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Tax Strategy for the Week (October 18th, 2013)

Does it Make Sense to Refinance a Mortgage?
 
Tax Issue

The chance to refinance a mortgage and get a lower interest rate is sure to get a homeowners’s attention. Most people assume that refinancing will put them ahead economically, but that’s not always the case. Any number of situations can arise which will make the decision to refinance unwise. Refinancing a mortgage should be done with just as much care as was put into the decision to obtain the original mortgage. Sometimes a mortgage refinance makes sense. Other times, it is better to stay with the current arrangement.

Applicable Tax Law

Home mortgage […]

Tax Strategy for the Week (October 11th, 2013)

Employee Business Expenses – Avoiding Tax Problems
 
Tax Issue

Employees may be able to deduct their unreimbursed work-related expenses as itemized deductions subject to the 2% AGI limitation. Deductible expenses are those that are ordinary and necessary expenses and which are not reimbursed. Various substantiation rules apply depending on the type of deduction that is claimed. Without properly planning ahead of time so that the taxpayer retains the necessary documentation required, the IRS could disallow deductions for unreimbursed employee business expenses.

Applicable Tax Law

Ordinary and necessary expenses which are not reimbursed by an employer are deductible.

1.) Ordinary expense: An expense that is […]

Tax Strategy for the Week (October 4th,2013)

Married Filing Separately Tax Planning

 

Tax Issue

In general, married taxpayers living in the same household usually file joint returns. Tax preparers tend to assume the Married Filing Jointly filing status is best for married taxpayers living together and that the few returns that may save a little bit of tax by Married Filing Separately (MFS) are not worth the extra tax preparation fees that would apply for filing two separate returns.

Applicable Tax Law

Any taxpayer that was married at the end of the tax year can file MFS. A spouse does not need permission from the other spouse to choose to […]