Texas Tax Talk

Texas Tax Talk

Category Archives: Tax Planning

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Requirements for Alimony – Can it be a good thing?

Posted in Tax Planning
Divorce is messy, divorce is costly – and it should be avoided wherever possible.  Spouses should always attempt to mitigate their losses and one way to do this is to consider designing the divorce settlement to include alimony. To many people, the idea of alimony can cause your blood to boil.  This negative attitude generally… Continue Reading

Tax and Business Planning for Farmers to Avoid Higher Taxes and Loss of Subsidies

Posted in Tax Planning
The Agricultural Act of 2014 (aka –  the 2014 Farm Bill) has been controversial, to say the least.  Among its many changes are an $8 billion cut to the “food stamp” program.  The Farm Bill also drastically modifies or ends farm “subsidies.” In our global marketplace, these subsidies are often necessary to help American farmers compete.  In my… Continue Reading

New Guidance From IRS On At-Risk Rules For LLC Member Guarantees

Posted in Tax Planning
The IRS recently released a chief counsel memorandum AM2014-003 on LLC Member Guarantees of LLC Debt and “Qualified Nonrecourse Financing.”  These memorandums are very helpful because they provide the IRS’ interpretation of complicated issues.  These memorandums do not have the force and effect of law – thus a taxpayer is not bound by them.  However, it… Continue Reading

IRS Makes Bitcoins a Tax Headache

Posted in Tax Planning
The IRS just published Notice 2014-21 which explains the IRS’ vision on how general tax principals apply to “virtual currency” transactions like Bitcoin. If you’re not familiar with Bitcoin, it’s a currency that isn’t issued by a central government. And just to be clear, there isn’t an actual “coin” associated with it either. The currency… Continue Reading

Crowdfunding and Taxes in Kickstarter: Everybody Wants Their Share

Posted in Tax Planning
The Crowdfunding movement has moved from an internet e-commerce buzz word to an actual viable way for everyone from the smallest of artists to high profile actors to get funding for a project that otherwise wouldn’t happen.  (For example $5.7 million to make a Veronica Mars movie http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/559914737/the-veronica-mars-movie-project).   The concept is simple: creators pitch a… Continue Reading

Expansion of IRS Innocent Spouse Relief

Posted in Tax Court, Tax Planning, Tax Practice
On September 13th the IRS issued a new revenue procedure that significantly changes equitable innocent spouse relief.  I wrote an article that was published Tuesday in the Texas Bar Association’s Texas Tax Lawyer . I have excerpted part of the article which discusses the significant changes. Change #1: Greater deference is given to the presence of… Continue Reading

Solution to the “Obamacare” Fiasco?

Posted in Tax Planning
One of the main complaints about the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare is it is bad for business.  The cost of requiring health insurance is just too high, and will lead to businesses either 1) shutting down or 2) never starting in the first place. This is obviously a gross simplification.  But every business struggles… Continue Reading

Breaking Bad and Tax Planning?

Posted in Criminal Tax, Tax Planning
In last Sunday’s final episode of “Breaking Bad”, Walter White broke into his former business partner’s house (Elliot and wife Gretchen). Reason?  To give them close to 10 million dollars in cash so they would set up a trust for Walter’s son.   Walter had been looking for ways to get the cash to his… Continue Reading

Are you a small business? You need to take advantage of the small business heath care credit

Posted in Tax Planning
Whether Obamacare is good or not remains to be seen.  To lessen the pain for small employers, the IRS does provide for a small business health care credit.  If you are a small business you should take advantage.   The IRS just issued proposed regulations governing Internal Revenue Code Section 45R which assist in understanding… Continue Reading

Volunteerism, Charity and Tax Breaks

Posted in Tax Planning
This past weekend there was a great 60 Minutes segment on Microsoft founder Bill Gates.  He is one of the greatest entrepreneurs of all time, but more recently has become a leader in charitable giving. Perhaps his greatest deed is his effort to eradicate disease, especially for children under five. Winston Churchill once said, “We make a… Continue Reading

Deadline to File FBARs Quickly Approaching

Posted in Tax Planning
There is absolutely nothing wrong with having a foreign bank account.  The problem comes along when the existence of the account is not disclosed and income associated with the account is not reported. You have probably heard about people “stashing” money in overseas or offshore bank accounts.  The United States is actively working to uncover these… Continue Reading

Top 5 Tax Mistakes that Doctors Make

Posted in Tax Planning
Most doctors loath dealing with financial reports and generally dealing with the business side of the practice of medicine.  Most just want to focus on helping their patients.  Failure to keep up with the “business” side of the practice of medicine can be devastating.  Here are my top mistakes. Support Staff – It is vital… Continue Reading

IRS Announces Information Sharing Agreement with Australia and the UK to Combat Tax Evasion

Posted in Criminal Tax, Tax Planning
The IRS continues to aggressively pursue offshore tax evasion.  Another example of which is plan to share tax information with Australia and the United Kingdom.  The announcement says that the target is trusts and companies holding assets on behalf of residents throughout the world. Popular countries used to create of trusts and other entities according to… Continue Reading

Basics of Stock Redemptions

Posted in Tax Planning, Uncategorized
Closely held corporations often have issues come up about succession planning and also about how to structure transactions in the most tax advantageous way possible.  Corporate redemption of a shareholders stock is always something to consider. Hypothetical  – Bob and Jim created an oil and gas services company back in the 1970s as 50-50 owners. … Continue Reading