Tuesday, 17 July 2018

How to Avoid Tax Errors

ruth noel income tax return

How to Avoid Tax Errors

Tax season is a time full of pressure and urgency, which can invariably lead to mistakes. Paper trails go missing, tax deductions are not claimed, and these things can result in very expensive surprises.

The following are eight common tax preparation errors that are made by small businesses, along with some useful tips to help mitigate these mistakes.

If you started a business last year, you can write off your expenses.

The owner of a new business can write off expenses that were incurred even before they technically opened for business. Make sure that you don’t overlook these deductions and learn all you can about writing off expenses when you start a new business.

Car deductions

Many people are confused regarding what constitutes a genuine business driving deduction. Barbara Weltman, an SBA guest blogger thoroughly examines the issue in her blog post “Driving for Business.” Business driving refers to when you travel from your place of work to visit a vendor or customer. When you are traveling from your house to a different location it will depend on whether it is considered a business trip or not. If you are commuting back and forth from your house to your office, that is a nondeductible personal expense. But if you are working from your home office that you claim as a tax deduction, then traveling to and from your house to a business location is considered to be deductible business driving.

Mileage deduction

Limiting their deductions to just mileage is another big mistake commonly made by business owners. If you are able to prove the following are business expenses there are other costs that can be deducted, including parking fees and tolls, lease payments, insurance, tires, oil, and gas.

Don’t forget about small items

These can include education classes, magazine subscriptions, petty cash purchases, and more. Those types of small expenses often add up quickly. Be sure to track all of your expenses and then consult with your tax advisor to find out what can and cannot be deducted.

Don’t exaggerate any of your business deductions

Your accountant will help to ensure that you don’t exaggerate or overdo your deductions. That is something that can increase the chances of an IRS audit. For instance, many owners of small businesses mistakenly believe that they are able to deduct 100% of client gifts or their meal costs when they are traveling. Actually these are only partly deductible.

Also, if your expenses are much higher this year compared to last year or they aren’t considered typical for your type of business or industry, then the IRS might question it.

It isn’t just the IRS

The IRS is just one part of the overall tax picture. Make sure you don’t forget about the other tax obligations that you have – self-employment taxes, excise taxes, local taxes, payroll, property taxes, etc. If you do not comply in a timely fashion those can come back to hurt you as well.

Separating business and personal

One thing that can cause a lot of confusion at tax time is when you intermingle your business and personal bank accounts and make it difficult to track your expenses and income. Also, if you run a home business, be sure that space is kept distinct and separate from the remainder of your house so you are able to claim your home office deduction correctly.

Avoid payroll mistakes

One thing that numerous small business owners tend to struggle with is payroll tax compliance. There can be some very unpleasant financial consequences when you get this wrong. According to statistics, around 40% of all small businesses are assessed an average of $845 in IRS penalties every year. To ensure that your payroll taxes get properly deposited, hire a payroll company to handle your payroll functions or if you want to do it yourself then get tax preparation certification. The benefits are far greater than the fees you will have to pay.

Make sure your records are kept up-to-date

This is a problem that is quite common for many businesses and can lead to missed opportunities to reduce the year’s taxable income. Be sure to reconcile, track and support your expenses with receipts (required by the IRS). Spend time every week reviewing your accounts – cash flow, credit card transactions, accounts payable, accounts receivable, etc. If your small business is growing, consider investing in accounting software (all of your financial activities and transactions are synchronized in one central dashboard) or hire an accountant.

 

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Review of ASUS ZenBook S UX391UA-XB74T Ultra-thin

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Another new from ASUS is the ZenBook  S. The ultra-thin and lightweight laptop was being exhibited in the last Computex 2018 event. The popularity of ASUS laptops is hitting almost every ranking and events worldwide. Now, everyone is waiting for the next model of laptop ASUS will release on the market.

