Monday, December 05, 2011

Give to the Right Charity

We are in the season of giving and many taxpayers would like to provide assistance to those less fortunate than they are. While charitable giving is always good, there are however some things taxpayers should know before giving their money, time, and other items to a charity. Here's a short video with the details. Enjoy.

The Tech Accountant

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Travel Receipts Got You Sour as a Lemon??? Make Lemonade

I hope everyone had a great holiday this past week. If you were one of the many people traveling this past week, I am sure you have quite a few receipts from your trip that you may want to organize to see how much you spent over the holiday.

Or maybe you are a constant business traveler that is tired of trying to keep up with all of your receipts when you travel for business.

If this describes you, I am sure that the time it takes to organize and tally up what you spent, and where has you as sour as a lemon.

Here's a quick video on a new web-based product with a corresponding smart phone app that can make lemonade out of those receipts. Let me know what you think.

The Tech Accountant

Update: Lifelock has acquired Lemon to expand in the the mobile arena. A new app to play with on Andriod and iOS.

Monday, November 14, 2011

A Bonus for Small Biz

Thanks to the IRS, small businesses can deduct the cost of bonuses they pay to employees even if they don't know which employees will receive a year-end bonus. Listen here for details:

Tax Bonus for Small Biz (mp3)

The Tech Accountant

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Kids Say the Wildest Things

Here's a cool video that explains what it is like to be a tax accountant....well maybe in the "old" world of accounting. Personally I could only relate my past experiences to what the kids describe in the video. The "new" world of accounting is so much more exciting.

So check out the video, send it to your accountant and see if they can relate.

The Tech Accountant

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Warren Buffet and Jay-Z preach financial literacy

Here's a coolcartoon video of rapper Jay-Z and Warren Buffet teaching kids good money management. Enjoy.

The Tech Accountant

Friday, September 09, 2011

Summer is Over - Time for Reports Cards and Football

The summer is almost over, and school is back in session. If you have kids, you’ve probably already met the teachers. You may have even enjoyed college football and NFL starting recently.

It’s probably been a long time since you’ve sat in a classroom yourself. But school is never out if you’re looking to make the most of your money in today’s challenging economy.

Here are some classes I'm considering teaching this fall to keep more of your hard earned money in your pocket. Let me know what you think:

• Math 1040: Where are tax rates headed?

• History 2010: Lessons from last year’s mistakes?

• Social Studies 463: Write off meals and entertainment

• Chemistry 162: Is there a “secret formula” for paying less?

• Anatomy 213: What’s the best strategy for healthcare benefits?

If you want to keep the most of what you make, you can’t wait ‘til finals or game day for answers. You need to study now and have a playbook ready just like the football players and coaches. Putting tax-wise ideas and strategies in place today could help avoid an ugly surprise when “Report Cards” and the "Tax Playoffs" come due April 15!

The Tech Accountant

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Know the Rules For Employees and IC's

There is a difference when terminating and employee versus and independent contractor (IC). Better know the rules.

The Tech Accountant

Travelers RMplusonline

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Protect Your Auto Deduction in an Audit

Small business owners (SBO) will be under more scrunity now that the IRS has increased their enforcement efforts in an attempt to close the tax gap. What this means is that audits for SBO's are on the rise. One way to ensure that you are not caught in an audit. is to take a proactive approach to your tax situation and not a reactive one.

Here is a taxpayer that took a reactive approach to her tax situation and the outcome of their dealing with the IRS (this may hit home for the real estate professionals out there). You can read the entire court case here or get the quick recap below. Enjoy.

Protect Your Auto Deduction (mp3)

The Tech Accountant

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Washington Changes Challenge the IRS

Challenges are currently occurring at the IRS. No I am not referring to the time it takes for taxpayers to get assistance from the IRS or even the TAS (Taxpayer Advocate Service). I am talking about the problems the IRS is having with implementing many of the new tax law changes that have been enacted in recent legislation.

I had a chance to review a report from the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration and there are currently about 100 new tax provisions that the IRS will have to implement.

Did you know that the IRS is currently dealing with one of the largest tax law changes in the past 20 years? With all the changes on the horizon, the IRS has increased their collection and enforcement personnel (one would think that IRS would increase their efforts to implement the tax changes) and not in enforcement.

What does this mean? Basically that IRS is increasing their collection and enforcement efforts on taxpayers and small businesses (the number of tax returns examined increased for individual, corporate and S-Corps over the past 5 years). Bottom line, the IRS is getting tough on the taxpayer.

