Give a little Get a little

Tax Mileage for Charitable Travel Do you travel in your vehicle on behalf of a charity? In lieu of keeping track of actual expenses, you can use the standard mileage rate of 14 cents per mile, plus related tolls and parking fees, to figure out the deduction. Unlike the standard mileage rates for business, moving
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Ten Moves Forward for a Second Marriage

Consider estate-planning implications If you are getting remarried, you may face some special estate-planning challenges, especially if you have children from a prior marriage. The following 10 tips may help. 1. Talk with one another. Do not start off a marriage by hiding financial interests or concerns from one another. For instance, if you intend to
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Roundup of “Dirty Dozen” Tax Scams

IRS updates its list for 2017 The IRS recently released its annual list of “Dirty Dozen” tax scams to watch out for in 2017. Here is a rundown gleaned from the IRS’ summary. 1. Phishing: Be on guard against fake e-mails or websites looking to steal personal information. Do not click on e-mails claiming to come
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What You Need to Know About Section 529 Plans

Answers to several common questions How will you ever save enough money to pay for your children’s college educations? There are no absolute guarantees, but Section 529 plans may help you set aside funds, up to generous limits. Here are the answers to several common questions on this subject. Q. What exactly is a Section
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Enjoy Deductions for Summer T&E Expenses

Reap tax rewards for travel and entertainment What are your plans for the summer? If you have a business trip scheduled for a place you would like to visit personally, you might decide to combine a little pleasure with your business. Similarly, you may invite some of your best clients to your home for a
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Be Sure About Estimated Tax Payments

How to avoid underpayment penalties Even though you just put your 2016 tax return to bed, you cannot rest easy. It is already time to pay attention to your tax liability for 2017. Significantly, you may be required to pay installments of “estimated tax” for this year, especially if you are self-employed or retired. The
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This Retirement Planning Move Avoids Tax

Benefit from a rollover to an IRA If you receive a distribution from an employer’s retirement plan, such as a 401(k), you are generally required to pay ordinary income tax on the payout. However, with a timely maneuver, you can continue to postpone paying the tax until you are ready to make withdrawals. Basic rules:
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Seven Ways to Step Up SEO

Guidance for small-business owners How do you push your small company to appear near the top of a website search? It requires a better understanding of search engine optimization (SEO). For some small-business owners, however, this is like learning a foreign language. Here are seven ways to improve your “speech” in this area. 1. Keyword
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Business Driving Deductions: A Fork in the Road

Compare actual expenses with flat-rate method Did you use your vehicle for business driving in 2016? Generally, you can deduct expenses on your tax return in one of two ways: the actual expense method or the IRS-approved standard mileage rate. Here is a brief comparison: 1. Actual expense method: As the name implies, you can
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Getting Personal About Personal Exemptions

Tax return benefits for the family Are you entitled to personal and dependency exemptions on your tax return? It might be the last year you can claim the exemption for someone—say, a child graduating from college—or exemptions may be eliminated altogether by tax reforms that could be coming in conjunction with proposed rate cuts. At
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