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    1. The Skinny on Georgia Tax Bills This Session

      The 2014 Session should be fast but not so furious.  Even with delays from inclement weather, 2014 sine die will occur weeks earlier than last year.  Below are some of the tax bills that I am tracking from the Session that has produced less than the normal proliferation.  Also included are passage probability factors provided by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution Legislative Navigator (http://legislativenavigator.myajc.com/) and those provided by me.

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    2. IRS Changes “Use-It-Or-Lose-It” Rule for Healthcare Flexible Spending Arrangements

      Many employers offer healthcare flexible spending arrangements (health FSAs) as part of their cafeteria benefit plans.  Used by over 14 million people, a health FSA provides a tax-advantaged way for an employee to pay for qualifying medical expenses by making an annual pre-tax account contribution of up to $2,500.  Traditionally, the employee forfeits any money left unspent in the health FSA at the end of the year under what is commonly referred to as the “use-it-or-lose-it” rule.  The employer may provide a grace period of up to 2 ½ months after the end of the year for an employee to ...

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    3. Business License Renewals Now Require E-Verification for Most

      On July 1, 2013, Georgia expanded its E-Verification enrollment requirement to include employers with more than 10 employees. Previously, the E-Verification requirement applied to employers with more than 100 employees.  For some, this requirement may go unnoticed until the local business license is renewed.  Prior to issuing a business occupation certificate (business license), Georgia counties and municipalities are required to obtain an employer’s affidavit attesting to registration and use of the federal E-Verify work authorization program.   Similarly, employers with 10 or fewer employees are required to submit affidavits that they are exempt because of their employment levels.  Employment is ...

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    4. Implications for the new IRS Repair Regulations

      On September 13, 2013, the IRS issued the final version of regulations governing the tax treatment of costs incurred for acquiring, producing, maintaining, and improving tangible property, also known as the “repair regulations.”  Effective for 2014, the final regulations are generally considered to be taxpayer-favorable and provide several safe harbor provisions to help minimize the administrative burden for many taxpayers.  These include:

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    5. New Tax Rules and Rates Increase Need for Year-End Planning

      The 2013 tax year brings a host of changes to the tax laws for individual taxpayers.  Probably the most important changes relate to the tax rates for high income earners.  Beginning January 1, 2013, the top marginal rate goes from 35% to 39.6%.  In addition, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act tax of 3.8% kicks in for high income earners.  Also, the long term capital gains and qualified dividend rates for high income earners goes from 15% to 20%. With all the increases in tax rates, year-end planning becomes that much more important.  Here are just a ...

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    6. Act Fast: Tax Deductions and Credits Set to Expire in 2013

      Over 50 business and individual tax credits and deductions are set to expire at the end of the year.  Congressional action could happen before year end, or even after year end, to extend some or all of the expiring provisions.  Unfortunately we don’t have a crystal ball, so it is important to act now to take advantage of these deductions before December 31, 2013.  The following lists of some of the more common credits and deductions scheduled to vanish.

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    7. Georgia's 2014 Qualified Education Expense Credit - Get 'Em While They Last!

      In 2008, Georgia created student scholarship organizations (SSOs) to which Georgia individual and corporate taxpayers can contribute in exchange for a state income tax credit and federal charitable income tax deduction.  The SSOs use contributions to award scholarships to K-12 students from  public schools so that they can attend private schools chosen by their parents.

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    8. COSO – 2013 Updates to the 1992 Framework | Windham Brannon

      The Committee of Sponsoring Organizations of the Treadway Commission (COSO) released its updated Internal Control – Integrated Framework in May 2013.  The original framework, released in 1992, has been adopted by a significant majority of U.S. public companies subject to the Sarbanes-Oxley Act Section 404 requirements in support of the assessment and reporting on the effectiveness of internal controls over financial reporting.  Since 1992, significant changes support the need to refresh the original framework.  Some circumstances contributing to the need for change include greater use of outsourced service providers, increased regulation and compliance imposed on public companies, reliance on technology ...

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    9. The AICPA’s New Accounting Framework – FRF for SMEs – Is it Right for Your Business?

      Financial statement preparers are faced with an array of options when choosing a financial reporting framework, and now there is one more.  The AICPA’s new Financial Reporting Framework for Small- and Medium-Sized Entities – FRF for SMEs™ is here.  The new acronym will take its place right alongside GAAP (Generally Accepted Accounting Principles) and several other special-purpose frameworks that are available to financial statement preparers.

