small business

Beware the Ides of March — If You Own a Pass-Through Entity

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Shakespeare’s words don’t apply just to Julius Caesar; they also apply to calendar-year partnerships, S corporations and limited liability companies (LLCs) treated as partnerships or S corporations for tax purposes. Why? The Ides of March, more commonly known as March 15, is the federal income tax filing deadline for these “pass-through” entities.

Not-so-ancient history

Until the 2016 tax year, the filing deadline for partnerships was the same as that for individual taxpayers: April 15 (or shortly thereafter if April 15 fell on a weekend or holiday). One of the primary reasons for moving up the partnership filing deadline was to make it easier for owners to file their personal returns by the April filing deadline. After all, partnership (and S corporation) income passes through to the owners. The earlier date allows owners to use the information contained in the pass-through entity forms to file their personal returns.

For partnerships with fiscal year ends, tax returns are now due the 15th […]

An FLP Can Save Tax in a Family Business Succession

One of the biggest concerns for family business owners is succession planning — transferring ownership and control of the company to the next generation. Often, the best time tax-wise to start transferring ownership is long before the owner is ready to give up control of the business.

A family limited partnership (FLP) can help owners enjoy the tax benefits of gradually transferring ownership yet allow them to retain control of the business.

How it works

To establish an FLP, you transfer your ownership interests to a partnership in exchange for both general and limited partnership interests. You then transfer limited partnership interests to your children.

You retain the general partnership interest, which may be as little as 1% of the assets. But as general partner, you can still run day-to-day operations and make business decisions.

Tax benefits

As you transfer the FLP […]

Increase in the Small Business Tax Credit

Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), some small businesses may qualify for a small business tax credit. To be eligible, you must cover at least 50 percent of the cost of single (not family) health care coverage for each of your employees. You must also have 24 or fewer full-time equivalent employees and those employees must have average wages of less than $50,000 per year. In 2014, the tax credit goes up to 50 percent and will be available to qualified small businesses that purchase coverage through the new health insurance marketplaces in each state, called the Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP).

The SHOP marketplace will be open in October of 2013 for coverage that takes effect on January 1, 2014, or later.

For more info, click here. 

Written by Mike Musson, CPA, Partner LinkedIn Profile

Part 3 of 3: Fiscal Cliff and Tax Planning for Small Businesses

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