As a seasoned traveler, you’ll appreciate the way ZenBook S slips effortlessly into your bag, with its svelte profile taking up the bare minimum of space and adding hardly any weight. Less bothersome bulk, more room for the really important stuff. With any ZenBook, your comfort is one of our top priorities, ZenBook S goes the extra mile with its exclusive ErgoLift hinge, an engineering masterpiece designed to automatically tilt the keyboard to the most comfortable typing position. But that’s not all: the carefully calculated tilt improves cooling and audio performance, too. ZenBook S is built to get things done as quickly and efficiently as possible, with no fuss or drama. The latest Intel® Core™ processors mean you’ll enjoy smooth and responsive performance whatever you’re doing, and the state-of-the-art components are all specially selected to ensure you’ll spend less time waiting and more time enjoying.

ZenBook S uses a high-capacity battery that won’t let you down, however long and demanding your working day is. And its fast-charge technology lets you recharge ZenBook S up to 60% capacity in as little as 49 minutes, so you can be up and running quicker than ever. For maximum performance, heat needs to be removed as quickly as possible. ZenBook S uses an uprated cooling system incorporating state-of-the-art components, such as a liquid-crystal-polymer fan impeller that’s just 0.3mm thick and a copper-alloy heat pipe with 0.1mm-thin walls. An all-new fan housing design with improved airflow gently expels warm air from the interior via hidden vents in the hinge, for efficient, serenely quiet cooling even under full load.

Price: $1,499.99

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Tax Preparation Checklist

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Tax Preparation Checklist – Аn 8 Ѕtер Fіnаl Сhесklіst fоr Fіlіng Yоur Тах Rеturns!

Tax preparation checklist steps are listed below in this article.

Many taxpayers file their returns in a hurry to beat the final submission deadline and will not take much of their time to review the return’s form before filing it.

This last-minute rush can easily lead to errors, some of which might cost you a lot of money.

An error of understated income and by extension, taxes, for example, may cost you interest and penalties when discovered later.

Therefore, ensure that you thoroughly review the return before submitting it.

Tax Preparation Checklist Steps

However, if you are pressed for time- and many taxpayers are – then the checklist below will help you have a quick last minute review of your returns:

1) Confirm Amounts and Documentation

The first step you should take is to countercheck the numbers included in the Form 1040 with the numbers indicated in the W-2, 1099s, and other support documentation.

Ensure that you have all of the paperwork and relevant documents together before even getting started. Or else this will come back to bite you later.

This is also an opportune time to submit the support documentation for your tax return. After you’ve confirmed the numbers, add up the totals to ensure that you haven’t made a mathematical error.

2) Compare With Previous Return

Next, compare your current tax return type and the form you registered in the preceding calendar year.

This will allow you to confirm that you’ve claimed all due tax reliefs and you’ve accounted for any tax-related changes that occurred within the year.

3) Review With A Tax Expert

If your tax returns are being prepared by a tax preparer, then reviewing the numbers and comparing with the previous year’s yields will enable you to inquire аbоut аnу сhаngеs thаt уоu mіght nоt undеrstаnd іn уоur tах rеturn tуре.

4) Verify Personal Information

Once you’re okay with the substance of your tax return, you can proceed and affirm the private information indicated.

Make certain you have indicated the correct Social Security numbers for yourself, your spouse if filing jointly and your children if claiming child-related tax relief.

If names have changed such as in the case of marriage or divorce, ensure that you have updated your new name with the Social Security Administration (SSA) and received а nеw Ѕосіаl Ѕесurіtу саrd bеfоrе uрdаtіng уоur tах rеturn fоrms.

If you’ve changed your address over the year, ensure that you have filed a Change of Address form with IRS before filing returns.

5) Appropriate Signing

Ensure that you sign properly and if it is a joint return, ensure your spouse signals appropriately.

If your spouse passed away within the tax year being accounted for, you might indicate “Surviving Spouse” against your name and keep another signatory space clean.

Ensure that your tax preparer signals and indicates his or her PTIN number.