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    10. What’s Your Exit Strategy as a Small Business Owner? An Employee Stock Option Plan May Be a Powerful Tool for Planning Your Retirement

      As baby boomers approach retirement, many small business owners face the realization that they must transition their role as  “captain of the ship” to someone else.  Not only are they faced with this change, they may also need cash for their retirement plans.  Many business owners have large parts of their net wealth tied up in their business.  Do they sell their business, leverage their business with debt or more debt?  What about an Employee Stock Option Plan (ESOP)?  The often overlooked ESOP strategy has many benefits to the business owner as well as the employees.

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    11. HIPAA Omnibus Rule – Do You Know Your Business Associates?

      Beginning on September 23, 2013, the final Omnibus Rule will require significant changes to HIPAA compliance for covered entities (CEs) and business associates (BAs).  Whereas in prior years when Business Associate Agreements were perceived as a benign contractual line item between a CE and its BAs, now BAs and their subcontractors are directly liable for compliance with the HIPAA Privacy and Security Rules.

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    12. Upcoming Reporting Requirements for Employers

      The Affordable Care Act requires all employers (except those with less than 2 employees on the first day of the plan year) to provide a uniform “four page” summary of benefits and coverage (SBC) to its employees no later than the open enrollment period of plans beginning after September 23, 2013.  For fully insured plans, this notice will be provided to you by your insurance carrier, but it is the employer’s responsibility to see that all employees receive it.  For those plans as of January 1, 2014 and after, that SBC must also provide information on minimum essential coverage ...

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    13. Fantasy Draft

      No, this article is not featuring the best home brew in Atlanta, but you were close. It’s that time of year again when individuals and offices throughout Atlanta and the country are selecting their fantasy football teams and joining football leagues.  They are challenging one another to see who has the most knowledge, the best strategy and the perfectly timed execution. Winning in a fantasy football league takes more than the knowledge of individual players and their projected season point totals.  Winning involves a constant analysis of the current situation in order to make the best decisions to win.

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    14. Does the Dealer (in Real Estate) Always Win?

      Raw land, residential property, commercial property, and industrial property – these are categories people examine when searching for an “investment” in real estate.  Taxpayers investing in real property expect to take advantage of capital gains rates but oftentimes that is not the correct tax treatment and the taxpayer is caught by surprise.  Are you really an investor or would the IRS consider you a dealer?  This dictates your tax treatment and is not a clear as most taxpayers think.  

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    15. How an Interest Charge-Domestic International Sales Corporation Can Benefit U.S. Exporters

      A business that exports products manufactured, produced or grown in the United States may be able to cut the tax bill on its export profits by one-fourth by taking advantage of an Interest Charge-Domestic International Sales Corporation (IC-DISC). The IC-DISC is essentially a statutorily-created “paper” entity that often takes the form of a commission sales agent for the business exporter.  The IC-DISC, once incorporated, files an election statement with the IRS.  The IC-DISC must be capitalized with a minimum of $2,500, but it does not need to have employees or any other assets.  The administration may be performed mostly ...

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    16. Georgia Tax Tribunal Is Already Helping

      Even before its first full trial, the Georgia Tax Tribunal (GTT) is a welcomed option for contested tax assessments. The GTT, the independent, executive branch forum dedicated to tax appeals that resulted from Governor Nathan Deal’s tax reforms, was formed to resolve disputes involving tax decisions by the Georgia Department of Revenue (DOR). Expeditious and consistent settlements ought to follow the specialized tax judge’s first order of business. In that order, Chief Judge Charles Beaudrot remanded all cases pending before the GTT to the Georgia DOR for a 90-day settlement period. Because an independent expert is now in ...

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    17. Exit Stage Left

      What’s your end game when it comes to your business? As I like to say, all owners will exit their business at some time, either leaving vertically or horizontally. While it’s true you can’t always control when and how that happens, but you can be prepared with a solid exit … The post Exit Stage Left appeared first on Windham Brannon.

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    18. Lessons Learned From Employee Fraud | Windham Brannon

      As the Atlanta Journal-Constitution first reported in November 2012 and followed up in April of this year,  an employee of the Woodruff Arts Center  defrauded the organization of $1.438 million over the course of five years. After the dust from the investigation settled, it was determined that the employee, the center’s former Director of Facilities, had in fact stolen roughly $1.1 million between 2005 and 2012. The fraud was discovered after the employee’s departure for unrelated matters, at which time a supervisor raised questions while reviewing some of the suspicious invoices.

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    73-96 of 105 « 1 2 3 4 5 »
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