The best thing for taxpayers to do is to take a proactive approach to their tax planning and know what to expect in the future. Many of the tax changes can swing in favor of taxpayers and small business owners so now is the time to start thinking about tax savings and not getting caught in any IRS traps.

The Tech Accountant

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Airline Tax Turnover

I am sure many can remember the good old Charlie Brown episodes where Charlie Brown is attempting to kick the football and Lucy is the holder. Well we all know what happens, poor Charlie Brown thinks that he is going to finally kick that pigskin but right when he gets up to the ball, Lucy yanks it away and Charlie Brown falls on his face.

Well that scenario just played out in Congress recently in regards to the airline excise tax and potential refunds to small businesses and consumers and we already know who the characters were played by:

Lucy – Congress/IRS/FAA
Football – Excise Tax Refunds
And of course…
Charlie Brown – The Taxpayers

Yes folks all those potential refunds that many were expecting will never be sent. According to the IRS,

“passengers who purchased tickets prior to July 23 and traveled between July 23 and the date of enactment of today’s legislation are not entitled to a refund of the airline ticket excise tax.”

I guess there had to be a review from the booth on this one. Let me know your thoughts.

The Tech Accountant

Monday, July 25, 2011

Summer Travel Tax Free...Until Congress acts

Thanks to all the "waffling" in Congress, taxpayers that have late summer  travel plans may be able to take advantage of a tax free airline holiday similar to many of the sales tax holidays for back to school. With all the delays in Congress regarding the debt ceiling, Congress has yet to approve the budget for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

How much can you save on summer travel and when does the tax savings start? Get all the details here:

Tax Holiday on Summer Travel (mp3)

The Tech Accountant

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Let Technology Wear Some of Your Hats

Small business owners and entrepreneurs all know that starting and operating your own business is a rewarding but tough experience. Typically when a small business is in the start-up or growth stage, the owners will attempt to wear all the hats from being the sales manager to the bookkeeper. Although this will give a small business owner a wealth of experience in operations and processes, could their time be better spent doing what they do best?

Many small business owners want to know how they can break away from doing the back office functions and most times the solution is to hire someone to do the work or outsource. Sometimes when this solution is implemented, the costs are more than the benefit and the small business owner is back at square one.

The new way to get operational tasks done is to use technology in conjunction with and employee or contractor. This way a small business owner can continue to the be the backbone of the economy and cut their operational and overhead costs considerably.

Let's take marketing and public relations for example. In the past small business owners could not compete with their larger counterparts due to the high cost of websites, customer relationship management and public relations companies, tv, and radio, etc. Nowadays a small business owner can build their own website (or outsource) with WordPress, use social media sites and apps like Facebook and Twitter for public relations and CRM, broadcast themselves on YouTube, and podcasts, and get paid instantly with PayPal, Google Checkout and others.

These are just a few ways technology can help a small business owner cut costs and focus on what they do best. Feel free to post your ideas too.

The Tech Accountant

Saturday, July 16, 2011

The IRS Gives Notice

In an effort to collect on the 300 billion plus  tax gap, the IRS will be ramping up the amount of notices they send to everyone. Currently there are about seven different kinds of notices that the IRS will send to taxpayers and small business owners and most of designated with the initials "CP" and a number. The CP stands for Collection Process meaning that the taxpayer' account is in collections with the IRS. Get more details of the different notices here:

Notice what the #IRS is doing (mp3)

If a taxpayer receives any of the notices outline in the audio, the first step is to get a copy of the tax return in question and review it. If there is a discrepancy, be sure to contact the IRS as soon as possible to get the issues resolved. There may be a chance that interests and penalties have accrued on the taxpayer's account, so be sue to speak with your tax professional on ways to have the penalties abated.

Be on the lookout in your mailbox taxpayers and small business owners, there may be a chance that the IRS notices you.

The Tech Accountant

Sunday, July 10, 2011

IRS will take students money

That's right students. If you get a summer job, the IRS is sure to take a chunk of your hard earned cash. If you have not already gotten your first paycheck from your summer job, then you will really want to know who that guy FICA is and why he (and the rest of his friends Fed, State and SS) are taking your money.

Here is a quick podcast to explain the what a student should be aware of when they start that summer job.

IRS wants your summer paycheck students. (mp3)

I hope these tips help you this summer students. Have a great summer.

The Tech Accountant

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

Fill Your College Coffers

If you are a college student who has had a hard time finding a job this summer, then there may be another way for you to generate the much needed funs to pay for your college tuition and other needs. Surly a college student (and their parents) engages in one of the following activities:

  • Go Shopping
  • Go Out to Eat
  • Go Grocery Shopping
  • Hang with Friends
If you do any or all of the previous, then here is a quick video on how you can do those activities and still save for college, pay off current student loans or even pay for other college costs.