6) Attachments

Ensure that you attach all required documentation before filing.

This includes the “Copy B” of the Form W-2s and 1099-Rs. For those asserting specific reliefs that require attachments such as the Adoption Credit, ensure that you have attached the correct documentation.

7) Take a Copy

Finally, before submitting the tax return, ensure that you take a copy of the Form 1040 and attachments.

File this copy in your tax file beside the other support documentation.

If you’re filing electronically, print a copy of the form before submitting and after submitting, ensure that you print the IRS “Acceptance” notification.

8) Filing

If you’re filing manually, ensure that you send out the Form 1040 with the ideal attachments.

You can attach a check for paying due taxes to the Form 1040.

Іnсludе уоur Ѕосіаl Ѕесurіtу Νumbеr оn thе сhесk.

However, do not send any other IRS form together with the Form 1040.

Each IRS form should be mailed in a separate envelope.

You can then proceed and post the email using registered mail before the deadline and keep the registered mail receipt as evidence of having registered.

If you are filing using tax software you can follow the on-screen instructions and you will receive a confirmation via the software.

We hope that this tax preparation checklist has been helpful to help you get a clear mind when it comes to tax season.

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Monday, 16 July 2018

1040 tax form for 2017

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When it comes time to do your taxes, you may be tempted to just grab a 1040 EZ form and get your taxes done quickly. This could cost you hundreds or even thousands of dollars if you don’t see which option is best for you.

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1040 tax form instructions 2018

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One thing is for certain, there is no shortage of tax forms in this country, and having an understanding for each one is a daunting task, even for most accountants. The most practical approach for taxpayers is to have a general understanding of the forms that might affect them the most.

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Review of ASUS ZenBook Pro

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Last June 5, 2018, held the Computex 2018 where they exhibit the best of technology and the upcoming release in the gadgets. This week we will feature some of the best laptops in Computex event. Asus hit the popularity in the event with their ZenBook Pro model and has been an Amazon’s Choice since late last year. It seems that Asus has been crushing its opponents with their chicky yet classy laptops.

The ZenBook Pro features up to a 7th Generation Intel Core i7 quad-core processor with 16GB of DDR4 RAM and gaming-grade NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti graphics. Its astonishing processing power shames most desktops, and its ultra-fast 512GB PCIe SSD storage delivers superb responsiveness. ZenBook Pro uses up to the latest NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti gaming-grade graphics with 4GB of GDDR5 video memory to deliver performance that’s nearly twice as fast as a GeForce GTX 960M GPU. This DirectX 12-compatible graphics monster delivers all the horsepower you need for even the most graphics-intensive tasks, such as 3D rendering, 4K UHD video playback or ultra-detailed 4K UHD gaming. A laptop this powerful deserves an exceptional keyboard. The full-size silver-backlit keyboard of the ZenBook Pro offers impressive 1.5mm key travel, making typing more comfortable and more accurate. ZenBook Pro also includes a precision touchpad that’s cleverly engineered for maximum comfort and accuracy, with a glass covering for smooth control. The touchpad features palm-rejection technology and supports multi-touch gestures and handwriting.

Heat is the enemy of performance. The ZenBook Pro stays cool at all times with its highly efficient dual-fan cooling system that incorporates three heat pipes. ZenBook Pro uses a high-capacity 73Wh lithium-polymer battery and clever ASUS thermal engineering to provide up to 14 hours of battery life for productivity tasks, or up to 10 hours of Full HD video playback. And it includes fast-charge technology that lets you recharge ZenBook Pro up to 60% capacity in just 49 minutes.

Price: $1,579.00

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Free Tax Software

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Free Tax Software – Choosing The Right Free Tax Software Program!

Free tax software can be great if you don’t want to scoop out cash for accounting software.

Do it yourself tax software is rapidly becoming the preferred method of filing taxes for both individual and smaller businesses and many people start off by looking for a free version.

