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Tax Planning

Should You Think About an ESOP?

Josh Patrick | Posted 07.10.2014 | Small Business
Josh Patrick

I'm a big fan of ESOPs, or Employee Stock Ownership Plans. In the right circumstance an ESOP might just be the ticket you've wanted to help you leave ...

Charitable Deductions for Animal-Rescue Volunteers

Julian Block | Posted 07.02.2014 | Money
Julian Block

When the annual reckoning with the IRS rolls around, their willingness to help out entitles them to write-offs for unreimbursed expenses incurred while they do volunteer work for rescue groups like the Humane Society of the U.S and the ASPCA.

Man, Woman, Money, Taxes

Julian Block | Posted 07.01.2014 | Business
Julian Block

The courts often have to resolve the troublesome question of whether a tax-free "gift" was actually a payment for services rendered. Not surprisingly, the question has come up when the IRS insisted on its share of sizable amounts received by women from men who weren't their husbands.

Start Planning for the Future

Mark Steber | Posted 07.28.2014 | Business
Mark Steber

It is time to start planning for the future and the future of your taxes is in about 240 days. That is when the IRS is expected to start processing 2014 tax returns (assuming no late tax legislation changes or other IRS delays) and you will be able to file your taxes and receive your refund.

Time to Plan for Your 2014 Taxes

David A. Dedman | Posted 07.20.2014 | Money
David A. Dedman

What? I just finished my #$%& taxes, and you want me to plan for next year?! That's right. It's fresh in your mind, and that's the best time to make adjustments to anything, especially your tax preparation.

Tax Court Upholds Business-Expense Deduction for Topless Dancer's Breast Implants

Julian Block | Posted 07.08.2014 | Divorce
Julian Block

Just because you incur expenses for business reasons doesn't mean that they automatically qualify as deductible. The Internal Revenue Code stipulates ...

Tax Strategies With Retirement in Mind

Jacob Gold | Posted 04.06.2014 | Business
Jacob Gold

When it comes to how to save for retirement, there are enough options to make anyone's head spin. While each approach has its benefits, when it comes to taxes, not all retirement savings vehicles are created equal.

What's Deductible for Legal Fees When Couples Divorce

Julian Block | Posted 04.05.2014 | Divorce
Julian Block

The IRS prohibits any deduction for the cost of personal advice, counseling and legal action in a divorce. For example, there's no write-off for what a husband spends to resist his wife's demands for more alimony or to set aside a pre┬Čnuptial property agreement.

Audit Survival Strategies

Julian Block | Posted 03.15.2014 | Money
Julian Block

Just because you can back up every item on your return, don't think you can forget about an audit. Those relentless IRS computers may bounce your retu...

Tough Rules for Home-Office Deductions

Julian Block | Posted 03.04.2014 | Business
Julian Block

The law allows freelancers and other individuals who work at home to claim home-office deductions only if they pass a series of tests. You must use a ...

Financial Tips That Ease the Sting of Divorce

Julian Block | Posted 02.24.2014 | Divorce
Julian Block

Educate yourself for financial planning. In this lumbering economy, it's more vital than ever that you assume greater responsibility for your financial future.

No Tax Break if Client Stiffs You

Julian Block | Posted 02.11.2014 | Money
Julian Block

Why should freelancers forget about any kind of relief when they fill out their tax forms?

The Five Steps for Financial Fitness

James Berman | Posted 03.10.2013 | Business
James Berman

Getting your finances into shape can appear daunting. Breaking it down into categories can help simplify the process. There are five main categories that everyone should tackle.

Taxes! After the Election - Now What?

Rick Rodgers | Posted 01.13.2013 | Money
Rick Rodgers

Start diversifying your savings today while tax rates are still low. The good news is there still time to take advantage of 2012 tax rates, which may turn out to be the lowest we see in some time. Here are three strategies to help diversify before the end of the year.

Give a Little Less to the IRS

Julian Block | Posted 01.07.2013 | Money
Julian Block

Individuals who reduce their income taxes with itemized deductions are aware that they can claim contributions to schools, religious organizations and other favorite causes. But many of them are unaware of other opportunities.

A Dilemma for Stock Market Investors: Sell or Sweat

Julian Block | Posted 12.10.2012 | Money
Julian Block

Unless Washington acts in the lame-duck session after the November elections, top rates for capital gains from most sales of assets owned more than 12 months are scheduled to increase. They will go from 15 percent for 2012 to at least 20 percent for 2013.

5 Simple Steps To Protecting Your Finances Post-Split

Julian Block | Posted 12.01.2012 | Divorce
Julian Block

There are simple steps that divorcing spouses should take to protect themselves financially.

Some Presidential Words on Federal Income Taxes

Julian Block | Posted 08.22.2012 | Money
Julian Block

Income taxes are such a pervasive and everyday part of our financial lives -- and such a central issue in presidential campaigns -- that they seem to have been around forever. They have not. Their debut is relatively recent.

No Tax Break If Client Stiffs You

Julian Block | Posted 10.06.2012 | Money
Julian Block

Contrary to what many self-employed individuals believe, long-standing regulations usually prohibit most of them from claiming bad-debt deductions on their federal and state returns when they are unable to recover amounts due from clients and customers.

Trouble Come Tax Time?

Julian Block | Posted 09.26.2012 | Divorce
Julian Block

Fact is, whether Brad, Angelina, Jennifer, Bristol, Levi, Snooki, or anyone else is hooking up, breaking up, or something in between, the odds and ends of their relationships are grist for the Internal Revenue Service mill.

Taxpayer Illiteracy: Persistent and Widespread

Julian Block | Posted 09.01.2012 | Money
Julian Block

How many of those surveyed aren't aware of their own tax brackets?

Medicare Surtaxes Hike Taxes for Upper-Incomers

Julian Block | Posted 09.01.2012 | Money
Julian Block

What's certain is that our lawmakers will enact even more complications to an already confusing tax code.

Making a Household Inventory List Can Save Time and Money

Julian Block | Posted 07.31.2011 | Business
Julian Block

Did you know that the tax code allows you to claim tax deductions for household damage caused by thefts, vandalism, fires, floods, hurricanes and others kinds of casualties?

Travel Deductions for Gamblers

Julian Block | Posted 06.04.2011 | Business
Julian Block

The tax rules for gamblers can be summed up simply: "Heads, the IRS wins; tails, gamblers lose." The faux-friendly feds routinely nail gamblers for taxes on their winnings.

Filing-Time Fantasies

Julian Block | Posted 05.25.2011 | Business
Julian Block

Most myths are fairly short lived. Some, though, just refuse to die. Take, for example, the one that makes the rounds every filing season about how to lessen the likelihood of an audit.