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NOTICE TO RESIDENTS OF MARYLAND

We are NOT affiliated with the State of Maryland. If you are looking for information about Maryland income taxes, please go to www.marylandtaxes.com.


Useful Links:

FindAGoodCPA.com - Not a healthcare professional?  Find a CPA or EA who understands the tax issues specific to you.

Nanny Taxes - Find out what's involved with complying with the Nanny Tax Rules

IRS Web Site - for tax forms, publications, and general tax information.

Exchange Authority - New England's first authority for IRC 1031 Exchanges

Cost Segregation Studies - Accelerate tax depreciation deductions on new and existing buildings through cost segregation studies

Social Security - find out the latest rules or your projected retirement benefit.

The Company Corporation offers fast, reliable & affordable incorporation and LLC services.


MONTHLY TAX NEWSLETTER

June 2016

NEW OVERTIME RULES TAKE EFFECT DECEMBER 1ST

by Greta Malstrom, Payroll & HR Manager for Schwartz & Schwartz PC

As you may have heard, the Department of Labor has a new overtime rule that takes effect Dec 1, 2016.  To summarize, if an employee is being classified as an exempt employee (and not currently being paid for any overtime), then their salary must be at least $913 per week, which equates to $47,476 for a full-year worker. Anyone on salary for less than $47,476 must be paid time and a half for hours worked in excess of 40 hours per week.
 
Employers that have staff who are affected by these rules as of Dec. 1, 2016 have the following three options:
  • Increase the worker’s annual salary to at least $47,476,
  • Switch the affected employees to an hourly rate and pay them overtime after 40 hours per week,
  • Or, limit the work hours to no more than 40 per week.
The US Department of Labor projects that this change will increase the wages for more than 4.2 million US workers (including 84,000 MA workers) by either a salary raise or overtime when they work more than 40 hours.
 
Here are a few links from the DOL pertaining to these new rules:

If you have any questions about these new overtime rules or about payroll issues in general, please contact the Schwartz & Schwartz Payroll Team at 781-503-0400 or by email at: payroll@schwartzaccountants.com.

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HOW TO GENERATE TAX-FREE INCOME FROM YOUR HOME EACH YEAR

by Andrew D. Schwartz, CPA

Are you aware that if you rent your home for 14 days or less in a calendar year, 100% of the rent received is tax-free to you?

Let's say you can rent out your home for $5k per week, and you rent the home out for only 2 weeks each year. In this example, you would put $10k of rental income into your pocket each year without owing a dime in federal income taxes.  Now that's great tax planning!

We've recorded an informative 3-minute presentation on how to generate tax-free income from your home each year available at: https://youtu.be/mErYBKqXYUg. Please view it, like it, and share it.

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REAL ESTATE: THE SECOND-HIGHEST EXPENSE IN YOUR PRACTICE

by Dave Miller  of Carr Healthcare Realty

When it comes to managing expenses in your practice, there are dozens of categories to evaluate: equipment, technology, loan costs and interest rates, sundries, marketing, and on and on they go.

Many practice owners are quick to "shop-out" what they believe are the most obvious expenses, but few understand the impact of one of the largest expenses and how it can be dramatically reduced to increase profitability. The highest expense for most practices is payroll, followed by real estate. Real estate encompasses your monthly rent or mortgage payments, along with the property’s operating expenses, maintenance fees, utilities, and janitorial costs.

If you consider these top two expenses, payroll and real estate, only one of them is really negotiable. With payroll, you can either pay people their value or they usually find another job that will. You may decide that you can cut staff, but if you need people you need to pay them what they deserve or they will eventually leave.

Real estate, however, is 100% negotiable. You have the choice of leasing or owning, as well as being in an office building, retail center, a stand-alone building, or large medical complex with many other providers. You can choose the size of your space, the design, and the landlord you want to work with—or to be your own landlord. And if you do own, you get to decide whether to buy an existing building, an office condo, or to develop your own building from the ground-up.

When negotiating the economic terms of a lease, you get to have a say in the length of lease, the desired concessions including build out period, tenant improvement allowance, free rent, lease rates, annual rate increases and many other provisions.

With these many choices to evaluate and understanding that each one affects the final economic outcome, why is it that so many practices fail to capitalize on their real estate opportunities? The short answer is that most practice owners and administrators simply don’t have the knowledge and expertise in commercial real estate to understand how to make the most of these opportunities. They view real estate as a necessary evil instead of an incredible opportunity to improve profitability, reduce expenses and improve the quality of their patients’ experience. When the correct approach is taken, you may actually look forward to it instead of dreading your real estate negotiation.

Let’s take a look at three key ideas that will help you make the most of your next real estate transaction.

1. Timing

Every type of transaction has an ideal timeframe to start the process. When starting too early or too late, you communicate to the landlord or seller that you don’t really know what you’re doing. When that message is communicated, it hurts your ability to receive the best possible terms. For example, don’t wait for your landlord to approach you on a lease renewal negotiation. Start by consulting with a professional so you can understand the ideal timeframe to start your transaction, come up with a specific game plan for what you want to achieve, and then you be the one to approach your landlord with renewal terms.

