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Tag: CPA in Downers Grove

Tax Tips for Foreign Taxpayers

If you are living or working 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. In addition, U.S. taxpayers with foreign accounts exceeding certain thresholds may be required to file Form FinCen114, known as the “FBAR” as well as Form 8938, also referred to as “FATCA.” Note: FBAR is not a tax form, but is due to […]

What Income is Taxable?

Are you wondering if there’s a hard and fast rule about what income is taxable and what income is not taxable? The quick answer is that all income is taxable unless the law specifically excludes it. But as you might have guessed, there’s more to it than that. Taxable income includes any money you receive, such as wages and tips, but it can also include non-cash income from property or services. For example, both parties […]

Updated Withholding Tables for 2018

Updated income-tax withholding tables have been released for 2018 reflecting changes made by the tax reform legislation enacted last month. The updated withholding information, available on IRS.gov, shows the new rates for employers to use during 2018. Employers should begin using the 2018 withholding tables as soon as possible, but not later than February 15, 2018. They should continue to use the 2017 withholding tables until implementing the 2018 withholding tables. Many employees will begin […]

Five Tax Breaks that Survived Tax Reform

Recent tax reform legislation affected many provisions in the tax code. Many were modified, either permanently or temporarily, while some were repealed entirely. Here are five that survived. 1. Mortgage Interest Deduction While the House bill repealed the mortgage interest deduction, the final version of the act retained it, albeit with modifications. First is that the allowed interest deduction is limited to mortgage principal of $750,000 on new homes (i.e., new ownership). For prior tax […]

Donating a Car to Charity

If you donated a car to a qualified charitable organization in 2017 and intend to claim a deduction, you should be aware of the special rules that apply to vehicle donations. Note: You can deduct contributions to a charity only if you itemize deductions using Schedule A of Form 1040. Charities typically sell donated vehicles. If the vehicle is sold by the charitable organization you donated it to, the deduction claimed by the donor (you) and […]

IRS Dirty Dozen Tax Scams for 2016

Compiled annually by the IRS, the “Dirty Dozen” is a list of common scams taxpayers may encounter in the coming months. While many of these scams peak during the tax filing season, they may be encountered at any time during the year. Here is this year’s list: 1. Identity Theft Tax-related identity theft occurs when someone uses your stolen Social Security number to file a tax return claiming a fraudulent refund. Taxpayers should use caution […]

Charitable Giving Forecast to Grow in 2014

According to a report on charitable giving released in May 2014 by a leading forecast organization, Atlas of Giving, the U.S. is likely to see more than a 7% growth in charitable donations in 2014 compared to 2013. Atlas of Giving provides a monthly estimate of charitable giving by sector, source, and state. In 2013, Americans set a record. Fueled largely by significant gains in stock prices, charitable giving in the U.S. increased 13% in […]

An Introduction to Split-Dollar Life Insurance

Contrary to what you may think, split-dollar life insurance is not an insurance policy, at least not in the classic sense. It is a type of arrangement that allows two parties, typically an employer and an employee, to split life insurance protection costs and benefits. The premium payments, rights of ownership, and proceeds payable on the death of the insured are often split between the company and a key employee. In many situations, however, the […]

Small Employers Should Check Out the Health Care Tax Credit

New and existing small employers who do not yet benefit from the Small Business Health Care Tax Credit should look into whether the credit can help them provide insurance to their employees. For tax years beginning in 2014 and after, the maximum credit is 50 percent of premiums paid for small business employers, and 35 percent of premiums paid for tax-exempt small employers, such as charities. Beginning in 2014, a small employer may qualify for […]

Top Four Year-End IRA Reminders

Individual Retirement Accounts are an important way to save for retirement. If you have an IRA or may open one soon, there are some key year-end rules that you should know. Here are the top four reminders on IRAs: 1.       Know the limits.  You can contribute up to a maximum of $5,500 ($6,500 if you are age 50 or older) to a traditional or Roth IRA. If you file a joint return, you and your spouse […]