Tuesday, August 14, 2018

529 Plans

If you have college-bound children or grandchildren then you may be interested in establishing a qualified tuition plan for them.  These plans are known as 529 plans, so named after the IRS code section establishing the plans.  You can contribute to a qualified prepared tuition plan or a savings account established for a specific beneficiary to help pay for that beneficiary’s college tuition.  While the contributions are not tax deductible, the funds grow and earn income tax-free.  When the designated beneficiary withdraws funds to pay for qualified educator expenses, no taxes are paid on the income!  Qualified education expenses include those for any college university, vocational school or post-secondary educational institutions that are eligible to participate in student aid programs administered by the U.S. Department of education.  Beginning in 2018, the funds can also be used to pay for qualified higher education expenses such as private or religious elementary or secondary schools. 

How to get started? Every state has their own 529 plans and you are not limited to the plan in your state, so research the state plans to find the one best suited to the needs of your designated beneficiary.  If you would like assistance in learning more about Qualified Tuition programs please contact the tax professionals at Ken R. Ashworth & Associates.

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

A Paralegals day!

What's a day in the life of a Paralegal? BUSY! An integral role in the "day in the life of a law office" for certain, but generally not the glamorous life of Erin Brockovich! A paralegal performs many tasks essential to the day-to-day routines and procedures in support of the practice of law by attorneys.  Typically, in a day, a paralegal might accomplish a wide variety of tasks, such as Contact and conference with clients; Update master calendars with dates for client meetings, court hearings, deadlines relevant to litigation, business and tax work; Case planning, development and management; Draft, revise and finalize litigation and probate pleadings, trust agreements, contracts and correspondence; Perform Legal research, analysis and summarization of various documents; and facilitate filings with the various levels of the Federal, State, Justice and Municipal courts, as well as Federal and State administrative agencies. A paralegal might also attend court or administrative hearings and trials, depositions, executions of wills and trusts, real estate escrow closings, and just might possibly -on the rare occasion-have an occasional lunch date with colleagues and co-workers!

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Social Security benefits

Often Social Security benefits are a mystery especially when a spouse passes.  The surviving spouse is entitled to a benefit equal to 100% of the deceased benefits as long as the survivor wants until their full retirement age.  At 60 you could collect a survivor benefit but the benefit will be reduced.  What that means is do an analysis of what is best for you when considering taking a survivor benefit from Social Security.  Yes, it may be hard to understand but once you know what to do, you will rest easier.

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

New Medicare Cards

Medicare has begun to mail new ID cards to its millions of members.  The replacement cards will have a new assigned ID number.  These cards don't have your social security number.  The process of mailing new cards will take about a year.

It is important to note that scammers have found another new way to steal from the elderly.  The scammer calls and states you must pay a processing fee before you receive a new card.  Not True!  They may state you are due a refund on old cards so you give them your bank account number so they can deposit the refund into your account ( never give out your bank account number over the phone).

Friday, July 20, 2018

New Tax Rate "C" Corporations

Clients have asked and maybe hoped that under the new tax law "C" corporations no longer have what is considered a double taxation problem.

The new tax rate for "C" corporations is a flat rate of 21%.  Before the new tax laws "C" corporations were taxed at a graduated rate ranging from 15% to 35%.  The dividends paid to the shareholders are still taxed to them at their individual tax rates, so in fact "double taxation" has not gone away.

529 Plans

If you have college-bound children or grandchildren then you may be interested in establishing a qualified tuition plan for them.  These pl...