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IRS ISSUES NEW UPDATED WITHHOLDING TABLES

One of the most often heard Congressional talking points for the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) was that millions of workers would see an increase in their take home paychecks. To this end, on Thursday, the IRS issued new wage withholding guidelines. The guidelines are needed so employers can calculate how much tax to withhold from employees’ pay. Employees should begin seeing changes in their paychecks by February 15th (or sooner) since it normally takes about a month to update systems....

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IRS Disaster Relief: Relief for Taxpayers Affected by Hurricanes Harvey & Irma

By: Evan Gernant The IRS has published various notices granting tax relief to “affected taxpayers” of hurricanes Harvey, impacting Texas beginning August 25, 2017, and Irma, impacting Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Florida and Georgia just a few weeks later. Affected taxpayers are defined as: Individuals whose principal residence is located in a covered disaster area; Businesses whose principal place of business is located in a covered disaster area; Any relief worker affiliated...

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End-of-Year Tax Planning: How to Lessen Year-End Stress

By Laura Melville We are more than halfway through 2017 – and that means the fourth quarter is already on the horizon. When those final three months of this year arrive, it’s time for your business to focus on planning for 2018 in earnest. Unfortunately, many businesses wait to begin year-end planning until then, as well. Your team will already have its hands full preparing budgets and mapping out your company’s strategies for the following year, and an end-of-year tax preparation-planning...

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Meals and Entertainment: How to Classify Business Expenses for Tax Purposes

By Louann Cassano Whether it’s drinks with a client or dinner during a work trip, meals and entertainment are generally tax-deductible business expenses. However, the size of the allowable write-off depends on the circumstances of the expenditure, including the purpose of the meal or entertainment, who the recipient is and where the expense takes place. If you don’t understand the IRS rules that govern these deductions, you may be tempted to lump all meals and entertainment into...

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10K Plus in Your Foreign Account? File an FBAR to Avoid a Tax Penalty

If you maintain a foreign financial account, which could be a bank account, a mutual fund, a brokerage account, or any other sort of account, that contains a collective value of $10,000, you may be requested by the Bank Secrecy Act to report your account annually to the Department of Treasury through electronic filing. The Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts, FBAR, is a form that must be recorded directly with the office of Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, or FinCEN. Those...

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If You’re Self-Employed, You May Qualify for Insurance Deductions

By Wiss Associate For myriad professionals, becoming an entrepreneur can be a dream come true. Fortunately, health insurance deductions can make maintaining that dream much easier. The Self-Employed Health Insurance Tax Deduction within the Affordable Care Act can assist in lowering your adjust gross income by your payment quantity in premiums on dental, medical, and qualified long-term care insurance for you and your loved ones. For self-employers unable to access a partner’s insurance...

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No Health Coverage? Be Prepared to Pay a Hefty Price

As of now, Obamacare’s individual mandate requests that you purchase health insurance. If you can afford the coverage and refuse to acquire it, a big fee could be headed your way. For the tax year of 2016, the Individual Shared Responsibility fine skyrocketed to 2.5 percent of an individual’s complete household adjusted gross income. However, for the new year and beyond, the amount will stay at 2.5 but the flat fee will be regulated for inflation. For each month you do not have coverage,...

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Tax Benefits of Charitable Giving

By Wiss Associate As the new year is set in motion and you tuck away holiday presents, you may have stumbled upon items that you rarely ever use. Instead of finding additional space for these objects, it can prove to be more beneficial—and profitable—to donate them! If you break down your deductions, a contribution to an eligible philanthropic group can award you a charitable contribution deduction against your income tax.  Normally, you can subtract up to half of your adjusted gross...

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No Phishing! Watch Out for Fake IRS Calls

Have you received a vague phone call from a person claiming to be the IRS, demanding that you cough up money to pay taxes without providing any tangible information? These callers can be relentless and may have ordinary names, persuasive IRS badge numbers, and transform your caller ID to display the words “IRS” across it, as if the actual organization is calling you. Before you panic, this is a scam called phishing, where frauds posing as the IRS make unsolicited communication to...

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Plug in Your Car and Receive a Tax Break

By Wiss Associate Have you recently purchased an electric or hybrid car? If so, you may be eligible for a significant tax credit. Consumers of these energy-friendly vehicles can benefit from a tax break of $2,500 to $7,500, contingent on two essential factors: a car’s battery size and the amount of income taxes you owe during a specific year. Contrariwise, vehicles that have 4 kWh batteries can be eligible for a $2,500 tax benefit. In order to stay informed on the complex rules of...

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