Alice in Financeland

My client, Alice, came in for her semi-annual review meeting recently and said (as many clients do), “I don’t like paying taxes.” Good news: You only pay taxes when you’ve made money. But that does not mean you should not try to minimize your taxes as much as possible. In Alice’s case, she was transitioning…

Plan for the new tax law.

How The New Tax Law Affects You

On December 22, 2017, the president signed and put into law the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA). While much more legislation will be required on both the federal and state levels to clarify and correct the new rules, here’s what we know right now… New lower federal payroll withholding tables will go into effect…

Tax loss harvesting

Tax Loss Harvesting is All About Timing

Tax Loss Harvesting is a subject that usually comes to the minds of investors’ right before the end of the year when they start thinking about taxes. While that is fine, we like to be a bit more tactical in finding the right opportunities to harvest losses throughout the year. Investments can be volatile and it’s entirely possible that an opportunity to harvest losses may arise earlier, only to disappear before year-end. It is of course preferable to have a loss disappear because you’ve either made money or broken even. Nevertheless, there is some strategy involved in finding an asset with a short-term loss, selling that asset, and buying another in its place in order take advantage of the tax deferral. This strategy can work to your advantage, when used at the right time.

A Helpful Change to Maryland’s Estate Tax Law?

Governor Martin O’Malley recently signed a new law that will reduce the sting of estate taxes over the next several years for Maryland residents. So how does the Maryland tax compare with the federal version? As defined by the IRS, “The Estate Tax is a tax on your right to transfer property at your death.” The federal government imposes a tax on taxable estates in excess of $5.34 million (the individual federal exemption amount, which increases for inflation annually). Maryland currently imposes an estate tax on taxable estates in excess of $1 million (the state exemption amount).

A Surprise in Your Tax Bill?

Will There Be A Nasty Surprise In Your Tax Return?

Given the time of year, you may well be in the midst of gathering data for your 2013 tax return. As you embark on this project, you should be aware of a few new taxes you may have to pay. While I can’t cover everything, here are some of the bigger changes you might encounter.

(The changes outlined in this article were implemented in 2012 with the passage of the American Taxpayer Relief Tax Act (ATRA) of 2012, or with the Affordable Care Act).

The Good News and Bad News About Capital Losses

Discussing capital losses with clients isn’t usually much fun, because it involves the loss of money. The good news is that when we sell a position with a capital loss, it creates a taxable loss. And capital losses can be used to offset capital gains. If a taxpayer has taxable losses in excess of their capital gains, then they can deduct up to $3,000 of those capital losses against their ordinary income.