Alcorn & Cureton, Ltd.
Certified Public Accountants and Business Advisors
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Our Summer hours are 8am to 5pm Monday thru Thursday.  We take Fridays off to recover from tax seaon.

Individual tax returns on extension are due Oct 15 2016.

Corporate returns extended are due Sept 15th.

There are a bunch of new filing deadlines for next year, with the most dramatic being that W-2 forms and 1099s have to be filed by Jan 31, 2017.  This covers all employers, including household employers of nannys. 

We wish the best of luck to Danielle Durand, our office manager, who is taking off to have her little baby girl. Congrats! She has always done a excellent job on our swithchboard and making appointments, and we are happy to have Anne Christoffel running the office while Danielle is out.

The IRS does NOT call you to say they are suing you, taking you to court or demanding you make a payment to them today.  These are scams. The IRS also does NOT send out emails regarding a tax refunds or rebates or request that you set up a PIN number in order to get your refund. These are phishing schemes and phone scams, and you should not respond to them and NEVER, NEVER, NEVER click on a link from one of those emails. PLEASE REPORT THESE TO http://www.treasury.gov/tigta/contact_report_scam.shtml 

A wonderful video on this is http://www.cnn.com/2015/03/13/us/irs-scam/index.html

Setting up a 529 Plan for your kids or grandchildren?  While there is not a Federal tax deduction, there are state tax deductions available if set up with your state of residence or its approved plan.  You can maximize your state tax deductions by splitting the accounts between husband and wife (Virginia) or by the different type of plans (Maryland). 

They did it!  Congress passed the Tax Extenders bill. This gets our equipment expense deduction back up ot $500,000 as it was in previous years, along with keeping the R&D tax credit and other useful deductions. Congress also made some changes to benefits from Social Security that can afect those in the 65-70 age group.  We are working the details of the changes and will be ready for planning on them in the next few weeks. The changes that affect the "file and suspend" method take effect at the end of April 2016.  See the bottom of this page for more info on the "File and Suspend" from USA Today. You can get your available SS benefits from their website (www.SSA.gov) and there are lots of guides on how and when to claim your SS on the web.

 

Did you know that employers of as few as two employees can be fined $100 per day per employee if they have a non-conforming health plan OR if they offer a premium reimbursement plan to the employees?  The new health care law (ACA) has some serious fines and penalities that can hit even the smallest employers. 

Need info on the ACA (the Affordable Health Care Act)? The following has a good explanation for both indivuduals and for small businesses. http://accountants.intuit.com/health/index.jsp

 

Transmit your data to us safely and securely. Use our File Share Portal. The File Share link is at the bottom of this page. Do see the message at the bottom regarding browser versions.

With the increase in Capital Gains Rates, Sec 1031 Exchanges are coming back in style.  If you have a planned sale of Real Estate that will generate large capital gains, give us a call and we can discuss how you can defer the tax on those gains to a later date.

Is your business an ALE?  If so, you had to provide Heath Insurance to your Employees effective January 1 2016.  What is an ALE? It is an Applicable Large Employer. Those are employers with 50+ full time equivalent workers.  If you are anywhere close to that size, you need to be aware of the required coverages under the Affordable Care Act. For 2015, employers with 50 or more FTE employees have to file the 1095 forms, even though insurance is not required in 2015 unless you have 100 employees.  Insurance coverage is required for all companies over 50 employees in 2016.

Virginia Employers, including individuals with rental properties, must file a BPOL license with your county or city by March 1.  Landlords with properties in DC must file a Franchise Tax return.

Get a heads up on the new laws-subscribe to our NEWSLETTER.  Our monthly newsletter will be emailed to you each and every month.  Click on the Subscribe button at the bottom of the page. This is a free client service that we want you to take advantage of.  There are always a lot of good tax planning ideas in each monthly newsletter.

Thinking about using a Tax Relief company to reduce your balance due to the IRS? Check out the news article, in Links on the top menu line, then in News.

Are you (personally or your business) subject to the Use Tax to your state? Check out our article on this in the Newsletter section.

Are you maximizing your retirement plan deductions? Is all of your estate planning (wills, trusts and medical directives) up to date? Please make sure that we have the current version of your Will and Trust documents. 

Are you selling your investment real estate? Don't pay taxes on the gain-do a Section 1031 Exchange. See the article on 1031 Exchanges in the Newsletter section. Never think about selling your real estate without talking to us first.

