaching the college years: How are they going to pay the ever-increasing tuition bills?

Q: I am a self-employed contractor and take in about $90,000 a year from my business. You said the new maximum expensing allowance is now $100,000, so can I write off the entire cost of a new $30,000 piece of equipment if I buy it in December? M.W., Lynbrook, N.Y.

Frequently, a divorcing couple can't agree on which of them should claim the dependency exemptions for the children. If you can't decide, the court will do it for you. And that could yield the worst possible result for you.

Q: My neighbor went to a retirement planning seminar and talks about a new concept called "split annuities." Are split annuities tax-deferred like regular annuities? J.Z., Mayo, Fla.

Q: I've heard that I might pay tax on Social Security benefits because of the tax-free income earned by my IRAs and Roth IRAs. How can this be true? R.S., Eagle, Colo.

In 2001, President Bush's tax cuts increased the amount of your estate that is exempt from federal estate taxes to an even $1 million. As part of that law, the estate-tax exemption level will jump again, this time to $1.5 million, starting Jan. 1, 2004.

With Jan. 1 approaching, you need to once again adjust your estate plan to reflect the higher exemption level. The first three pages of this issue provide strategies to help you take full advantage of the new law. It lays out different strategies for people with medium-size estates, larger estates and valuable homes. Read on, then meet with your estate-planning professional.
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