So if you were not able to find that perfect summer job to give you the money you were looking for, don't fret, just go out and shop.

The Tech Accountant

Sunday, June 26, 2011

3 Cool Apps for Small Biz's

The web and social media are definitely changing the way we do business and it would appear that the government does not want to be left behind. First the IRS introduced their informational videos for small biz owners and the self employed, then followed suit with a Facebook page (also a FB page for tax professionals). Now the IRS and other governmental agencies continue to throw their hats into the social media scene, with some rather neat apps lately.

The IRS, U.S. Department of Labor and the Small Business Administration all have introduced smart phone apps that allow small biz owners, and their employees access to governmental services while on the go. Here's is a quick video about their new apps.

Do you think that the new apps will provide small biz owners and taxpayers with faster more efficient access to governmental resources? Feel free to let us know your thoughts.

The Tech Accountant

Thursday, June 23, 2011

IR-2011-69: IRS Increases Mileage Rate to 55.5 Cents per Mile

IR-2011-69: IRS Increases Mileage Rate to 55.5 Cents per Mile

The IRS has increased the standard mileage rate for the rest of the year starting on July 1st to %55.5 cents a mile. The standard rate is used to deduct the costs of operating a vehicle for business or other purposes. The IRS attributes the increase to the rise in gas prices and their effort is to offset taxpayers costs.

The IRS also increased the rate for deducting medical and moving expenses to $23.5 cents per mile. The rate for charitable mileage remains the same.

Taxpayers who use their automobiles for business purposes may also want to track actual mileage to ensure that they are reaping the most tax benefit. There are special rules regarding actual versus standard mileage rates so be sure to speak with your tax professional for additional guidance.

The Tech Accountant

Friday, June 17, 2011

DOL Timesheet App for iPhone

Travelers RMplusonline

Good ole Uncle Sam is at it again.

There's a new app for the iPhone that many small biz owners may not be to thrilled about. The DOL has recently released an iPhone app that will allow hourly employees to track their own hours to ensure that they are paid the correct amount. This may open up a can of worms for many small biz owners who may not have accurate employment records and may also increase the amount of fraudulent wage compliants filed with the DOL.

Take a look at the article and let me know your thoughts about this new app. Also if you have an iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad be sure to download the app and try it out for yourself and let us know what you think of it.

The Tech Accountant

Saturday, June 11, 2011

15 Tech Factors to Watch For

Small biz owners and consumers both will like this quick (about 7mins or so) video that provides 15 tech factors to watch for and a look into the future of the internet and how we all will use it. Much of the video confirms the information that I heard recently at a social media seminar regarding the growth of social networks and how consumers use the internet.

Watch the video here

What does this mean for a small biz owner? Technology will be an important and integral part of your marketing, operational, and long term strategy. Small biz's will look more to social networks for customers and clients, using cloud services can keep the small biz owner connected and by embracing technology your small biz will be better positioned for growth.

So what do you think small biz owner's? Are you currently using technology (social media, smart phones, cloud computing) in your small business?

Look forward to hearing from you.

The Tech Accountant

Thursday, June 02, 2011

SBA Offers iPhone App for Small Businesses

SBA Offers iPhone App for Small Businesses

Here's a cool way to stay interacted with the SBA and help get your small biz up and running. I just downloaded it and will play around with it today. Should be a great app since Palo Alto is know for there great business plan software.

The Tech Accountant

Thursday, May 26, 2011

9 Factors to Legitimize Your Biz

Recently I was privileged to speak at the Atlanta Professional Business Network (APBN) event celebrating National Small Business Week and the topic was how entrepreneurs can legitimize their businesses and minimize the chances of an IRS audit. We went over quite a bit of material that evening, but here are the major points:

According to the IRS, whether or not an activity is presumed to be operated for profit requires an analysis of the facts and circumstances of each case. Deciding whether a taxpayer operates an activity with an actual and honest profit motive typically involves applying nine non-exclusive factors contained in Treas. Reg. § 1.183-2(b). Those factors are:

1. the manner in which the taxpayer carried on the activity,

2. the expertise of the taxpayer or his or her advisers,

3. the time and effort expended by the taxpayer in carrying on the activity,

4. the expectation that the assets used in the activity may appreciate in value,

5. the success of the taxpayer in carrying on other similar or dissimilar activities,

6. the taxpayer's history of income or loss with respect to the activity,

7. the amount of occasional profits, if any, which are earned,

8. the financial status of the taxpayer, and

9. elements of personal pleasure or recreation.

