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There is no denying the huge need existing in Arkansas and beyond for available foster homes and for families to adopt children in need of a forever home. As I write this, I am thinking of some friends who this very day celebrate "adoption day" in honor of the four they have adopted. If you have lived around Arkansas very long, you likely have heard of the incredibly important and special organization, The CALL, or ...

Recently, a friend/client who is considering applying for Social Security (SS) benefits asked an intriguing question, "Are there any decisions I might make right now that could make my family and me poorer?" Friends, that's a great question! And the answer is a resounding, yes, there are! The fact is, for most retirees, SS benefits will account for a large portion (perhaps the largest portion) of their income during retirement, once they begin drawing benefits. ...

Seems like a silly question doesn't it? How can voluntarily paying taxes on anything serve to reduce total taxes in any way? Paradoxically, in certain situations, it can! First, a bit of background. The tax code says that scholarships and grants used to pay tuition and fees can be excluded from gross income and consequently are not taxable. On the other hand, scholarships and grants not used for tuition and fees, but used to pay ...

From time to time I am asked for information and thoughts on issues related to retirement, both for those already enjoying it, as well as for us who still have it in our future. Along those lines, periodically in this space I plan to offer, as it says above, musings for current and future retirees. At times this will be informational, while occasionally sprinkled in with the humorous, and hopefully always enjoyable and helpful. What ...

We all know that identity theft and hacking is a serious problem and can lead to major financial loss.  Much has been written about that. But did you know that even your social security accounts are at risk to be hacked and benefits stolen? Sadly, that is exactly what happened in a situation that recently came to my attention. In this case, the victim received an unexpected letter from the Social Security Administration (SSA) expressing ...

Tax filing season; a time many people find stressful enough without having to worry about unsubstantiated myths and fears regarding their tax returns. Let's face it, you're busy, and the last thing you need is to worry about things that you may have heard, but just simply are not true! Here is what the IRS currently considers as the most prevalent tax-filing myths and what you should know about them. So read on, and then ...

It's tax season, and tax scams have become so common during this time of year that they almost seem like a rite of passage. This year is no different. The IRS recently has made us aware of a new scam that seems to have them more concerned than usual; so much so that they have put out multiple warnings about it. In this latest twist, the scammers use phishing and other manipulations to gain access ...

According to the U.S. Small Business Administration Office of Advocacy, 99.7% of U.S. businesses are small businesses. Sadly, only about a third of those businesses make it to the second generation, and less than a handful to the third generation, because the future of the business often takes a back seat to the demanding task of managing daily operations. With a little help and expertise, succession planning can help provide a road map for the ...

Well, in case you haven't heard, Congress has done it to us again. Done what, you ask? Pass into law tax provisions that effect last year, that's all! You may not have even been aware that the federal government shut down briefly early last Friday while, once again, Congress wrestled with a budget deal. At 12:00 am Friday morning, the US government technically ran out of funding and shut down, and remained so for several ...

Christmas time and the coming end of the year are historically times of increased giving by many.Included in that is often a last-minute surge in charitable giving, as people are in a more generous mood or maybe thinking about their coming tax bill. For those who have reached age 70 and a half (don't ask me why the 1/2 - I have no idea), donations can be made to qualified 501(c)(3) charities directly from your ...

Congress is enacting the biggest tax reform law in thirty years. These changes will make fundamental changes in the way you, your family and your business calculate your federal income tax bill, and the amount of federal tax you will pay. Here's a brief summary of some of the changes. Lower tax rates: The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act will reduce tax rates for many taxpayers, effective for the 2018 tax year with the maximum ...

Angela Frazier at age five with her Uncle Glen Campbell and Mother Barbara Campbell-Frazier Many have heard about the recent passing of our beloved Rhinestone Cowboy, Arkansas native Glen Campbell. What you may not know is the impact Glen and his family has made on bringing awareness to Alzheimer's and the painful consequences of the disease. The Campbell/Frazier family has bravely shared the reality of this difficult disease through Glen's documentary, I'll Be Me. The ...

As seen in the Arkansas Business Journal Executive Q&A Colin Gorman has been in public accounting since 2000. He has experience in several areas of taxation, accounting and financial management and specialized experience with construction accounting, small businesses, and litigation support and valuations planning. Gorman earned a bachelor’s degree in business and economics and a master’s degree in accounting from Hendrix College in Conway. He served as treasurer of the Associated Builders & Contractors of ...

In this space two weeks ago, we discussed possible tax planning ideas for individuals. Today, we present points for businesses and business owners. Remember, this is not an all-encompassing discussion, but rather should be viewed as a checklist of ideas for further exploration. Businesses should consider making expenditures that qualify for the business property expensing option. For tax years beginning in 2017, the expensing limit is $510,000 and the investment ceiling limit is $2,030,000. Expensing ...

As the end of the year approaches, it is a good time to consider planning moves that will help lower your tax bill for this year and possibly the next. In many cases, this will involve the time-honored approach of deferring income until next year and accelerating deductions into this year. This time-honored approach may turn out to be even more valuable if Congress succeeds in enacting tax reform that reduces tax rates beginning next ...