Category: Tax

New Tax Rules; What To Do Next?

With the passage today of the Tax Cuts And Jobs Act Of 2017, CFPs and CPAs are already digging in to figure out the best new tax strategies that will enable clients to keep as much of their earnings and savings as possible.  Even if Congress should shift to a Democratic majority in 2019, the…
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IRAs: Too Much Or Too Little, Which Is Worse?

Most people I speak to are aware of the 10% penalty for withdrawing from an IRA prior to age 59½.  And as with most government rules there are always exceptions that have been added on afterwards to support specific situations not considered when the original legislation was promoted.  But there are also penalties for contributing…
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Avoiding Tax Return Identity Theft

Now that tax-time is just around the corner, the IRS offers several warning signs that you may be a victim of tax-related identity theft and what to do about them: Your attempt to file your tax return electronically is rejected. You get a message saying a return with a duplicate Social Security number has been…
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Not All Muni Bonds Are Tax Free

At a wedding in 2007 I met a retired treasurer from a prestigious east-coast university.  He told me that all his investments were exclusively in insured municipal (muni) bonds.  The returns he received were good, sufficient to cover all his expenses, and were practically guaranteed.  But the best part of the muni investments, as he…
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Time To Worry About Underfunded Pensions?

I recently attended a seminar about public pension reform led by Chuck Reed, formerly mayor of San Jose and currently board member of the Retirement Security Initiative. As you probably recall, Reed led the effort to pass a pension reform measure for San Jose in 2012.  Here are some of the implications of the underfunded…
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How to Delay the IRS From Taxing Your Savings

If you’ve been working for a midsize or larger employer, chances are you’ve been utilizing a 401(k) to save for retirement. And even if you haven’t, you probably have an Individual Retirement Account (IRA) into which you’ve been saving every year. The great thing about these savings accounts is that the IRS gives you a…
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