No one factor controls, other factors may be considered, and the mere fact that the number of factors indicating the lack of a profit objective exceeds the number indicating the presence of a profit objective (or vice versa) is not conclusive. A profit objective in an earlier year does not automatically provide a taxpayer a blank check with regard to losses incurred in later years.

The bottom line for small business owners is to keep good records, operate in a businesslike manner and have a profit motive as your goal.

The Tech Accountant

Saturday, May 07, 2011

3 Ways to Fight Identity Theft & Tax Fraud

As many taxpayers continue to get over the tax filing season, there are quite a few still waiting to hear from the IRS regarding their tax refunds. Most of the time the refund claim can be tracked by using the IRS’s “Where’s My Refund” system on their site but for those taxpayers that have been the victim of identity theft; locating their refund may be a bit more challenging.

Recently in the Tampa Bay area, there were numerous cases of identity theft where someone had used the taxpayers’ names and social security numbers to file fraudulent tax returns claiming refunds. Typical cases of identity theft and tax return information include complex schemes that either intercept taxpayer information via the mail or online email phishing communication that tries to get the taxpayer to enter their personal information on what appears to be an IRS site. Currently the IRS and the Postal Service investigate any cases of identity theft and tax information.

So what’s a taxpayer to do if they think they are a victim of identity theft and tax return information? Here are 3 Steps one should take:

1. If the IRS contacts you that your identity has been used for tax fraud, respond to the correspondence ASAP. Identity theft and tax issue notices will outline if more than one return has been filed with your information or that you have wages from an employer that you do not know.

2. If you have not been contacted by the IRS, and you think that you have been a victim of identity theft and tax fraud, submit a copy of your identification, a police report detailing the incident, and Form 14039 to the IRS.

3. Contact the IRS Identity Protection Specialized Unit at 1-800-908-4490

Identity theft and tax fraud are on the rise currently and taxpayers must do everything they can to protect their personal information from getting in the hand of unscrupulous persons. By taking a proactive approach, the risk of losing one’s identity can be minimized.

The Tech Accountant

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

3 Steps to a Smoother Tax Season

Now that tax season is over, many small biz owners are getting back into the groove of running their operations and focusing on the rest of the year. As tax season was winding down, I had a great deal of small biz owners approach me and ask what they can do to make tax season move a bit more smoothly next year. The majority of the problems that small biz owners are facing are closing their books on time, organizing their important documents for tax season, and getting those documents to their tax professional for tax preparation.

Usually the answer is better organization and proactive tax planning throughout the year, but after I make that comment, most small biz owners look at me with a blank stare. Now I would like to provide a bit more detail regarding how to streamline their business operations and stay on top of everything before tax season comes back around. Here are three steps to getting your small biz ready for next tax season:

1. Use a computerized accounting system
2. Scan important documents
3. Use a file storing system

Listen here for more details on getting your biz ready for next filing season.


These are just a few of the things that a small business owner can use to streamline their business operations and get them ready for a smooth tax season next year. With a little assistance, a small biz owner can have a less taxing season next year.

The Tech Accountant

Sunday, April 03, 2011

More Business or More Work

Do you want more work or more business?

Recently I was reading some comments in one of the LinkedIn groups I belong to regarding building your business and controlling the growth and one of the comments came from a husband and wife outfit (he handles the marketing and she handles operations). The husband stated that his wife wanted more business and not more work and the comment got me thinking “Do small business owners know the difference?”

I personally get asked similar questions by all kinds of people and organizations. Whether it is the survey from a vendor catering to small businesses, or a new person I just met at a networking function, the question always arises if my firm is seeking more work. Let’s take a closer look at the difference between more business and more work.

More Work

More work refers to a small business operation that the owner completes all or a majority of the tasks themselves. This type of business operation is okay for a start-up business. However, if and when a small business owner wants to take their business to the next level, the business owner must duplicate themselves and train other people to do part of the tasks or complete everything so that the business owner’s own efforts are used elsewhere.

More Business

Typically a small business can only take on more business once they have duplicated themselves efficiently and effectively and the majority of their efforts are focused on bringing in more “work” for others to do. If a small business owner is focused on completing the work, there is little time left to cultivate relationships and bring in more business. Hiring employees or outsourcing part of your business operations will allow the small business owner more time to grow their business.

So if you are a small business owner that wears all the hats in your operation, there’s a likely chance that you are taking on more work than business and once you reach your own personal capacity to do work, your business will have difficulty growing.

