Focus

Showing 17–32 of 325 results

  • Changes to Form W-4: What employers need to know

    June / July 2020
    Newsletter: Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 433

    Abstract: The 2020 version of Form W-4 (the Employee Withholding Certificate) is designed both to be more accurate and reflect changes from the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA). For instance, the new form eliminated the line where employees enter the number of allowances because it was tied to personal exemptions, which the TCJA suspended. This article explains what employers should know about these changes to help smooth the way for their employees.

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  • CARES Act relief provisions benefitting individuals

    June / July 2020
    Newsletter: Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 647

    Abstract: Many Americans are familiar with the “Economic Impact Payments” for individuals provided by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. But they may be less familiar with other provisions of the CARES Act intended to provide much-needed financial relief. This article highlights several provisions of the act that are potentially useful to individuals.

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  • Saving for retirement gets a boost from the SECURE Act

    June / July 2020
    Newsletter: Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 888

    Abstract: The 2019 SECURE — short for Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement — Act makes it easier for many people to save for retirement. This article provides an overview of some of the provisions that could affect individuals’ retirement planning in beneficial ways, such as pushing back the age at which individuals must begin taking required minimum distributions (RMDs) from their retirement plans and mandating employers to allow part-time employees to enroll in their 401(k) plans, with certain restrictions. A sidebar explains provisions of the act that focus on educational savings accounts and student loans.

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  • What can the CARES Act’s tax provisions do for your business?

    June / July 2020
    Newsletter: Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 700

    Abstract: Tax breaks, including many provisions of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, are one set of tools that can help businesses rebuild their financial health after the economic downturn resulting from the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. This article looks at several provisions designed to aid businesses, including a new refundable credit against payroll tax and increased business interest deductions.

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  • The lowdown on qualified charitable distributions

    April / May 2020
    Newsletter: Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 453

    Abstract: Qualified charitable distributions (QCDs) can help people use their required minimum distributions (RMDs) to support worthwhile organizations while excluding the amounts from their taxable income. This article explains the advantages of doing so, including the ability to stay under various income-based phaseouts and thresholds that can reduce other tax benefits or trigger certain taxes. The article lists the rules for QCDs, including recent changes to the age requirements.

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  • How to make sure your family business stays in good hands

    April / May 2020
    Newsletter: Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 619

    Abstract: Determining the right successor for a family business can be more complex than it first appears. When the time comes to transition ownership and management to a chosen successor, what if that successor isn’t ready or able to meet the challenges? This article points out that obtaining the advice of a trusted advisor or business consultant might be a first step to smoothing the transition. In addition, it offers guidance to help business owners maintain goodwill, fairness and clear thinking while working out succession problems.

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  • Increase lease accounting transparency – Implementing the updated accounting rules for leases

    April / May 2020
    Newsletter: Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 648

    Abstract: In late 2019, the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) postponed the implementation date for its updated rules for leases, Accounting Standards Update (ASU) No. 2016-02, Leases (Topic 842), by a year for most nonpublic and nonprofit organizations. While most of these organizations won’t have to implement the changes until 2021, it’s a good idea to begin now. This article explains the steps organizations should take to ensure compliance, such as identifying all leases to pinpoint the information they’ll need to disclose and providing expanded disclosures on the nature of the leases — including related-party lease transactions, as well as finance and operating lease costs.

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  • The best of both worlds? A new option for long-term care insurance

    April / May 2020
    Newsletter: Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 835

    Abstract: Premiums for traditional long-term care insurance often run thousands of dollars per year per person. Individuals are forced to weigh this cost against the likelihood that they may end up not tapping into their policies. This article discusses a new hybrid life and long-term care policy that might address the concerns with traditional long-term care coverage. It combines life and long-term care insurance, typically by adding a long-term care rider to a traditional life insurance policy — thus reducing the “use it or lose it” risk of traditional long-term care policies. A sidebar offers some other hybrid policy benefits and caveats.

