Berdon Blogs

TAX TALK: TCJA and Personal Exemptions, Standard Deductions, and the Child Credit

Posted by Michael Eagan, J.D., LL.M. on Jan 22, 2018 11:40:00 AM

Under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA), individual income tax rates generally go down for 2018 through 2025. But that doesn’t necessarily mean your income tax liability will go down. The TCJA also makes a lot of changes to tax breaks for individuals, reducing or eliminating some while expanding others. The total impact of all of these changes is what will ultimately determine whether you see reduced taxes. One interrelated group of changes affecting many taxpayers are those to personal exemptions, standard deductions and the child credit.

Personal Exemptions

For 2017, taxpayers can claim a personal exemption of $4,050 each for themselves, their spouses, and any dependents. For families with children and/or other dependents, such as elderly parents, these exemptions can really add up.

Read More

Topics: TAX TALK

TAX TALK: 401(k) Contribution Limit Increases for 2018; Most Others Remain Stagnant

Posted by Michael Eagan, J.D., LL.M. on Jan 15, 2018 9:20:00 AM

Retirement plan contribution limits are indexed for inflation, but with inflation remaining low, most of the limits remain unchanged for 2018.  One piece of good news for taxpayers who’re already maxing out their contributions is that the 401(k) limit has gone up by $500. The only other limit that has increased from the 2017 level is for contributions to defined contribution plans, which has gone up by $1,000.

Read More

Topics: TAX TALK

TAX TALK: TCJA Temporarily Expands Bonus Depreciation

Posted by Michael Eagan, J.D., LL.M. on Jan 8, 2018 7:00:00 AM

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) enhances some tax breaks for businesses while reducing or eliminating others. One break it enhances — temporarily — is bonus depreciation. While most TCJA provisions go into effect for the 2018 tax year, you might be able to benefit from the bonus depreciation enhancements when you file your 2017 tax return.

Read More

Topics: TAX TALK

TAX TALK: Tax Cuts and Jobs Act - Key Provisions Impacting Individuals

Posted by Michael Eagan, J.D., LL.M. on Jan 2, 2018 10:43:09 AM

On December 20, 2017 Congress completed passage of the largest federal tax reform law in more than 30 years. Commonly called the “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act” (TCJA), the new law means substantial changes for individual taxpayers.

The following is a brief overview of some of the most significant provisions. Except where noted, these changes are effective for tax years beginning after December 31, 2017, and before January 1, 2026.

Read More

Topics: TAX TALK

TAX TALK: What You Need to Know about 2017 Year-End Charitable Giving

Posted by Michael Eagan, J.D., LL.M. on Dec 18, 2017 9:18:00 AM

Here are some important considerations to keep in mind this year to ensure you receive the tax benefits you desire.

Read More

Topics: TAX TALK

TAX TALK: First Quarter 2018 Deadlines for Businesses and Other Employers

Posted by Michael Eagan, J.D., LL.M. on Dec 11, 2017 9:18:00 AM

Here are some of the key tax-related deadlines affecting businesses and other employers during the first quarter of 2018.  Keep in mind that this list isn’t all-inclusive, so there may be additional deadlines that apply to you. Contact us to ensure you’re meeting all applicable deadlines and to learn more about the filing requirements.

January 31

  • File 2017 Forms W-2, “Wage and Tax Statement,” with the Social Security Administration and provide copies to your employees.
  • Provide copies of 2017 Forms 1099-MISC, “Miscellaneous Income,” to recipients of income from your business where required.
  • File 2017 Forms 1099-MISC reporting nonemployee compensation payments in Box 7 with the IRS.
Read More

Topics: TAX TALK

TAX TALK: Higher-Bracket Taxpayers can Take Advantage of 0% Long-Term Gains Rate

Posted by Michael Eagan, J.D., LL.M. on Dec 4, 2017 9:18:00 AM

We’re in the giving season, and if making financial gifts to your loved ones is part of your plans — or if you’d simply like to reduce your capital gains tax — consider giving appreciated stock instead of cash this year. Doing so might allow you to eliminate all federal tax liability on the appreciation, or at least significantly reduce it.

Leveraging Lower Rates

Investors generally are subject to a 15% tax rate on their long-term capital gains (20% if they’re in the top ordinary income tax bracket of 39.6%). But the long-term capital gains rate is 0% for gain that would be taxed at 10% or 15% based on the taxpayer’s ordinary-income rate.

Read More

Topics: TAX TALK

TAX TALK: RMDs May Be On your Year End to-do List

Posted by Michael Eagan, J.D., LL.M. on Nov 27, 2017 9:20:00 AM

As the end of the year approaches, for taxpayers “of a certain age” with a tax-advantaged retirement account, as well as younger taxpayers who’ve inherited such an account, there may be one more thing that’s critical on your year end to do list: Take required minimum distributions (RMDs).

Risking a Huge Penalty

After you reach age 70½, you generally must take annual RMDs from your:

  • IRAs (except Roth IRAs), and
  • Defined contribution plans, such as 401(k) plans (unless you’re still an employee and not a 5%-or-greater shareholder of the employer sponsoring the plan).
Read More

Topics: TAX TALK

TAX TALK: Accelerating Your Property Tax Payment into 2017 May Be Especially Beneficial

Posted by Michael Eagan, J.D., LL.M. on Nov 20, 2017 9:17:00 AM

Accelerating deductible expenses, such as property tax on your home, into the current year typically is a good idea. Why? It will defer tax, which usually is beneficial. Prepaying property tax may be especially beneficial this year, because proposed tax legislation might reduce or eliminate the benefit of the property tax deduction beginning in 2018.

Proposed Changes

The initial version of the House tax bill would cap the property tax deduction for individuals at $10,000. The initial version of the Senate tax bill would eliminate the property tax deduction for individuals altogether.

Read More

Topics: TAX TALK

TAX TALK: 2017 Might be Your Last Chance to Hire Veterans and Claim a Tax Credit

Posted by Michael Eagan, J.D., LL.M. on Nov 13, 2017 11:40:00 AM

With Veterans Day just over, it’s an especially good time to think about ways we can support our veterans.  One way for businesses is to hire them. The Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) can help businesses do just that, but it may not be available for hires made after this year.

Read More

Topics: TAX TALK

About Berdon Blogs

Our experts examine the latest trends, economics, business conditions and industry issues to provide timely information you need to maximize your tax advantages and meet your financial goals.

SALT TALK: Hear an insider’s perspective on the business issues, legislative updates in state and local tax, and tax aspects behind today’s headlines.

T&E TALK: Gain insights into how changes in tax laws, shifts in the financial markets, and regulatory concerns will impact assets and affect preserving and transferring wealth.

TAX TALK: Get an all-inclusive perspective on regulatory changes, industry issues, and trends from our team of multidisciplinary tax professionals – many of whom also hold J.D. and LL.M degrees.

Subscribe to Berdon Blogs

Recent Posts