Let me know your thoughts on work versus business and feel free to post your comments.

The Tech Accountant

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

IRS helps you save for retirement

Here’s a great way to save for retirement and the IRS is helping you do it. Typically if you contribute funds to an IRA, a taxpayer can claim an above the line deduction for their contribution. A contribution may also make a taxpayer eligible for the retirement savings contribution credit. Listen below for details on how a contribution to an IRA will save you money on taxes.


So how is the IRS helping the taxpayer with IRA contributions this year?

Due to Emancipation Day (a holiday in the District of Columbia) taxpayers have a few extra days to make contributions to an IRA. The holiday falls on April 15th, and the IRS will be closed that day thus moving the date for making contributions to an IRA (and filing your tax return). Be sure to speak to your tax advisor to see how an IRA contribution can benefit you.

The Tech Accountant

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

5 Taxpayers the IRS is Targeting

There was a great deal of news that occurred over this past weekend but one of the more important stories was probably the deal between AT&T and T-Mobile to merge pending government approval. This will make AT&T the largest mobile provider and will affect a great deal of customers. There is however a little bit of other news that many tax payers may want to know regarding a new list out from the IRS.

According to the IRS, they are targeting specific groups of taxpayers for audits this year and taxpayers need to ensure that their return will not be flag by the IRS’s “Discriminant Function”. The 5 areas where the IRS is putting more focus is:

1. Schedule A Filers – Those that itemized their deductions

2. Schedule C – Those solo entrepreneurs that are not corporations

3. Schedule E – Those that own rental properties

4. Cash Basis Businesses – Those businesses that only use cash and not credit

5. Sales of Assets and other investments – Those taxpayers that have investments or assets for investments

What’s a taxpayer to do to ensure that their return is not flagged by the IRS? The most important factor is keeping good records that proved your deductions or credits are valid and that you qualify for them. Keeping good records can also help if your tax return is selected for an audit. Audits go a bit more smoothly when your paperwork is organized and typically result is no change or maybe even a little more money back for you.

The Tech Accountant

Thursday, March 17, 2011

IRS Videos for All

As the IRS continues toward a more technology focused operation, taxpayers will be glad to know that the IRS recently added videos to their tools to assist taxpayers with a myriad of tax issues. Topics include disaster information, education, filing and paying taxes, IRS Audits, IRS Liens, post filing issues, recordkeeping, retirement plans and scams & fraud. The videos are broken down by individuals, small businesses, tax professionals, and governments. The IRS has also provided a section for those taxpayers that speak Spanish. The videos can be found here and typically run from 3 to 15 minutes.

This is another resource for taxpayers (and tax professionals) to use to understand their tax situations.

The Tech Accountant

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Your data is safer in the clouds

Many small biz owners are still on the fence about taking their biz operations to the clouds. In a recent interview with Michal Lev-Ram for, Google’s enterprise chief Dave Girouard provides some compelling reasons for small biz owners to reconsider their stance. Most small biz owners cite security and uptime as their biggest resistance to the cloud here’s what Girouard had to say about both issues:

“Our belief is that your data is safer inside Google than it is inside your own computers. But we are doing all sorts of things to make sure our user data is protected.”

In regards to cloud system’s uptime, Girouard stated:

“There's no system that's prefect and no company that's perfect and we certainly aren't. In 2010 Gmail had 99.984% uptime.”

His statements got me wondering if those small biz owners that were resisting the cloud had procedures in place to protect their data and if their procedures had a 100% uptime. I posed the question of the cloud in one of my accounting discussion boards to get small biz accountants’ take on the matter and many of them were still resisting the cloud. One accountant even said that she used a portable hard drive that she took back and forth with her to the office.

Although the portable drive is a great way to save and backup your mission critical data, it should only be a small step in your backup and data warehousing plan. Which brings me to another point Girouard made in the article that cloud based companies are more agile than their “old school” counterparts. When asked about the advantages of Google’s cloud services versus those of other major software vendors, Girouard stated that since they are a 100% web company it is easier for them to adapt to the changes in the marketplace as they happen.

This is true for any business. Even a small business can be more nimble than their competitors if they build their business infrastructure in the cloud. Feel free to read the article and draw your own conclusions and opinions and post them as a response to this blog post. Would love to hear your thoughts.

