Surprise announcement by DOL affects small business health care planning

Posted 1 CommentPosted in Accounting, Small Business, Tax Planning

I didn’t see this one coming either: A small business employer who gives an employee money to help pay for the cost of Obamacare under any circumstances is considered to have set up an illegal group benefit plan that may trigger penalties under the Affordable Care Act. The warning is titled “FAQs about Affordable Care […]

Tax planning engagement letter for individual clients (revised)

Posted 1 CommentPosted in Accounting, Financial Planning, Small Business, Tax Planning

Update in September 2015: I am no longer using this letter. The new version is shorter, more segmented, and is in a format intended to be delivered by email and not on paper or PDF. The collaboration section is now simplified and changed. I am working on updating and expanding my tax planning engagement letter for […]

How I inadvertently contributed to incorrect tax treatment of HRAs

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Accounting, Employee Benefits, Tax Planning

Imagine that you are a mechanic and someone walks into your shop and asks you to put wings on his Honda Civic. You might say, “That’s silly, Civic’s don’t fly” and dismiss the request. Then three more owners walk in with the same question. You think about it some more and say “Well, it might look […]

Post-Sandy Government Shame List

Posted 3 CommentsPosted in Accounting, News and Politics, Small Business

In the two years since Sandy, I have found myself on the front line of an unfortunate number of unjustifiable actions taken by government against my small business clients and neighbors in the bayshore region of South Jersey. This list compiles ten of the most terrible government actions taken in the two years since Sandy. New […]

New CPA Office Makes a Value Offer for 2014 Tax Preparation

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Accounting, Small Business, Tax Planning

I am pleased to announce the launch my tax return preparation practice for the 2014 tax season. I am prepared with the most advanced software, qualified support staff and ready to handle electronic filing for all types of individual and small business tax returns anywhere in the U.S. In order to reduce the risk that […]

Small businesses wrestle with Form 941 Employer’s Quarterly Federal Tax Return

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Accounting, Small Business

IRS Form 941 Employer’s Quarterly Federal Tax Return is, almost by definition, one of the most often-encountered sources of tax trouble for small businesses. This is the tax form that reconciles the amount of wage tax that has been sent (or is now being sent) with the employer’s liability for collecting and submitting these funds. […]

Non-permitted contingent fees and commissions for CPAs

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Accounting, Financial Planning

Over the past month two of my web sites have received a growing numbers of visitors from Google and Bing search queries requesting examples of non-permitted contingent fees for CPAs. It appears that they come from multiple sources but I can not explain the sudden public interest. The reason, I suppose, is that I’ve written about two […]

Adoption of modern small business accounting systems is stalled

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Accounting, Computers and Internet

Results of a new research report published in CPA Trendlines, conducted by accounting technology consultancy Software Advice, confirm what I already suspected: the mass migration of small business accounting systems from desktop to cloud is not going as predicted. Small business clients are raising objections and remain unconvinced of the benefits or switching. The objections […]

Disagreements about taxation of individual health insurance in 2014

Posted 1 CommentPosted in Accounting, Employee Benefits, Tax Planning

It seems that the most confusing tax topic this year in the wake of the Affordable Care Act implementation is the taxation of individual health insurance when an employer is involved in the payment of the cost. No doubt other confusing issues are still on the horizon, but this one is here and now. Small business […]

Tax planning: keep priorities in focus to ensure success

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Accounting, Financial Planning, Tax Planning

“When a CPA simply files your tax return and doesn’t provide strategic tax planning or advice, you may not be getting your money’s worth.” – Forbes I couldn’t agree more. Unfortunately, far too often our priorities get buried in the pace of business today. Financial planning is muddled, tax planning opportunities are missed, and tax return […]