Entries by maria

ARE FREQUENT FLYER MILES EVER TAXABLE?

If you recently redeemed frequent yer miles to treat the family to a fun summer vacation or to take your spouse on a romantic getaway, you might assume that there are no tax implications involved. And you’re probably right — but there is a chance your miles could be taxable. Generally, miles awarded by airlines […]

PONDERING THE PURCHASE OF A LIFE INSURANCE POLICY

What, if any, role life insurance should play in your financial plan depends on a variety of factors. These include whether you’re single or married if you have minor children or other dependents, and your net worth and estate planning goals. There’s also the tax impact to consider. Let’s look a little more closely at […]

BAD DEBTS AREN’T ALWAYS BAD NEWS

The IRS defines a business bad debt as “a loss from the worthlessness of a debt that was either created or acquired in a trade or business or closely related to your trade or business when it became partly to totally worthless.”Although no business owner goes out of his or her way to acquire a […]

HANDLE WITH CARE: MUTUAL FUNDS AND TAXES

Many people overlook taxes when planning their mutual fund investments. But you’ve got to handle these valuable assets with care. Here are some tips to consider. AVOID YEAR-END INVESTMENTS Typically, mutual funds distribute accumulated dividends and capital gains toward the end of the year. But don’t fall for the common misconception that investing in a […]

3 STRATEGIES FOR HANDLING ESTIMATED TAX PAYMENTS

In today’s economy, many individuals are self-employed. Others generate income from interest, rent or dividends. If these circumstances sound familiar, you might be at risk of penalties if you don’t pay enough tax during the year through estimated tax payments and withholding. Here are three strategies to help avoid underpayment penalties: 1. Know the minimum […]

SHOULD YOU CHANGE YOUR BUSINESS — OR TRANSFORM IT?

As its market and technological needs evolve, every company needs to change. There’s even a formal term for the undertaking:“change management.” From an operational standpoint, change involves opening up the hood and switching out old engine parts for new ones. Even if it affects the business as a whole, change means focusing on specific areas […]

WILLS AND LIVING TRUSTS: ESTATE PLANNING IMPERATIVES

Well-crafted, up-to-date estate planning documents are imperative for everyone. They also can help ease the burdens on your family during a di cult time. Two important examples: wills and living trusts. THE WILL A will is a legal document that arranges for the distribution of your property after you die and allows you to designate […]

HOW TO STEER CLEAR OF TAX ISSUES RELATED TO SHAREHOLDER LOANS

Owners occasionally need to borrow funds from their businesses. If your business is structured as a corporation and it has extra cash on hand, a shareholder loan can be a convenient and low-cost option — but it’s important to treat the transaction as a bona de loan. If you don’t, the IRS may claim you […]

5 KEYS TO DISASTER PLANNING FOR INDIVIDUALS

Disaster planning is usually associated with businesses. But individuals need to prepare for worst-case scenarios, as well. Unfortunately, the topic can seem a little overwhelming. To help simplify matters, here are ve keys to disaster planning that everyone should consider: 1. Insurance. Start with your homeowners’ coverage. Make sure your policy covers flood, wind and […]

UNDERSTANDING THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN HEALTH CARE ACCOUNTS

Health care costs continue to be in the news and on everyone’s mind. As a result, tax-friendly ways to pay for these expenses are very much in play for many people. The three primary players, so to speak, are Health Savings Accounts (HSAs), Flexible Spending Arrangements (FSAs) and Health Reimbursement Arrangements (HRAs). All provide opportunities […]