The Tech Accountant

Thursday, March 10, 2011

3 Ways Small Biz Owners Can Use Tablets

Up until recently, the sign that a small biz owner was upwardly mobile was a laptop or even a netbook. You would go to the local coffee shop and see everyone deeply engaged in their work or online meetings via their portable computers. Fast forward a few years to the present and laptop and netbooks in the coffee shop are a thing of the past like Starbucks “secret menu” items.

Now when you go into a coffee establishment, everyone is swiping away multi-tasking on their tablets. Tablets are making quite an impression in the consumer market and many larger biz’s are using them in some very interesting ways. Small biz owners can also enjoy the benefits of using a tablet instead of your clunky laptop. Here are three ways:

1. Remote Desktop – Need access to your laptop or desktop back in the office? With a tablet and remote desktop app (Like GoToMyPC) you can access your PC or Mac back in the office and remain fully connected.

2. Presentations – Need to watch or join a web conference or presentation? Use a web conferencing app like Webex or GoToMeeting to join online meetings while away from your office.

3. Accepting Payments – Need to improve your cash flow by accepting payments away from the office? There are quite a few apps out there that can assist with this task. A few that come to mind are PayPal, Sage Mobile Payments and Intuit GoPayment.

These are just three reasons I came up with for using a tablet from my own business processes (Feel free to add more). The beauty is most of the apps mentioned are free and coupled with the fact that you don’t have to carry around that cumbersome laptop, a tablet may be a wise choice for your small biz.

The Tech Accountant

Monday, March 07, 2011

Is the IRS "Lien"ing on You?

The IRS recently announced changes to the lien filing process and OIC (Offer in Compromise) changes that are suppose to help taxpayers meet their tax obligations. The changes are the following:

1. The dollar threshold for when liens are generally issued is being increased, to at least $10,000 in back taxes. The previous threshold was $5,000.

2. The IRS will make it easier to withdraw a lien once a person pays off their tax debt. However, the withdrawal is not automatic. Once full payment is made, you will have to request the lien be removed. To speed up the withdrawal process, the IRS will streamline its procedures to allow collection personnel to withdraw liens.

3. The IRS will withdraw liens in most cases where a taxpayer signs up for a direct debit installment agreement, which means the IRS will pull the money directly out of your bank account. If you currently have an installment agreement but switch to a direct debit agreement, you can request that the lien be withdrawn. There is a catch. The IRS says liens will be withdrawn after a probationary period to make sure the direct debit is working.

4. Small businesses with $25,000 or less in unpaid taxes can now get an installment agreement over 24 months. It used to be that only small businesses with under $10,000 in liabilities could participate.

5. The IRS will revise the Offer in Compromise rules to allow participation by taxpayers with annual incomes up to $100,000. In addition, those with a tax liability of up to $50,000 may now submit an offer, double the old limit of $25,000 or less.

The Tech Accountant

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Want a Big Tax Refund...Here's How

Thanks to a fellow tax colleague of mine, here is a funny video that will hopefully educate many about how taxes work and why your tax refund is your money to begin with. Enjoy

The Tech Accountant

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Form 1099 Repealed Update

Well Congress has been working hard debating on how they will repeal the Form 1099 reporting requirements that were enacted last year, but the details currently are rather confusing for small business owners and landlords.

Just to give you an update on what's going on, there are two bills in the House and one in the Senate that are attempting to address the repeal of the Form 1099 reporting requirements and here is a brief overview of each:


For more details regarding the Form 1099 laws that were passed last year and how they currently affect small business owners and landlords be sure to watch the video on our website.

The Tech Accountant

Sunday, February 20, 2011

4 Ways Cloud Computing Can Improve Your Small Biz

Recently I had the pleasure of reading a survey by Gartner Inc. regarding the future of cloud computing for large scale businesses. According to the survey, by 2015 around 50% of the Global 1000 businesses will use cloud computing for many of their revenue generating processes. That got me to thinking, “How can the small biz owner benefit from the cloud?”I came up with four ways that I think the cloud can improve a small biz’s operations. Here are four reasons that I could think of that make cloud computing a viable option for a small biz owner:

1. Cloud computing make a small business more agile because the owner can utilize IT resources in a faster more efficient manner. Gone are the days of setup and implementation of on premise software. A small biz owner can sign up for a cloud service and be up and running that same day.

2. Cloud computing allows small biz owners scaled economies providing them better use of the resources that they pay for. Small biz owners can have better control over their resources because the features that they pay for are the only ones that they need. In the current small biz environment, many software resources are being underutilized or not used at all.

3. Cloud computing makes small biz owners more productive. With anywhere anytime access, cloud resources allow small biz owners the ability to work from anywhere and be “open” virtually anytime.

