When it comes to Tax Planning, being proactive pays. Being vigilant and precise with your tax reporting and expenses can minimize your tax liabilities- and save you money at year’s end.  Tax prep and documentation should not be something that only occurs at tax-time; proactive tax planning is something that happens year-round to avoid nasty penalties and maximize deductions.

Some tax planning tips include:

Provide Proof

Prepare to be vigilant about keeping track of business expenses- which can be a bear! A good rule of thumb is that if you plan to deduct an expense, you will need some sort of proof of the purchase, like a receipt, invoice, or canceled check. You can also use bank records, if needed, to document purchases related to business that you do not have an actual receipt for when it comes time to complete or file your taxes and reports.

Document Diligently

Always save invoices or receipts for all your business-related purchases. It helps to write and attach a note explaining the purchase for documenting later, when you may have forgotten the specifics surrounding the expense.

Segregate Accounts

Make sure to keep personal accounts separate from business accounts whenever possible. It can make accurate record-keeping nearly impossible and you could suffer by missing out on certain business deductions this way.

Classify Carefully

Don’t misclassify your workers as the income-tax withholding and employment taxes are quite different. While you do withhold federal income tax and FICA taxes from your employees, you also are responsible for unemployment taxes and your own share of FICA. When you are dealing with staff that are actually independent contractors, you are not required to withhold taxes, making the individual responsible for their own self-employment tax liability. This also eliminates the need to pay separate FICA or unemployment taxes.  Talk to your accounting professional to learn more.

Pay Promptly

Pay the employment taxes that you collect from the wages of your employees and staff for federal income tax and FICA (Social Security and Medicare) taxes promptly. The IRS is not tolerant of delayed payment and noncompliance penalties can be severe.

Industry experts offer tax tips for small businesses, including that you need to be careful and cautious when making tax deductions. This may look suspicious and trigger an audit, further reinforcing the need for organized documentation. The IRS frequently assesses business tax deductions, like vehicle use and travel expenses, to ensure you are sticking to their guidelines and limits.

Consider Hiring Help

Take the worry out of your business taxes with some professional help from BMH Accounting. If you own or operate a company or brand, outsourcing your financials and tax reports to a certified accountant makes good business sense. Don’t risk penalties and fines by going it alone; hire a tax professional today.

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