Are you planning to itemize on your 2015 federal income tax return? If so, you can claim a deduction for taxes paid. According to IRS statistics, taxes are the most frequently claimed itemized deduction, as well as the largest. But what kind of taxes can you deduct on your personal return?
Tuesday, March 29, 2016
Thursday, March 24, 2016
Monday, March 21, 2016
Did you make contributions to a traditional or Roth IRA, a myRA, or a SEP or SIMPLE plan in 2015? You may qualify for the Retirement Savings Contributions Credit, more popularly known as the "saver's" credit. If you're eligible, you can apply this federal income tax credit against the tax you owe on your 2015 return. The credit is available even if you take a tax deduction for a traditional IRA contribution, as well as for IRA contributions for last year that you make before the April due date of your return.
Thursday, March 17, 2016
The Work Opportunity Tax Credit, known as WOTC, can reduce your federal income tax liability dollar-for-dollar when you hire certain workers. The credit is available for 2015 if you hired workers from "targeted" groups, such as ex-felons, food stamp recipients, and Supplemental Security Income recipients. Beginning in 2016, you can also claim the credit when you hire individuals who were unemployed for at least 27 consecutive weeks and who received unemployment compensation.
Monday, March 14, 2016
If you conduct qualified research activities, you may be eligible to claim a federal income tax credit known as the "research and development" credit. This credit is now permanent and may benefit you when you design, develop, and improve business products or processes. Beginning in 2016, the research and development credit can be applied against your alternative minimum tax liability. In some cases, the credit may also be applied against up to $250,000 of payroll taxes.
Wednesday, March 9, 2016
When you purchase assets and use them in your business, you have several options for deducting the cost. For example, you may choose to write off the full cost using Section 179, an alternative that lets you expense up to $500,000 of new and used equipment purchases. You can also use "bonus" depreciation to write off up to 50% of the cost of new assets with a life of 20 years or less. In both cases, you apply regular depreciation methods to the remaining value of the assets. The best way may not be a single choice, but rather a combination that optimizes your tax benefit. Contact us at (518) 798-3330 for a depreciation review.
Monday, March 7, 2016
A law passed last summer added a new task for estate executors and others who file estate tax returns after July 31, 2015: providing a statement of the value of estate assets to beneficiaries and the IRS. The statement is designed to ensure consistency between the value of the property for estate tax purposes and the basis a beneficiary reports for income taxes. The information is filed on Form 8971, Information Regarding Beneficiaries Acquiring Property From a Decedent. If you're required to complete Form 8971 before March 31, 2016, you do not need to do so until March 31, 2016. (The original due date was February 29, 2016.)