4. Cloud computing will improve a small biz owner’s bottom line. With cloud computing being at the forefront of the new way of doing business, there will be a great deal of entrants into the market all competing for the small biz dollar. Vendors will also add more benefits to their cloud offerings expanding the growth of cloud computing making the current model of operations a thing of the past.

These are just a few reasons that I came up with that make operating your small biz in the cloud an option that a small biz owner may want to investigate. Feel free to post your opinions regarding cloud computing and small biz. Would love to hear your thoughts.

The Tech Accountant

Friday, February 18, 2011

10 Crazy Tax Deductions

Here's a little humor from an article that I came across yesterday while going through my e-mails for the day. I would hope that it brings a little light to your Friday during this busy, stressful tax season with all the electronic filing delays.

Here is the usual disclaimer of not trying any of these tax deductions at home. Enjoy

10 Crazy Tax Deductions

The Tech Accountant

Saturday, February 12, 2011

3 Steps to Digitize your Documents

I am always looking for better ways to accomplish everyday tasks for small biz owners and individuals. One problem that many face is how to keep, and organize important documents so that they are readily available when needed. Thanks to technology, we can now digitize our documents and keep them in the clouds thus making our desk space clean and clear of clutter. Here are three steps to take the documents from your desk to the clouds:

1. Start using or purchase a scanner – Scanners have come a long way since the days of the basic flat bed (although one of those would still work). Scanners have better image quality, are faster, and come with more features than the early years. Scanning your documents allows you to keep a digital image of the documents and save it for later use. Depending on your needs, there are multi-purpose machines, or scan only machines for those who will have larger paper workloads.

2. Save documents to the cloud – By saving your documents in the cloud, you have another level of protection in the case that your hard drive is stolen, corrupted or destroyed due to a disaster. Again depending on your needs, there are quite a few vendors that offer low-cost or even free cloud storage services.

3. Use Smartphone apps – If you are a small business owner or individual that is away from your office a great deal, Smartphone apps are one of the best ways to track your expense receipts and make digital copies of important documents. With these apps your can save digital copies of your receipts and convert them to PDF’s for later use. Check your app store for these apps.

These are just a few ways to digitize your important documents. Be sure to do a needs assessment before digitizing your documents and taking them into the clouds to ensure that your current and future needs will be meet with the technology that you choose.

The Tech Accountant

Saturday, February 05, 2011

Give a credit, Take some credit

Can you remember back to a time when many were excited to utilize the first time home-buyer credit to save money on their taxes?

Well the party is over for many since the 2 year grace period for repayment of qualified home purchases has ended. Many taxpayers are now wondering how they will pay for the credit that is now being taken back.

The short answer is it depends on when the house was purchased and if the taxpayer is still living in the home or not. The IRS will be sending three different notices to taxpayers depending on what your home status is:

• CPO3a – will be sent to taxpayers who purchased a qualified home in 2008 and who begin repaying the credit with your 2010 tax return.

• CPO3b – will be sent to taxpayers who purchased homes in 2009 and early 2010 reminding them of the repayment rule and the ramifications if they sell the home or change the use.

• CPO3c – will be sent to taxpayers whose principal residence is not currently the residence that they claimed the credit for.

Be sure to keep a close eye out for the IRS notices in your mailbox.

The Tech Accountant

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

You Can't File Your Tax Return Yet

After notifying taxpayers recently that many tax forms would not be ready for filing until February 14th, the IRS added some more forms to the list and these have an indefinite date for filing. Here are 6 tax forms that the IRS said will be delayed until a later date for filing.


Hopefully the IRS will give a specific date when these forms can be file in the near future.

The Tech Accountant

Sunday, January 30, 2011

2010/2011 Tax Outlook -What happen and what to do in the future

The lame duck session of Congress is behind us and the new Congress is in session. So what happen at the end of 2010 and what can taxpayers expect going forward?

Here's is a brief overview of what the lame duck session did and how you can plan for your future taxes now.


The Tech Accountant

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Form 1099's are EZ with Peachtree

It's that time of year again. The wonderful tax filing time for small biz's and this year is the start of some of the many changes that will affect processing of Form 1099's for payments to vendors. One way for a small biz owner to make the process a bit less stressful is to use small biz accounting software in their business. Here is a quick video on how easy it is to file and complete your Form 1099's using accounting software.