Should your unincorporated business elect to be taxed as an S Corporation? Check out the article in the Newsletter section.

Be sure to catch our monthly newsletter, updated on the first of each month. Clicking on the Newsletter tab above can access the newsletter. We provide this newsletter service for you to keep up with the latest changes in the tax laws and newest ideas for tax and financial planning.

Need Tax Information? We have the complete CCH TAX GUIDE accessible at the INFO CENTER tab above. This complete tax book has information on individual, business and even non-for-profit taxes, with a full search feature.

We have added many new calculators in our FINANCIAL TOOLS section (tab above) including a full 1040 tax calculator, estate planning and mortgage loan calculators, including refinance savings computations and amortization schedules. There are so many powerful calculators; you will be able to calculate things that you never thought existed!

Driving directions to our office can be found in the CONTACTS section.

In addition to providing you with a profile of our firm and the services we provide, this Website has been designed to become a helpful resource tool to you, our valued clients and visitors. Our dedication to superior client service has brought us to the Internet as we endeavor to continue to provide the highest quality professional service and guidance.

As you browse through our Website, you will see that not only have we highlighted background information on our firm and the services we provide, but have also included useful resources such as informative articles (in our Newsletter section) and interactive financial calculators (in our Financial Tools section). Check out the nifty refinancing calculators to determine if you should refinance now, and how much it may save you.

In addition, we have taken the time to gather many links to external Websites that we felt would be of interest to our clients and visitors (in our Internet Links section).

The Gross National Debt

While browsing through our Website, please feel free to contact us with any questions or comments you may have - we'd love to hear from you. We pride ourselves on being proactive and responsive to our clients' inquiries and suggestions.

NEW EXPANDED FTP SIZE! UP TO 1 gig. Need to send us a large QuickBooks or other file? Use our File Share program. Click on the File Share logo below and click on the New User Registration button. Please be sure to remember your sign in name and password that you set up. You will then be able to send up any file up to 1gig in size. If you registered before June 18, 2012, you will need to update your registration.  If you try to upload something and you get a "not enough space" message, please give us a call. On some days we get a large amount of data in and the box overflows.

SS "File and Suspend" from USA Today:

Q: I am almost 67 and have filed for and suspended my Social Security benefit. My wife will turn 66 in August 2016. Our plan is to have her file for spousal benefits at that time against my earnings record. She has not worked that much, and her own benefit is less than 50% of mine. Is that still possible with the recent law changes? — Ruediger Schmidt, Houston

A:  Yes, the file-and-suspend and restricted application strategies are still available for some married couples, but the clock is ticking. 
Those age 66 or older on or before May 1, 2016, can still file-and-suspend but they must do so on or before April 29, 2016, according to the provisions of the Bipartisan Budget Act (BBA) of 2015. In addition, those born on Jan. 1, 1954, or earlier can still file a restricted application when they reach Full Retirement Age (FRA). 
But some married couples are out of luck when it comes to the file-and-suspend and restricted application strategies. Those born on Jan. 2, 1954, or later are no longer eligible to file a restricted application. And those born after May 1, 1950, are no longer eligible to use the file and suspend strategy that was in effect prior to the BBA of 2015.
In your case, Mark Orr, a certified financial planner and author of Social Security Income Planning: The Baby Boomer's Guide to Maximize Your Retirement Benefits, says your plan is exactly what file and suspend is supposed to do. 
“It allows (you) to file for benefits — so (your) wife can get the full 50% spousal benefit at full retirement age since it's less than her own earnings record would provide — while your own Social Security grows by the 8% annual delayed credits,” says Orr.
A restricted application, according to 2016 Social Security & Medicare Facts published by The National Underwriter Co., allowed an individual who was at least full retirement age, who had not previously filed for any benefits, and whose spouse has established a filing date (and may have suspended), to file for only the spousal benefit based upon the spouse’s record. The “restricted” terminology indicates that the filing is not for their own benefit but for spousal benefits, which allows their own account to continue to grow.
The file and suspend strategy, again according to 2016 Social Security & Medicare Facts, allowed an individual who was at least full retirement age (currently 66 years of age) to file for his or her own retirement benefit and then immediately suspend receipt of those benefits until a future date up until age 70.
By way of background, under the BBA of 2015, some married couples and parents with dependent/disabled children can still take advantage of the file-and-suspend strategy. For instance, someone who was born May 1, 1950, or earlier can still file and suspend. But they must do so by April 29, 2016.

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