The CBD Blog

Find peer advice, partner insights, and industry updates – all here in the CBD blog, ‘At The Helm’! With contributions from our entire team, we blog about the things that interest you.

IRS Increases Annual Gift Tax Exclusion for 2018

Are you feeling generous this holiday season? If so, there’s good news: There’s still time to make gifts to family members for 2017. Plus, the annual gift tax exclusion has been increased by $1,000 for 2018. Here’s how annual gift-giving can add up to major tax savings for your family along with information on how the gift tax works and how recent tax reform proposals could affect your gift and estate plans.

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Year-End Business Tax Planning Strategies in Light of Tax Reform

Many small business owners are struggling with tax planning this year end. While you’re waiting to learn the fate of various tax reform proposals in Congress, your business can still make some last-minute tax-saving moves before December 31. Here are five ideas, along with current congressional tax reform proposals that could influence your planning options.

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Open Enrollment: Sign Up for Tax-Smart Benefits Before the Deadline

November is the time of year that employees sign up for employer-provided benefits for the following year. Tax reform legislation could affect your choices for 2018. But there are two important benefits that are expected to survive tax reform efforts: health care flexible spending accounts and retirement savings plans. Here are some important issues to consider as you sign up for benefits.

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Retirement Account Catch-Up Contributions Can Add Up

Have you saved enough for retirement? As people get older, many realize that their savings won’t be enough to maintain their preferred lifestyle into their golden years. Don’t let this happen to you. Consider making annual “catch-up” contributions to your IRAs and employer-sponsored retirement plans (if allowed) as soon as you reach age 50. Saving a little extra every year can help supplement your retirement nest egg and bridge any shortfalls.

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Defaulting on Retirement Plan Loans Causes Taxable Distributions

Before borrowing money from your retirement plan, it’s important to learn the rules for repayment. Otherwise, you could have a deemed taxable distribution and owe income tax plus a 10% early distribution penalty if you’re under age 59-1/2. Here’s the story of two taxpayers who fell into this trap, along with some relief provisions for individuals who take out retirement plan loans to help recover from recent disasters.

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