The Tech Accountant

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Is snow clouding your biz? Here are 3 ways to bring back the sunshine

Snow storms that bring icy roads are a sure fire way to stop many businesses from operating, but for some businesses a snow storm should not be a problem. As many of you already know there has been quite a few snow storms moving across the nation (Florida was the only state not to have snow this week) lately and the one that hit the southeast has brought many cites to a halt. Technology can help many small businesses continue operations even in the event of inclement weather. Here are three technologies that can keep your small business operating when Mother Nature throws snow balls at your operations:

1. Web Conferencing – You have your presentation all ready for the big meeting tomorrow but when you wake up ready for work you find out the city is shut down due to a blizzard. No worries. By using a web conferencing service your meeting can continue as planned. Web conferencing allows users to conduct live meetings, presentations, and training via the internet. So if you are stuck at home find a nice quite place (away from the kids) and conduct your meeting just like you were face-to-face

2. Web Portals – You have the contracts all typed up and are ready to deliver them to the client but there is one problem, the roads are icy and you can’t make it to the client’s location. Not a problem if you are using a web portal. Web portals allow you to share documents with virtually anyone anywhere as long as they have access to the internet. The client can login to the secure portal (just like online banking) and access the document, review and send back to you. The contract is in the client’s hands possibly faster than you delivering it.

3. Remote Desktop Sharing – You have been snowed in your home for the past few days and have not been able to make it to your client’s location. The client is having a problem with their software and they need you there to resolve the issue. With a remote desktop sharing, you can access your client’s computer and walk them through the solution to their problem or even resolve the problem yourself. The client is happy that they can continue business as usual and you look like a hero without even leaving your home.

These are just a few ways a small business owner can use technology to continue their business operations when dealing with mother-nature. We currently use all of these technologies are more in our firm even when there is not a snow storm. Be sure to research these solutions for your small business so that you can apply them in the future.

The Tech Accountant

Monday, January 10, 2011

Late Gift from the IRS

The IRS is still in a holiday season mode and kicked off this tax season with a gift to taxpayers. No it's not a pass from doing your taxes this year, but it may prove beneficial to many.

Listen to the details below:


The Tech Accountant

Thursday, January 06, 2011

Tax Relief and Your Small Biz

For most small business owners, the year 2010 was a continuation of hard economic times felt during the past two years. The economic indicators now state that there are signs that the economy is starting to recover, however many small business owners are still waiting to feel the effects of the recovery. In an effort to assist the small business owners, Congress passed and the President signed into law the Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization and Job Creation Act of 2010 on December 17. The multi-billion dollar tax package includes a great deal of modifications to current tax law affecting small business owners and extends many tax provisions that expired at the end of 2009.

Small Businesses Modifications

The 2010 Tax Relief Act provides businesses with better incentives for investing in property that will help them run their businesses more efficiently. The Act increases the bonus depreciation limit from 50-percent to 100-percent for property purchased during periods September 8, 2010 thru December 31, 2011. The Act also extends 50-percent bonus depreciation on property purchased from December 31, 2011 thru December 31, 2012. Small business owners that have certain long lived property or transportation property may be eligible for 100-percent expensing for property placed in service before January 1, 2013.

The depreciation incentives for small business owners do not stop there, in addition to bonus depreciation; Code Sec. 179 Expensing (named after the IRS Code) has been modified. The investment limits were increased under previous legislation and the 2010 Tax Relief Act grants a $125,000 limit and a $500,000 limit on investment for tax years beginning in 2012. Depreciation allows small business owners to expense property purchased against their taxable income. The modifications to the tax law allow small business owners to recover the cost of property used in the businesses fast than traditional depreciation methods.

Small Business Extensions

There were quite a few extensions of previous tax law that were set to expire or expired in 2009. Among those extensions includes:

• 100 percent exclusion of gain from qualified small business stock

• Transit benefits parity

• Work Opportunity Tax Credit (with modifications)

• New Markets Tax Credit (with modifications)

• Differential wage credit

• Brownfields remediation

• Active financing exception/look-through treatment for CFCs

• Tax incentives for empowerment zones

• Special rules for charitable deductions by corporations and other businesses

Keep in mind that many of the 2010 Tax Relief Act’s provisions are temporary. It is important to plan early to maximize your tax savings. Be sure to speak with your tax professional to get all the details regarding the tax law changes.

The Tech Accountant

Monday, January 03, 2011

New Year New Delays

Happy New Year! Since today marks the first official back to work day (although technology can help you work anytime) one would think that individuals would come back bright-eyed and bushy-tailed ready to get things done. Well if filing your taxes quickly was on your list of things to may want to push that back a little bit thanks to the recent tax laws passed and the IRS.

If you fall into any of the following categories, filing your tax return may be delayed. Listen for details below.


The Tech Accountant