Latest Posts on USTaxAid's Blogs

  • Form 1099-A From Dumping Bad Real Estate

    March 28, 2014 | Posted in Diane's Blog, USTaxAid's Blogs

    The real estate downturn is still affecting taxpayers. If you lose or turn back a property, you’ll get a Form 1099-A.  This may be all you get if the fair market value (FMV) covers the debt you owe, if you clearly qualify for a tax exemption (bankruptcy or principal residence) or if the lender just decides to not give any more documentation. If you’ve gotten a Form 1099-A and wondering what happened to a Form 1099-C,... Read More »

  • The MERP is Still the Best Way to Write Off Medical Expenses

    March 27, 2014 | Posted in Diane's Blog, USTaxAid's Blogs

    How do you write off medical expenses? It used to be you could use a cafeteria plan to pay for medical expenses pre-tax. The Affordable Care Act of 2010 limited the amount you could pay that way. That left itemizing deductions, which are limited based on your adjusted gross income. There is one more solution, but you need to have a business and it needs to be in the right structure. If your business is in a... Read More »

  • Which is Better: An S Corp or a C Corp for Deductions?

    March 26, 2014 | Posted in Diane's Blog, USTaxAid's Blogs

    Got a tax question? We’re happy to help. You can become a client, you can get a consultation or (the free solution) you can go to USTaxAid.com to ask your questions and I’ll answer it in a blog. Here’s a question I recently received: “Any difference in buying a business car into my LLC-S verses my LLC-C? Are deductions the same?” There are a number of ways to write off business use of a car: the company could... Read More »

  • Wrong Form 1099-C – Now What?

    March 25, 2014 | Posted in Diane's Blog, USTaxAid's Blogs

    Form 1099-As and Form 1099-Cs came back on tax preparer’s radar in 2006, 2007, 2008 when we saw people start to lose their properties to foreclosure, deed-in-lieu of foreclosure, short sale or, at least in the early years, had the principal amount reduced through loan modifications. You get a Form 1099-A when a property is taken back by a lender.  A Form 1099-C is given to you when you have debt forgiveness. This debt forgiveness is... Read More »

  • New 2013 Rules For Selling Your House For No Tax

    March 24, 2014 | Posted in Diane's Blog, USTaxAid's Blogs

    It’s March 2014, and I was shocked at something I found on the Internet today. There are lots of articles about how to sell your house for no tax. And unfortunately, 90% of them are wrong. In fact, “Real Estate Loopholes” which I wrote back in 2004, is wrong too. That’s why it is so important to make sure you’ve got correct and up-to-date information. Here’s what’s wrong: If you live in your house for 2 of the previous... Read More »

  • Best Way to Set Up For No or Low Tax When You Sell

    March 21, 2014 | Posted in Diane's Blog, USTaxAid's Blogs

    Real estate is heating up again. And that means planning for gain when you sell. That’s why today’s question is so timely: “I may be selling my home and buying a new one.   Is there a way to title the home (trust / LLC / ?) to avoid transfer issues later (inheritance and also Obamacare confiscations to pay medicare) ?” There is one big benefit when it comes to selling your principal resident. If you’ve owned the house... Read More »

  • Sole Proprietorship or S Corp?

    March 20, 2014 | Posted in USTaxAid's Blogs

    One of the most important questions a business owner will ask is, “What’s the best business structure?” The answer, of course, is “It depends.” Some of the factors to consider include:  your business income/loss, your tax bracket without the business income, your exit strategy, your funding strategy, how risk averse you are and how simple you want to keep your plan (even if it means you pay more tax.) So, it’s no surprise that we get a lot... Read More »

  • Question About Series LLC Accounting

    March 19, 2014 | Posted in Diane's Blog, USTaxAid's Blogs

    If you have multiple real estate properties or are a serial entrepreneur, a Series LLC may be right for you. In the right circumstances, they can mean more privacy, less cost and much simpler set-up procedures. But if you’re in the wrong state (California) or set them up incorrectly, it can cause way more trouble than they’re worth. We recently received this question at USTaxAid.com  If you have tax questions, there are a number of ways... Read More »

  • IRA Investing Gone Wrong

    March 18, 2014 | Posted in Diane's Blog, USTaxAid's Blogs

    I am so glad that I got this question at USTaxAid.com.  I hope that my answer is in time so that the writer doesn’t do something drastic and costly. Here’s the question:  “Can the LLC/1120S file K-1's to the IRA holders even though they're NOT members/shareholders?” Here are some of the issues with the question:

    1. An LLC-S or S Corporation can not have an IRA as a shareholder. So the fact pattern at the beginning of the question... Read More »

    2. Question about IRA LLC

      February 14, 2014 | Posted in Diane's Blog, USTaxAid's Blogs | 1 Comment

      I got a question at USTaxAid.com about how to administer an IRA LLC. Actually the post had several questions incorporated. I’m not going to answer the question, at least not right away. That’s because the beginning explanation had a major problem. Here’s how the question started: "My question is regards a single-member LLC for the purpose of investing with qualified IRAs. It will invest in stocks and ultimately real estate. The LLC will file with the IRS to... Read More »

    3. How Do You Break Up With Your CPA?

      February 12, 2014 | Posted in Diane's Blog, USTaxAid's Blogs

      Your CPA probably knows more about you than any other person. I sometimes feel like I’m part counselor, part advisor and part fortune-teller with my clients. We know the truth of our client’s finances, beyond what is visible to the average person. We know where the true assets, undiscovered opportunities (both in and out of the business) and risks are. When someone knows that much about you, how do you ever leave? How and when... Read More »

    4. Business Lessons from the Shark Tank

      February 7, 2014 | Posted in USTaxAid's Blogs

      This past week I saw someone recommending that a new start-up get on Shark Tank. They had no sales. They had no website. They had no production. And I got to thinking, “Have you been watching the same show I have?” In other words, I think they would eat you alive in the Shark Tank. But, it also demonstrates some of the mistakes people make when they start their business. Sales and profit attract investors. Period. They... Read More »

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