Estate planning aims at the transfer of wealth from one generation to another in a way which minimizes taxes and maximizes economic gain. It usually involves parents making gifts to their children, grandchildren, or charities. The problem is that while many clients spend hours with attorneys, accountants, and financial advisors crafting an estate plan, they spend no time with their intended beneficiaries explaining what they have done and why. After mom and dad are gone, the family acrimony begins - brother sues brother and sisters stop talking to one another for years.
Maggie Kuhn started the Gray Panthers in 1970 as a response to her forced retirement at age 65. The mission of the Gray Panthers was to speak out against age discrimination, the Viet Nam war, and other political oppressions. There is no doubt that stereotyping due to age exists in contemporary society. The Gray Panthers call this kind of discrimination "ageism." To be told "you're too old" is as disheartening as to be told "you're too young"; both statements make you a stereotype when in fact you are an individual.
Can't pay your income tax? Didn't pay enough in estimates or had too little withholding? Can't pay at all? Do you feel like you have to choose between the frying pan and the fire? You're not alone, and there are ways to settle up with the IRS.
On Friday, December 18, 2015 President Obama signed the 2016 Consolidated Appropriations Act into law. Among its many provisions it is the permanent extension of the ability for a taxpayer to make qualified charitable distributions (QCDs) from individual retirement accounts (IRAs).
There is still some time left to make some income tax savings moves for 2015.
Make deductible charitable contributions on or before December 31. Taxpayers must be itemizing deductions on IRS Schedule A in order to benefit. Be sure to obtain acknowledgment letters for donations greater than $250. Cancelled checks are insufficient to support a deduction for a gift greater than $250.
President Obama, Nov. 2, signed into law the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015, a two-year budget deal. The legislation raises the federal debt limit and is paid for in part by provisions eliminating two Social Security retirement benefit claiming strategies, a provision to prevent a significant increase in Medicare Part B premiums for some, and provisions that will make it easier for the Internal Revenue Service to audit large partnerships.