The recently enacted Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) is a sweeping tax package. Here's a look at some of the more important elements of the new law that have an impact on individuals.
You still have time to put yourself in the best tax position possible before the clock strikes midnight on New Year's Eve. Follow these five tips and you won't be sorry when tax season rolls around.
There are more than a dozen variations of the information return known as Form 1099. Most are specific to certain industries. But nearly every company, large or small, has to issue Form 1099-MISC.
We hope the Thanksgiving holiday was a wonderful time for you and your loved ones. There’s usually plenty of food, football, and shopping. While Americans love to snatch up deals on Black Friday and Cyber Monday, did you know there’s another shopping event that is larger than these two days combined?
You can save more for retirement next year using tax-advantaged accounts, thanks to a boost in the maximum 401(k) contribution rate by the IRS. The maximum rate increases by $500 to $18,500, which is the first increase in three years.
The IRS and the Social Security Administration published some inflation-adjusted numbers for retirement contributions and gifts for 2018. You can use this information as you begin your tax and financial planning for the coming year.
Taxpayers often overlook and underreport charitable contributions on their tax returns.
This October, we experienced more of the same with the market ticking upward and achieving new all-time highs. In this environment, it’s important to remember that we haven’t seen some typical market moves in quite some time—namely a correction.
Earlier this year, hackers were able to breach the security of Equifax, one of the three national credit reporting agencies. More than 143 million Americans – nearly half the entire country – were exposed to the attack, and may have had their personal information stolen (including names and birthdates, and Social Security and driver’s license numbers). Equifax is still determining exactly whose data has been exposed. While you wait to find out, it’s worth taking a few proactive steps to make sure your info isn’t misused by hackers.
As the year draws to a close, there are several tax-saving ideas you should consider. Use this checklist to make sure you don’t miss an opportunity before the year is out.
Donations are a great way to give to a deserving charity, and they also give back in the form of a tax deduction. Unfortunately, charitable donations are under scrutiny by the IRS, and many donations without adequate documentation are being rejected.
Congratulations to Teri Yoder, Whitcomb & Hess Accounting Associate, for passing the Uniform CPA Examination in September!
In August, we were pleased to welcome two new Investment Advisors, Tim Hilterman, CFP®, and Jake Buckwalter, to our Investment Advisory Team at Whitcomb & Hess.
Social Security recipients will receive a 2% increase in their benefit in 2018.
On September 7, 2017, the credit monitoring company Equifax announced a “cybersecurity incident” involving unauthorized access to consumer information affecting up to 143 million customers.
As we ease into fall, let’s review the maximum contribution limits for Retirement Plans for 2017.
What is usually a quieter summer period was rudely interrupted by more geo-political drama and extreme weather events. Nevertheless, overall good news in economic data from Europe, UK, Japan, and Brazil helped markets continue to creep up. At the time of this publication, US Stocks are rallying to all-time highs. The S&P 500 Index (large US companies) is up 14.24% YTD while international holdings are up 19.17% according to the MSCI World ex-USA index.
Every year taxpayers are hit with tax surprises that could be avoided if they just knew the rules. Here are three big ones that are easy to avoid with some simple planning.
After disaster strikes, people often want to help those in need. Unfortunately, this is also when fake charities pop up. The IRS recently reported an uptick in emerging charity scams since hurricanes Harvey, Irma and others made landfall.
As September comes to a close, it’s interesting to look at a few market proverbs compared with how markets have been performing. “Sell in May and go away” refers to the strategy of booking profits at the end of May each year and waiting out a traditionally down time in the market. If you subscribed to this strategy in 2017, you would have missed out on the S&P 500 rising more than 4% over the summer (June 1 – Sept 29).
The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is a tool that students use to apply for more than $120 billion in federal funds. Unfortunately, each year many students miss out.
If you have an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) rather than a Social Security number (SSN) you may need to take action or you’ll be unable to file a tax return for 2017.
Section 179 expensing can be a very powerful tax-planning tool for small- and medium-sized businesses acquiring capital assets. While it doesn’t change the amount of depreciation you can take over the life of a capital purchase, it can change
The tuition and fees deduction expired last year. Fortunately, you may still be able to benefit from other education tax benefits, including the American Opportunity Tax Credit (AOTC) and the Lifetime Learning Credit.
As August comes to a close, school is back in session, football has returned, the leaves are starting to turn, and we look back on what has been an interesting month in the markets. The August market saw its share of volatility, fueled early on by the threats and tension from North Korea. As tensions eased, and with the help of potential tax cuts and decent economic data, markets were able to recoup most of the month’s initial losses.
Is a worker an independent contractor or an employee? As an employer, getting this wrong could land you with an IRS audit and cost you plenty in many other ways. Here’s what you should know:
There are nearly 1,000 different tax forms used by the IRS to report tax obligations. It’s no wonder the IRS faces thousands of tax returns with errors each year. Here are some of the most common:
Congress decided not to extend this $4,000 deduction for 2017, leaving many parents worried that college will now be more expensive. However, Congress left in place two popular education credits that may offer a more valuable tax break:
If you changed your name for any reason during the past year, you will need to file Form SS-5, Application for a Social Security Card, with the Social Security Administration (SSA) to notify them of the name change before you submit your 2017 tax returns...