AHP Articles

Created: Monday, March 26, 2018

Making 2017 retirement plan contributions in 2018

The clock is ticking down to the tax filing deadline. The good news is that you still may be able to save on your impending 2017 tax bill by making contributions to certain retirement plans. For example, if you qualify, you can make a deductible contribution to a traditional IRA right up until the April 17, 2018, filing date and still benefit from the resulting tax savings on your 2017 return. You also have until April 17 to make a contribution to a Roth IRA. And if you happen to be a small business owner, you can set up and contribute to a Simplified Employee Pension (SEP) plan up until the due date for your company’s tax return, including extensions.
Created: Monday, March 12, 2018

IRS Announces Reduction in 2018 Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) Limit

Last week, the IRS announced in Bulletin No 2018-10, a reduction in the family contribution limit for Health Savings Accounts (HSAs). In 2017, the IRS announced a $3,450 limit for individuals and $6,900 limit for families. While the limit for individuals remains the same, the limit for families has been reduced by $50 to $6,850. The decrease from the previously announce amount is due to the change in the cost of living index in the new tax bill which caused the limit to rise a little slower than previously anticipated.
Created: Saturday, March 3, 2018

FAQs about Deducting Home Loan Interest under the New Tax Law

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) changes the rules for deducting interest on home loans. Most homeowners will be unaffected because favorable grandfather provisions will keep the prior-law rules for home acquisition debt in place for them.
Created: Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 Extends a Number of Expired Tax Provisions for 2017

On Friday, February 9, 2018, the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 was signed into law. The new law includes an extension of certain expired tax provisions for 2017, and tax relief for victims of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria and the California Wildfires. Below is a summary of the key provisions affecting individual taxpayers.
Created: Thursday, January 25, 2018

Tax Reform Law: Topics of Special Interest for Individuals

As you've heard by now, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) includes a number of changes that will affect individual taxpayers in 2018 and beyond. Significant attention has been given to the reduced tax rates for most individuals and the new limit on deducting state and local taxes. But there is more to the story. We provide a summary of some of the lesser-known provisions in the new law.
Created: Friday, December 22, 2017

What the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act Means for You

This week the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (the Act) has officially passed. The Act significantly changes the landscape for individuals and business for tax years beginning after December 31, 2017. For many taxpayers, the changes made by the legislation present a host of tax planning challenges and opportunities going forward. We have included an overview of these challenges and opportunities for both individuals and businesses below. Please contact your AHP tax consultant with any questions or concerns you may have.
Created: Friday, November 17, 2017

Retirement Account Catch-Up Contributions Can Add Up

Are you age 50 or older? If so, you can currently make extra ""catch-up"" contributions to certain types of tax-favored retirement accounts. Over time, these contributions can make a significant difference in your retirement-age wealth. What about tax reform? After President Trump and other lawmakers stated that they wouldn’t tinker with retirement plan contribution tax breaks, the U.S. Senate has proposed limits to catch-up contributions. These are just proposals. For now, the rules in this article are current law. Unfortunately, many people are unaware of this retirement savings bonus. Here’s what you need to know to reap the benefits.
Created: Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Give Back and Save Taxes with Charitable Contributions

As year end approaches, you may be thinking about making some charitable donations. Here's a rundown of the potential tax breaks for your generosity. Itemized Deductions You can claim write-offs for contributions of cash and other items donated to charitable organizations, such as United Way and Goodwill. What you might not realize is that not all contributions to charities qualify for tax breaks. First, you receive tax savings from charitable donations only if you itemize deductions on your personal tax return. For 2017, the standard deduction amounts are:
Created: Friday, September 8, 2017

IRS Warns to Beware of Charity Scams Related to Hurricane Recovery

The IRS is warning about possible fake charity scams that are emerging due to recent hurricanes. Taxpayers who want to help should seek out recognized charitable groups to make donations. “While there has been an enormous wave of support across the country for the victims of Hurricane Harvey, people should be aware of criminals who look to take advantage of this generosity by impersonating charities to get money or private information from well-meaning taxpayers,” the IRS stated. Such fraudulent schemes may involve in-person solicitations or contact by telephone, social media and e-mail. Criminals often send “phishing” e-mail messages that steer recipients to bogus websites that appear to be affiliated with legitimate charitable causes. These sites frequently try to imitate the websites of — or use names similar to — genuine charities. They sometimes claim to be affiliated with legitimate charities in order to persuade people to send money or provide personal financial information that can be used to steal identities or financial resources.
Created: Sunday, August 13, 2017

Casualty and Theft Losses: Find the Silver Lining in Dark Clouds

Although nowhere in the United States is safe from Mother Nature, there is a silver tax lining: If your personal-use property is struck by a natural disaster, damaged by another calamity or stolen, you may be able to obtain some relief by claiming a casualty or theft loss as an itemized deduction on your individual tax return. As with most tax breaks, however, there are important rules and limits you need to be aware of. The Basics To qualify for a casualty loss deduction, the damage or destruction must result from a “sudden, unexpected or unusual” event. Typically, this includes damage or destruction caused by natural disasters, such as hurricanes, tornadoes, fires, earthquakes or volcanic eruptions. But casualty losses may also result from such events as automobile collisions or water pipes bursting during a severe cold snap.