Author Archives: mk4lahrmer

DIRTY DOZEN TAX SCAMS: 2020 EDITION

Tax ScamsThe “Dirty Dozen” is a list of common tax scams that target taxpayers. Compiled and issued annually every year by the IRS, this year it includes many aggressive and evolving schemes related to coronavirus tax relief, including Economic Impact Payments. The criminals behind these bogus schemes view everyone as potentially easy prey and everyone should be on guard, especially vulnerable populations such as the elderly. Continue reading

Q & A: RETURNING AN ECONOMIC IMPACT PAYMENT

Stimulus PaymentAccording to the Treasury Department, more than 159 million individuals have already received their Economic Impact Payments; however, a recent audit found that the IRS sent $1.4 billion in stimulus checks to deceased individuals. As such, many people may have received a payment for a deceased family member or another taxpayer who is not eligible to receive a payment and may have questions about what to do. Here are some answers: Continue reading

JULY 15 DEADLINE FOR REPORTING FOREIGN INCOME

CheckIf you live or work outside the United States, you generally must file and pay your tax in the same way as people living in the U.S. This includes people with dual citizenship. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, people who live and work abroad have until Wednesday, July 15, 2020, to file their 2019 federal income tax return and pay any tax due. The deadline is normally June 15. Continue reading

PAYING OFF DEBT THE SMART WAY

Debt FreeWith a potential economic downturn in the wings due to COVID-19, being debt-free is a worthwhile goal. Unfortunately, between mortgages, car loans, credit cards, and student loans, for most people – especially those of pre-retirement age – this is unrealistic. Instead, it’s better to start by focusing on managing debt. When you handle debt wisely, you won’t have to shell out every cent of your hard-earned money to your lender or feel like you’re always on the verge of bankruptcy. Continue reading

AVOID THESE COMMON ERRORS WHEN FILING A TAX RETURN

Tax ReturnWhen filing a tax return, mistakes such as the common errors listed below can result in a processing delay – and increase the amount of time it takes to receive a tax refund. Using a reputable tax preparer such as a certified public accountant, enrolled agent or another knowledgeable tax professional is usually the best way to avoid this. With this in mind, here are eight of the most common errors taxpayers make when filing their returns: Continue reading

PREPARING AN EFFECTIVE BUSINESS PLAN

Business PlanA business plan is a valuable tool whether you’re seeking additional financing for an existing business, starting a new company, or analyzing a new market. Think of it as your blueprint for success. Not only will it clarify your business vision and goals, but it will also force you to gain a thorough understanding of how resources (financial and human) will be used to carry out that vision and goals. Continue reading

PASS ON WEALTH TO HEIRS USING THESE STRATEGIES

HeirsIndividuals with significant assets who want to transfer wealth to heirs tax-free, as well as minimize estate taxes, should take advantage of proven tax strategies such as gifting and direct payments to educational institutions; however low interest rates and a volatile stock market are creating additional opportunities. Let’s take a look at some of the strategies available: Continue reading

LOAN FORGIVENESS UNDER THE PAYCHECK PROTECTION PLAN

Paycheck Protection ProgramAs part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, signed into law March 27, many small business owners were able to apply for – and receive – a loan of up to $10 million under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). Businesses – including nonprofits, veterans’ organizations, Tribal entities, self-employed individuals, sole proprietorships, and independent contractors – that were in operation on February 15 and that have 500 or fewer employees are eligible for the PPP loans. If the loan proceeds are used as specified, business owners may apply to have the loan forgiven. Continue reading