News

Fill The Pantry for The Community of Hope 11-15-2018

As our 100-year anniversary celebration begins to wind down, we are hosting a food drive for The Community of Hope.  The food drive will last through the end of November & items can be dropped off at our Montgomery or Wetumpka office locations.

The Community of Hope assists many families throughout the River Region.  During this holiday season, The Community of Hope’s pantry is running low.  Please consider donating any of the following non-perishable items:

Corn, beans, peas, squash, yams, butterbeans, collards, turnip greens, tomatoes rice, black eye peas, pinto beans, pasta, crackers, ham, salmon, tuna, chicken, roast beef, ravioli, chili, soups, pop tarts, oatmeal,  grits, breakfast bars, powdered milk, juice, toilet paper, soap, toothpaste and deodorant.  Monetary donations will also be accepted.  

For more information about The Community of Hope check out their website at communityofhopemontgomery.org.

We are grateful for all that choose to participate in helping families during this holiday season.

 

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Does Your Paycheck Need A Checkup? 11-01-2018

By:  Shana M. MacDonald

The IRS estimates that 21% of taxpayers will be under-withheld due to the new withholding tables that went into effect this year. This may lead to a higher than expected balance due on your 2018 federal income tax return and possibly an underpayment penalty as well.

To address this, the IRS is encouraging taxpayers to do a “paycheck checkup” to reassess their 2018 withholding. In doing so, taxpayers will need to take into account the sweeping changes imposed by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA). Some of the key changes that you will need to consider in evaluating your withholding include: 1 reduced income tax rates along with expanded tax brackets; 2 near doubling of the standard deduction; 3 elimination of personal and dependent exemptions; 4 increased child tax credit; and 5 numerous limitations and repeals enacted on itemized deductions.

The new withholding tables released by the IRS in January of this year are intended to reflect the changes from TCJA and produce approximate withholding amounts for those with simple tax situations, generally reducing the amount withheld from employees’ paychecks. However, this lower withholding combined with the loss of many itemized deductions could leave some taxpayers significantly under-withheld on their federal income taxes – particularly those with high income or more complex tax situations. For this reason, we recommend that you review your personal situation (and your pay stub) to avoid a surprise tax bill and the dreaded penalties and interest that could come with it.

To aid in this process, there is a free withholding calculator available on the IRS website which can help you determine whether changes to your federal withholding are necessary. Individuals with more complicated tax situations would be wise to also consult with their tax professional to discuss the specific implications of TCJA on their personal tax return.

Whether you decide to do it yourself or seek the advice of a professional, it is imperative that you perform this check-up sooner rather than later because the longer you wait, the fewer pay periods there will be to apply the change and the more impact it will have on your paycheck. Taxpayers who find that their withholding does, in fact, require an adjustment will need to submit a new Form W-4 to their employer as soon as possible.

If you have any questions regarding tax reform, tax withholding, or tax planning, please contact our office as we will gladly assist you in understanding the effects of TCJA and how to navigate our ever-changing tax landscape.

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6 Cool Ways to Save Taxes during the Hot Summer Months 05-28-2018

Before you settle into the lazy days of summer, it may be a good idea to meet with your tax advisor to brainstorm ways to cut your taxes. The tax rules underwent a major overhaul last winter. Here are some ideas for individuals and small business owners to consider in the coming months. Continue reading


Capital Gains Rates Before and After the New Tax Law 04-23-2018

The tax brackets for long-term capital gains and qualified dividends are changing under the new tax law. For 2018 through 2025, these brackets aren't linked to the ordinary-income tax brackets for individuals. Here are the new cutoffs, along with 1) how the brackets have changed for trusts, estates and dependents subject to the kiddie tax, 2) what's happened to the 3.8% net investment income tax, and 3) how short-term capital gains are taxed. Continue reading


Save or Shred? Follow These Recordkeeping Guidelines 04-16-2018

When tax season ends, many individuals and businesses are unsure which records they should retain and which ones can be thrown in the shredder. Here are some best practices to prevent your paper and digital records from mounting up, while retaining them long enough to prove your tax return information in the event of an audit or to file an amended return if you overlook tax breaks. Continue reading


Are Roth IRAs Still Beneficial under the New Tax Law? 03-12-2018

Roth IRAs can be a smart way for you to save for retirement. And temporary tax rate cuts for 2018 through 2025 under the new tax law could persuade some people to convert traditional IRAs into Roth IRAs sooner rather than later. But the new law also contains a potential pitfall if an account's value unexpectedly falls after it's converted. Here's what you need to know before jumping headfirst into a Roth IRA or a Roth conversion. Continue reading


Close-Up on Mortgage Interest Deduction Rules 02-19-2018

Unfortunately, the new tax law places new limits on home mortgage interest deductions for the 2018 through 2025 tax years. But the changes only affect homeowners with larger first mortgages and those with home equity debt. Are you in danger of losing some of your home mortgage interest deduction under the new law? Read this article to find the answer. Continue reading


New Law Revamps the Kiddie Tax 01-22-2018

The so-called "kiddie tax" was designed to discourage high-income taxpayers from shifting income to children in lower tax brackets to reduce the family's overall tax bill. The kiddie tax can cause a portion of a dependent child's net unearned income to be taxed at higher rates than the regular rates for single taxpayers. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act changes the kiddie tax rate structure for 2018 through 2025. Here's how. Continue reading


How Might the New Tax Reform Law Affect You? 12-25-2017

The new tax law has finally passed and the changes generally kick in in 2018. President Trump and Republican members of Congress say it will bring $3.2 trillion in tax cuts. But some individual taxpayers are skeptical. Everyone's situation is unique and not everyone will come out ahead. This article provides an example of how it might affect your taxes in 2018, if you're still eligible to itemize deductions. Continue reading


Landmark Tax Reform Bill Passes 12-25-2017

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act is the biggest tax reform package in over 30 years. With tax filing season right around the corner, business and individual taxpayers, with the help of their tax advisors, are scrambling to understand how the changes will affect them. Here are some key elements of the new law. Continue reading