4 Debt Management Magic Tricks for Financial Success

Debt is a reality for many Americans. Consider the following statistics from consumer information provider ValuePenguin: The average amount of credit card debt in America is $5,700. More than one-third of all American households have credit card debt. The total outstanding U.S. consumer debt is $3.4 trillion. Many individuals find themselves underestimating or ignoring their [...]


Sail Smoothly Through Those Saving or Shredding Decisions

With that sigh of relief that the April 18 deadline to file your tax return—or request an extension—may also come the desire to purge some prior year documents such as receipts, canceled checks, and bank and brokerage statements. Follow these general retention tips for individuals and businesses as you head toward the blue skies of [...]

May 5th, 2017|BUSINESS TAX, INDIVIDUAL TAX, May 2017|

Knocking Down the “Pins” of Self-Employment Tax Challenges

Today’s technology strives to make self-employment easier than ever. However, those who work for themselves can face some distinctive self-employment tax challenges. Such individuals can step into the following three “lanes” to help overcome these obstacles. Lane #1: Learn Liabilities Because self-employed individuals are liable for self-employment tax, they must pay both the employee and [...]

March 27th, 2017|APRIL 2017, INDIVIDUAL TAX|

“Yours, Mine, or Ours?” Part 1: Determining Community and Separate Property in a Divorce

It is often estimated that approximately half of all U.S. marriages end in divorce. While some may consider this statistic to be common knowledge, what is less well-known is how divorcing couples should go about dividing their assets and liabilities. Thus, “Yours, Mine, or Ours?” is a three-part saga that explores the story of Bob [...]

February 22nd, 2017|INDIVIDUAL TAX, MARCH 2017|

“Yours, Mine, or Ours?” Part 3: Four Income Tax Considerations of a Divorce

In our “Yours, Mine, or Ours?” series, we have explored the issues of separate property and marital assets as they relate to Bob and Helen, who are divorcing after more than three decades of marriage. In the final installment of our saga, Helen and her CPA, Ruth, meet to review four key income tax considerations [...]

February 22nd, 2017|INDIVIDUAL TAX|

“Yours, Mine, or Ours?” Part 2: Identifying and Valuing Marital Property

The first part of our “Yours, Mine, or Ours?” series introduced Bob and Helen, a divorcing couple living in Texas. In the first meeting with her attorney, Helen discovered that the couple owns assets in several categories, each of which will be treated differently in the divorce proceedings. This second part follows Helen as she [...]

February 22nd, 2017|INDIVIDUAL TAX|

Extensions and Amendments: What Increases Your IRS Audit Risk

Contrary to popular belief, tax extensions may be more likely to make the IRS smile than frown. Watch as Matt Zasada explains why filing an extension might be less risky than rushing to meet a deadline.

January 12th, 2017|INDIVIDUAL TAX, VIDEO|

Why the Election Outcome Could Bring an Avalanche of Tax Law Changes

The election of Donald Trump as president of the United States, along with Republicans retaining control of both chambers of Congress, will likely result in an overhaul of the U.S. Tax Code. Based on Trump’s tax reform plan released earlier this year, tax law changes may include a reduction in tax rates for some individual [...]


The PATH Act: Providing A “Cornucopia” of Tax Savings

It seems like retailers just put up their back-to-school sale displays, which are already being replaced with Thanksgiving decorations. Before planning your Black Friday shopping strategies, consider a gift from Uncle Sam that will likely bear fruit for many tax years to come. The Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes (PATH) Act, which was signed into [...]

October 24th, 2016|INDIVIDUAL TAX, NOVEMBER 2016|

Why Your Tax Vote Counts This Presidential Election

The President of the United States leads our country on many fronts – international trade, immigration, and education to name a few. The President also dramatically influences the economy, especially through tax law. Those influences can have a major impact on us and on future generations. One example of the ability of a president to [...]

August 7th, 2016|INDIVIDUAL TAX, SEPTEMBER 2016|

Busting 3 Common Individual Tax Return Myths

Nobody wants to be the target of an IRS audit. Fear of an audit leads taxpayers to believe in myths about what may or may not trigger the wrath of the IRS. Unfortunately, these misconceptions could potentially steer taxpayers toward greater audit risk and a higher tax bill. Below are three widespread individual tax return [...]

July 19th, 2016|AUGUST 2016, INDIVIDUAL TAX|

Avoid the Trap Set by AMT Triggers

The Ambush - A Separate Tax Computation in the Form of AMT In addition to the normal tax calculation taxpayers make, there is a lesser known taxing system called the alternative minimum tax (AMT), which can increase your overall tax bill.  Congress wanted to make sure that certain taxpayers weren’t able to avoid tax under [...]

June 28th, 2016|INDIVIDUAL TAX|

Recent Flooding Flows Deadline Extension to Houston Residents

The Houston area has been designated a federal disaster area due to the flooding that began on April 17, 2016. Given this designation, the Treasury Department has offered tax relief to residents in specified Houston counties. The deadlines for certain federal tax payments and filings have been extended until September 1, 2016. Individual Taxpayers Payments [...]


Three Strikes That Generate the Most Individual Tax Notices from the IRS

Baseball season is in full swing in April of each year—around the same time as tax return filing deadlines. It also happens to be the season for the IRS starting its mailings of the millions of notices it issues every year. Of course, the last thing most of us want is to spend time responding [...]

February 23rd, 2016|INDIVIDUAL TAX, MARCH2016|

Getting Up-to-Speed with the Presidential Candidate Tax Plans

There are several frontrunners in the current race for the White House. Perhaps one of the most popular – and controversial – issues of every presidential election is taxes. Presidential candidates sometimes include political rhetoric and lofty promises to persuade voters with their tax proposals. These might include significantly reducing or eliminating the Tax Code, [...]


Charitable Contribution Documentation: Just Do It

With an increase in charitable giving, the IRS has increased its focus on proper acknowledgement of donations and that charitable contribution documentation; specifically, cancelled checks and credit card statements are no longer acceptable receipts for tax purposes. Watch as Debbie Alexander and George Hawkins discuss adequate charitable contribution documentation for tax purposes and [...]

February 2nd, 2016|INDIVIDUAL TAX, VIDEO|

Navigating AMT and Your Tax Liability

The alternative minimum tax (AMT) is a means that Congress adopted for ensuring that those who they believe should be paying taxes are paying taxes. It works by looking at deductions differently than Form 1040, which changes the amount of taxable income. This taxable income is then balanced by the exemption—ultimately determining whether the taxpayer must pay [...]

October 25th, 2015|INDIVIDUAL TAX|

Erase Outstanding Real Estate Debt with Cancellation of Debt Income

Is your investment, rental, residential or development property worth far less today than the outstanding debt you have on it? Depending on real estate market conditions, commercial lenders may forgive some or all of owed debt on a relinquished property. If this happens, then you may have to include the cancelled debt amount in income [...]

October 25th, 2015|INDIVIDUAL TAX|

8 IRS Changes Currently on the Radar

IRS headlines in recent months have encompassed a spectrum of issues from poor customer service to their upcoming areas of focus. The CRI team has pinged ahead for potential hazards so that we can position you accordingly. Read on for a quick update to get your bearings on the eight IRS changes that have made [...]


3 Year-End Tax Tips

Pumpkin spice season is upon us, and next thing you know we'll be frantically racing through the mall to complete our Christmas shopping lists. As you prepare for the holiday frenzy, don't forget to add "call your CPA" to your to-do list. Why? There are several planning strategies to execute year-end tax tips [...]