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  • How rental real estate businesses can sail into a tax deduction safe harbor

    February / March 2020
    Newsletter: Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 432

    Abstract: Revenue Procedure 2019-38, issued by the IRS in 2019, creates a safe harbor permitting certain interests in rental real estate to qualify for the Section 199A qualified business income (QBI) deduction. This article explains what criteria taxpayers must meet to treat their rental real estate enterprises as businesses. It also notes that even an interest in a real estate property that fails to meet the safe harbor requirements may still be treated as a trade or business for the Sec. 199A deduction if it is rented or licensed to a trade or business conducted by the individual or relevant pass-through entity.

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  • Save income taxes by including nongrantor trusts in your estate plan

    February / March 2020
    Newsletter: Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 588

    Abstract: Estate planning strategies vary as new rules change the playing field. Now that fewer taxpayers are likely to be subject to federal gift and estate tax, many families are focusing more on income tax strategies in their estate plans. This article discusses one such strategy — including one or more nongrantor trusts to help reduce any negative tax impact of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act’s (TCJA’s) itemized deduction limitations. The article uses a hypothetical example to show how using a nongrantor trust has the potential to help increase deductions.

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  • Investing in home renovation – Will yours pay off?

    February / March 2020
    Newsletter: Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 643

    Abstract: The potential resale value of, say, a kitchen or bath redo often is one consideration when deciding how to allocate a renovation budget. This article discusses some renovation projects that typically return most of their investment, such as garage door replacements and manufactured stone veneers. The article points out that ensuring that basic plumbing, roofing and other systems are in good working order also is critical in attracting buyers. And it offers some tips for gaining the most from a remodeling project.

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  • New overtime pay rules for 2020

    February / March 2020
    Newsletter: Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 774

    Abstract: The new rules governing overtime pay, which the Department of Labor (DOL) announced in September 2019, carry an effective date of January 1, 2020. The changes are significant, so it’s important for businesses to ensure compliance with them. This article notes the biggest change, which is the increase in the earnings threshold required to exempt many executive, administrative and professional employees from the minimum wage and overtime requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). The article explains which businesses will be most affected and how to claim an exemption from overtime regulations for specific types of employees. A sidebar suggests that judicious use of overtime is one strategy for keeping budgets in check.

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  • Don’t let your tax obligations for statutory employees fall through the cracks

    Year End 2019
    Newsletter: Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 428

    Abstract: Many businesses work with outside contractors. Statutory employees are in a category that falls somewhere between employee and independent contractor. Whether workers are considered statutory employees can have a significant impact on certain tax obligations. This article explains the criteria the IRS uses to classify employees as statutory and discusses the potential tax impact for employers.

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  • Feast or famine: Protecting a windfall

    Year End 2019
    Newsletter: Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 551

    Abstract: Receiving an inheritance, a legal settlement or prize winnings may seem wonderful, but it can also raise new problems. It’s important for recipients to use smart strategies that will help ensure the money continues to grow over the long term. This article offers some guidelines and advice for recipients that will help them avoid potential traps and pitfalls. It suggests that it’s a good idea to determine the tax obligations on the amount received, pay off any debt and increase savings before spending the money. The article points out that, with care, thought and planning, a windfall can help provide financial security.

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  • Remote control – State sales tax guidelines for remote sellers

    Year End 2019
    Newsletter: Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 612

    Abstract: As Internet commerce increases, the number of states imposing sales and use tax on remote sellers continues to grow. The actions of many states are a response to the June 2018 U.S. Supreme Court decision in South Dakota v. Wayfair, ruling that states may collect sales or use taxes from businesses that lack a physical presence within the state. This article notes that businesses should be aware of these changing state and local tax laws, taking a look at some of the pertinent issues — including determining nexus and the importance of monitoring and compliance.

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  • Don’t wait! Take these last-minute steps now to reduce your 2019 tax bill

    Year End 2019
    Newsletter: Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 974

    Abstract: As the year draws to a close, there’s still time for individuals to effectively reduce their tax bills. This article offers some useful strategies for year-end tax planning. It also suggests several steps individuals can take, including grouping deductible expenses together and making contributions to employer-sponsored retirement plans, that can help reduce their tax bill. A sidebar explains that it’s important for employees who have Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) to keep tabs on their FSA balances at the end of the year so as to avoid forfeiting money.

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