As the requirement for free tax software increases, an increasing number of vendors are entering the market.

Аt thе mоmеnt thеrе аrе mоrе thаn 30 tax software applications аvаіlаblе tо соnsumеrs (well, these are the ones that are easy to search out).

Wіth sо mаnу vеndоrs соmреtіng fоr уоur рurсhаsеs, іt’s іmроrtаnt fоr tахрауеrs tо knоw thаt nоt аll free tах sоftwаrе іs “оnе sіzе fіts аll.”

Among the most common methods in deciding which program is right for you is to read and compare the software reviews on sites аnd іn mаgаzіnеs.

Іt’s іmреrаtіvе thаt соnsumеrs tаkе thе tіmе tо соmраrе thе costs and features of the numerous tax software applications sіnсе thеу vаrу grеаtlу аmоng vеndоrs.

Таkе thе tіmе tо fіnd fеаturеs іn а рrоgrаm thаt аrе mоst rеlеvаnt аnd іmроrtаnt tо уоur tax filing requirements.

Ѕо whаt shоuld уоu actually lооk fоr in free tax software?

Fеаturеs

Тhе fеаturеs саn аnd dо vаrу grеаtlу frоm рrоgrаm tо рrоgrаm.

Таkе thе tіmе tо rеvіеw thе fеаturеs оf еасh tах рrоgrаm thоrоughlу tо sее іf іt mееts уоur реrsоnаl nееds.

Іf уоu hарреn tо bе а homeowner, you might search for a program that offers support for investments, home businesses, home improvements, and leasing properties.

If you’re someone who regularly donates to great саusеs, sееk оut а рrоgrаm thаt fеаturеs mоrе suрроrt fоr сhаrіtаblе соntrіbutіоns.

Dоn’t buу аll thе bеlls аnd whіstlеs іf уоu dоn’t want them. You can always upgrade features as you grow your business.

Price

Okay, so you realised that free tax software is not actually going to cover all of your needs long-term.

So how much do the other options cost?

Prices can range from $14.99 to well over $100.00 for tax software so make sure to shop around.

Don’t buy the first program you find.

Take some time to research other sellers having the same or similar features and compare costs.

Κеер іn mіnd thаt сhеар dоеsn’t nесеssаrіlу mеаn inferior quality, and expensive will not necessarily mean that you’ll be getting the best quality.

Plus remember that there are some basic packages that you pay for in full, or you can choose other packages and spread the cost and pay each month to access the accounting software.

Customer Support

Now this is what really separates the best tax and accounting software from the other low-cost mediocre options.

However, we have seen over the years that even the best cloud accounting companies actually cut back on support as they get bigger and acquire millions of new customers!

So watch out…

Tax is simply one of those areas that require great expertise, so it’s no wonder that even the big cloud accounting companies will not be able to answer every one of your technical finance questions.

Pay careful attention to the support provided by your tax software program. Usually, the support will be focused on IT and tech problems.

Some sellers will offer email support to tax professionals when you have problems; others might even offer free phone support. Many tax software programs also offer free audit protection.

Reviews

Most review sites publish the testimonials from only a small choice of the tax programs available now.

So you may be missing out on the opinions of other citizens who’ve used many different applications on the market.

This means that for some taxpayers, one of the alternate programs could be more useful, cheaper and more helpful than the few programs listed on mainstream review websites.

If you take your time and investigate the many software options out there, you will find оnе thаt mееts аll оf уоur rеquіrеmеnts аnd then you’ll definitely have a less stressful tax season.

Faithful in your success!

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Sunday, 15 July 2018

1040 tax form schedule d

ruth's tax return service

If you’ve never before filed your own taxes, you may not know which forms you need before you even get started. Picking these forms up in person means you’re forced to make a decision on the spot regarding what’s right for your financial situation. Even if you do come prepared with a list, you’ll need to sift through stacks of similarly named forms, hoping you wrote down the correct alphanumeric combination.

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