Traditional estate planning strategies generally are based on the assumption that all family members involved are U.S. citizens. However, if you or your spouse is a noncitizen, special rules apply that may require additional planning. Defining “residency” and “domicile” If you’re a U.S. resident, but not a citizen, you’re treated similarly to a U.S. citizen by the Internal Revenue Code. You’re s...

Late last year, Congress passed, and the President signed into law, the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement (SECURE) Act. Among its most notable rule changes are those pertaining to 401(k) plans. Here are some key highlights. New tax credit Starting in 2020, the new rules create a tax credit of up to $500 per year to employers to defray startup costs for new 401(k) plans and SI...

If your marketing budget is limited, there may be ways to make that money go further. Smart strategies abound for small to midsize businesses. Let’s look at a few ideas for stretching your marketing dollars a bit further. Check out the big guys Look to larger companies for ideas on how to improve and amp up your marketing tactics. Big businesses use many different types of campaigns and sometime...

You’ve no doubt read articles or heard stories about how artificial intelligence (AI) is bringing sweeping change to a wide variety of industries. But it’s one thing to learn about how this remarkable technology is changing someone else’s company and quite another to apply it to your own. Here’s a primer on what AI might be able to do for your business. 3 technology types AI generally refers to ...

The concept of “matching” is one of the basic principles of accrual-basis accounting. It requires companies to match expenses (efforts) with revenues (accomplishments) whenever it’s reasonable or practical to do so. This concept applies when companies make advance payments for expenses that will benefit more than one accounting period. Here are some questions small business owners and managers fre...

If, like many people, your traditional IRA holds a mixture of deductible (after-tax) and nondeductible (pretax) contributions, it’s important to track your contributions carefully to avoid double taxation of distributions. Why? Because the IRS treats distributions as a blend of pretax and after-tax dollars. If you treat distributions as fully taxable, you’ll end up overpaying. An example Dan, ag...

While you were celebrating the holidays, you may not have noticed that Congress passed a law with a grab bag of provisions that provide tax relief to businesses and employers. The “Fu Posts rther Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2020” was signed into law on December 20, 2019. It makes many changes to the tax code, including an extension (generally through 2020) of more than 30 provisions...

The IRS announced it is opening the 2019 individual income tax return filing season on January 27. Even if you typically don’t file until much closer to the April 15 deadline (or you file for an extension), consider filing as soon as you can this year. The reason: You can potentially protect yourself from tax identity theft — and you may obtain other benefits, too. Tax identity theft explained I...

If your company comes up over budget year after year, you may want to consider cost management. This is a formalized, systematic review of operations and resources with the stated goal of reducing costs at every level and controlling them going forward. As part of this effort, you’ll answer questions such as: Are we operating efficiently? Cost management can help you clearly differentiate activit...

At the beginning of the year, many people make resolutions about improving their physical fitness and overall well-being. Employers may seek to give these goals a boost in the longevity department by offering an employee wellness program. If your organization is doing so, or considering such a program, it’s important to be aware of the many federal laws involved. Five of the most important are: ...