Bigger isn’t better when it comes to tax advice

Posted Leave a commentPosted in IRS, Law firm, Tax Planning, Taxes

Small law firms and accounting firms sometimes feel ‘pushed out’ when it comes to a client’s largest transactions like the sale of a business or estate property. That’s usually not a good thing. “reliance on a promoter takes the good faith out of good-faith reliance.” – Tax Court Justice Holmes There’s a powerfully clear and simple […]

The battle to cut federal income taxes

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Tax Planning, Taxes

Many of my clients are facing higher federal income taxes this year as a result of the so-called “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act” that was passed by a slim minority of Republican lawmakers without the benefit of professional review that normally accompanies important fiscal social policy issues. While the law cuts taxes for most people, […]

Tax planning checklist for attorneys

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Law firm, lawyer, Tax Planning

I shifted my tax planning practice from a focus on contractors to a focus on attorneys after the societal realignment that followed the presidential election of 2016. It quickly became clear that the range of tools and techniques would be quite different for my new small professional firm clients. Some of the accounting and planning […]

Who benefits the most from tax planning?

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Law firm, Retirement, self-employed, Tax Planning

Our tax laws provide more opportunity to some people than others. I find that some people can save tens of thousands of dollars with little effort through active tax planning while others might save only a thousand dollars or so. Obviously these high impact people are the ones that tax planners like me want to […]

Sample tax representation agreement

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Accounting, IRS, Tax Planning

I occasionally post sample current or previous engagement letters online. This one was an engagement letter/email used for tax representation services.     IF AFTER READING THIS YOU AGREE TO ALL THE TERMS, PLEASE RESPOND TO THIS EMAIL AND TYPE “AGREED“. PLEASE CALL WITH ANY QUESTIONS.   SUMMARY  OF THIS EMAIL Documents included: 1) Privacy […]

Don’t replace common sense with technology

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Tax Planning, Taxes

Tax filing is like grocery shopping Technology has transformed the annual tax filing ritual but far too many people are replacing good judgement with purely online mechanical tools. The result is a recent spike in errors leading to costly tax penalties and higher tax payments over the long-term. The most important part of the tax […]

Sample deferred compensation plan

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

Following is an annotated copy of the model truck language for a deferred compensation plan under  Rev. Proc. 92-64. TRUST UNDER ____ PLAN OPTIONAL (a) THIS AGREEMENT MADE THIS ___ DAY OF ___, BY AND BETWEEN ____ (COMPANY) AND ____ (TRUSTEE); OPTIONAL (b) WHEREAS, COMPANY HAS ADOPTED THE NONQUALIFIED DEFERRED COMPENSATION PLAN(S) AS LISTED IN […]

What the heck is a 501(k) plan?

Posted 4 CommentsPosted in Financial Planning, Retirement, Tax Planning

The financial services industry has a long history of creating new marketing terms to help sell its products. Certainly this is a productive and useful part of consumer financial service communications. The latest term gathering attention is a “501(k) plan”. The increased use of this term coincides with marketing of an already existing alternate tool […]

Questionnaire to determine the potential to save taxes

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Tax Planning

My business adviser, a data scientist, asked me to compile a list of questions necessary to determine the tax saving potential of an individual person. The intent is to keep the list as short as possible but allow us to calculate an estimate of the amount of tax savings that are possible through comprehensive financial […]