Q & A: How Do I Set Up a Retirement Plan for Employees of My Small Business?

  • August 2, 2010

Many small employers want to offer their employees the opportunity to save for retirement but are unsure of how to go about setting up a retirement plan. In this article, we'll explore three options that are widely used by small businesses: payroll deduction IRAs, SEP plans, and SIMPLE IRAs.

Congress Readies Enhanced Small Business Tax Bill

  • August 2, 2010

A package of small business tax incentives, as part of the larger Small Business Jobs Act of 2010 (H.R. 5297) has been slowly making its way through Congress over the past several months. However, on July 29 members of the Senate effectively blocked a final vote on the H.R. 5297, pushing the prospects for passage of bill by both chambers of Congress into September (when Congress returns from its August recess).

Preparing for the Possible Return of Pre-EGTRRA Individual Tax Rates

  • August 2, 2010

In less than six months, unless Congress acts, the individual marginal income tax rate reductions under the Economic Growth and Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2001 (EGTRRA) will expire. While the timetable for addressing the EGTRRA tax cuts is not certain, the approaching sunset of the individual rate reductions, the possibility for their extension, and the fate of the limit on itemized deductions and the personal exemption phase-out will touch all taxpayers. The potential rate change makes tax planning all the more important.

Gifting in 2010 – Planning for Terminally Ill Clients

  • July 29, 2010

It appears unlikely that Congress will pass any transfer tax reform in 2010. As a result, 2010 could be the best of times for gifting by affluent clients. Part I of this article on gifting in 2010 by noted author and planning expert John J. Scroggin considered the multiple factors that encourage making gifts this year. Part II covered select gift planning opportunities available this year. Part III of the article, below, covers 2010 strategies and planning for terminally ill clients.

2Q Update: Important Tax Developments

  • July 8, 2010

The following is a summary of the most important tax developments that have occurred in the past three months that may affect you, your family, your investments or your business.

IRS Releases Guidance for Grandfathering of Health Insurance Plans

  • July 2, 2010

The IRS has issued temporary and proposed guidance under which health insurance plans will be treated as grandfathered under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). Plans that are not grandfathered or that lose their grandfathered status will be subject to new shared responsibility requirements for employers after 2013. The IRS also provided the notice requirements that grandfathered plans must give to participants and beneficiaries.

FAQ: Can I Deduct the Cost Incurred Doing Charitable Work?

  • July 2, 2010

Q. I spend 20 hours every week cooking meals and delivering them to an organization that feeds the hungry and homeless. Am I entitled to a deduction for my time and the food I pay for out of my own money?

Brace Yourself for a Sea of Change in the Tax Law

  • July 2, 2010

A number of tax law changes are making their way through Congress, and many more on the way. These changes will affect both individual and business taxpayers alike. In 2010, it is expected that Congress will address the federal estate tax, and is currently working on small business and jobs "relief," as well as an extension of popular, but temporary tax incentives that expired at the end of 2009. This article provides a brief overview of what taxpayers can expect this year.

The IRS Initiates Project to Review 401(k) Plan Compliance

  • June 21, 2010

According to the IRS web site - 401(k) plans represent the largest retirement plan market segment and have a significant impact on the health of the private retirement system in America. Employee Plans Examinations, previously conducted a baseline study of 79 market segments, and the findings indicated that 401(k) plans are by far the most non-compliant plan type in the retirement plan universe. In an effort to improve plan compliance the IRS is sending a questionnaire to 1,200 randomly selected 401(k) sponsors that filed a form 5500 in 2007. The questionnaires were designed to assess compliance with retirement plan regulations. Plan sponsors who receive a letter will complete the Questionnaire by accessing a special Web site.