The Slott Report | Ed Slott and Company, LLC

The Slott Report

Gift Tax Exemptions Going Down? Plan Properly Before 2013

Today is the last day of February, so there's a good chance that unless you've already done so, you're about ready to go into full tax return mode – gathering your documents, pulling together your receipts and making a list of all those charitable contributions you're going to tell your CPA you made. And while getting your tax return filed on time is important, it's also important to keep one eye on the future, planning ahead so that future tax returns are less painful than they otherwise might be.

2012 Tax Code Changes

Numerous tax changes are in store for individuals in 2012. It's very difficult, however, to write with any degree of certainty about those affecting your income taxes because Congress has shown a tendency to make retroactive changes at any point in time. A number of income tax provisions that affected individual tax payers expired at the end of 2011. See some examples below.

Income Tax Due on 2010 Roth Conversion

You will have income tax due if you went through with a 2010 Roth conversion, so make sure your tax return includes deferred income. Did you do a Roth conversion in 2010 and take the default option of deferring the income to 2011 and 2012?

Converting Inherited IRAs, IRA Rollovers Highlight Mailbag

IRAs can be tricky, especially when you are a beneficiary trying to convert the funds to tax-free territory. We answer a question on that subject, as well as questions on IRA rollover rules and Roth IRA distributions in this week's Slott Report Mailbag.

IRS Releases Tax Scams for 2012

IRS released its "Dirty Dozen Tax Scams for 2012" on February 16, 2012. Number one on the list this year - Identity Theft. We detail this problem and how you can protect yourself below.

MarketWatch Video: IRAs and Taxes...Time for a Roth?

In another installment of MarketWatch's video series, Andrea Coombes interviews Ed Slott and Jack Nuckolls about the complexities of IRAs and taxes, while asking a question many consumers are asking their financial advisor at this very minute: Is it time for a Roth IRA? This video walks you through the process along with the Roth conversion conversation every consumer should have with their financial advisor. This video is part of a three-video series.

MarketWatch Video: Ed Slott on Reducing Your Tax Hit

In an interview with MarketWatch's Andrea Coombes, Ed Slott and Jack Nuckolls discuss strategies to reduce your tax bill before 2013. Taxes are going up (tax on investment income, 3.8% healthcare surtax, income tax rates for the highest earners are heading to 39.6%), and Ed provides several strategies you can use to avoid the uncertainty of future tax rates.

MarketWatch Video: Ed Slott on Avoiding IRA Mistakes

Ed Slott was interviewed by MarketWatch's Andrea Coombes in a multi-video discussion on IRAs, how to avoid a big tax hit and how to avoid the penalty-induced mistakes many individuals make. This first video features Ed and Jack Nuckolls in a discussion about IRA mistakes you don't want to make...unless you want to see penalties and plenty of taxes in your future.

Increased Long-Term Care Insurance Tax Deduction

Phase-outs apply to many items on your income tax return. This means that if your adjusted gross income (AGI) exceeds specified limits, your eligibility to deduct certain items will be cut back or curtailed altogether, including deductions for contributions you make to traditional IRAs. When your income increases, you could lose lots of otherwise allowable itemized deductions as well as personal exemptions.

Inherited IRAs and Bankruptcy

The area of creditor protection and inherited IRAs has been a murky one. On one hand, IRAs are intended to provide for the account owner in his or her retirement not for the retirement of their children. On the other hand, the Tax Code allows inherited IRAs to remain tax deferred (when certain conditions are met) until distributions are taken from the account.
 

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