2. Representation

Landlords and sellers prey on unrepresented tenants who don’t really know the market or what their options are. If the tenant were a Fortune 500 company, the landlord would approach them with a high level of respect, expecting that they either have a real estate broker hired to represent them or have a team of professionals internally that are well equipped to handle the transaction.

In contrast, when a landlord or seller starts speaking with a tenant who isn’t represented, and who they don’t believe knows the market as well as they do, that tenant is not going to get the same level of respect through the process. This is because the landlord senses an opportunity to take advantage of a small tenant who is not an expert, doesn’t have a full complement of real estate knowledge and skills, and who doesn’t have adequate representation.

When you understand that commissions are paid in commercial real estate just like they are in residential real estate—they are set aside in advance for two parties, not just one—then you understand there aren’t any savings by not having a broker. And if there aren’t any savings by not having a broker, then showing up without one only further detracts from your credibility.

3. Leverage and Posture

It is nearly impossible to emerge victorious from a negotiation without leverage and posture which are created by having multiple options in the market. If you limit yourself to one property, you are at the mercy of that owner. Since most landlords and sellers negotiate professionally, it is easy for them to know when you don’t have other viable options.

Simply telling a landlord that you have a proposal from another landlord won’t give you a strong enough posture. Most landlords look at unrepresented tenants and assume they do not know the market, do not understand all their options, and are not really serious about making the landlord compete for their business. Leverage and posture are created when you have the right timing, professional representation, an understanding of all your available options, and a detailed game plan of what you want to accomplish in order to capitalize on the market.

These three key ideas are the first of many factors that allow healthcare tenants and buyers to reduce their second highest expense which dramatically impacts profitability and cash flow.

Carr Healthcare Realty is the nation’s leading provider of commercial real estate services for healthcare tenants and buyers. Every year, hundreds of medical, dental, veterinary, and other healthcare practices trust Carr Healthcare Realty to help them achieve the most favorable terms on their lease and purchase negotiations. By not representing landlords or sellers, Carr Healthcare Realty is able to strongly advocate for healthcare providers and avoid conflicts of interest while saving their clients hundreds of thousands of dollars. Carr Healthcare Realty’s team of experts can assist with all types of real estate transactions, including lease renewals, expansions, relocations, startup offices, purchases, and practice transitions.

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TAX AND FINANCIAL PLANNING CALENDAR FOR JUNE 2016

Month

Income Taxes

Saving and Investing

 

June

  • 2nd quarter estimates due 6/15/16
  • Income tax returns (or extension requests) for Ex-Patriots due 6/15/16

 

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2015 & 2016 TAX FACTS

  • For 2015, the standard deduction for a single individual is $6,300 and for a married couple is $12,600. A person will benefit by itemizing once allowable deductions exceed the applicable standard deduction. Itemized deductions include state and local income taxes (or sales taxes), real estate taxes, mortgage interest, charitable contributions, and unreimbursed employee business expenses.
  • For 2015, the personal exemption is $4,000. Individuals will claim a personal deduction for themselves, their spouse, and their dependents. 
  • The maximum earnings subject to social security taxes is $118,500 for 2015 and 2016, up from $117,000 in 2014.
  • The standard mileage rate is $.54 per business mile as of January 1, 2016, down from $.575 for 2015.
  • The maximum annual salary deferral into a 401(k) plan or a 403(b) plan is $18,000 in 2015 and 2016, up from $17.5k in 2014.  And if you'll be 50 or older by December 31st, you can contribute an extra $6,000 into your 401(k) or 403(b) account this year.
  • The maximum annual contribution to your IRA is $5,500 for 2015 and 2016.  And if you turn 50 by December 31st, you can contribute an extra $1,000 that year.  You have until April 15, 2017 to make your 2016 IRA contributions.

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This Month's Topics

New Overtime Rules Take Effect December 1st

How To Generate Tax-Free Income From Your Home Each Year

Real Estate: The Second-Highest Expense in Your Practice

The FICA Refund for Medical Residents 

2015 & 2016 Tax Facts

Tax and Financial Planning Calendar for June 2016

 

NEWSLETTER ARCHIVES
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WHAT'S NEW WITH THE FICA REFUND?

In a shocking development, the IRS recently announced that they will be honoring the FICA tax refunds submitted by residency programs and individual doctors.  The catch is that only FICA taxes paid prior to 4/1/05 qualify.

For more information, go to our April 2010 Newsletter, our January 2009 Newsletter, or our February 2001 Newsletter or read through the IRS' Chief Counsel Advice Memorandum on this issue.

Let's work together to keep current on this hugely valuable tax break.  Please post whatever you read or hear regarding this FICA issue on our new Message Board we set up just for this topic.

 

 
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