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The following is a news alert that we received from Thomson Reuters/PPC, the tax research service to which we subscribe.  It is very disturbing, and all our clients and friends of the firm should be aware of it:

Consumers and Tax Professionals Targeted in IRS E-mail Schemes:  The IRS has seen an approximate 400% surge in phishing and malware incidents so far this tax season. The emails are designed to trick taxpayers into responding to official communications that lead to websites designed to imitate official looking websites. The sites ask for social security numbers and other personal information. The sites also carry malware which infect computers and allow criminals to access files or track keystrokes to gain information. “While more attention has focused on the continuing IRS phone scams, we are deeply worried this increase in email schemes threatens more taxpayers,” Koskinen said. Tax professionals also are reporting phishing schemes to obtain their online credentials. If a taxpayer receives an unsolicited email that appears to be from either the IRS e-services portal or an organization closely linked to the IRS, report it by sending it to phishing@irs.gov. IR-2016-28.

Rules of Thumb:

  • If the “IRS” or “Treasury Department” calls you threatening legal action against you for a tax issue of which you are unaware, hang up – IT IS A HOAX!  As we have pointed out in earlier blog posts, the IRS will never initiate action against you without following strict protocol and they will certainly not call you about something without corresponding with you in writing beforehand.
  • Similarly with e-mail – if an e-mail claims to be an official communication, don’t believe it.  Actually, try not to open it to avoid malware issues.  The bottom line is, the IRS does not use e-mail for “official communication.”[1]  However, if you have a doubt about the authenticity of an e-mail, you can call the IRS at the appropriate number (found at:  https://www.irs.gov/uac/Telephone-Assistance) and speak with them about it.  And, of course, consider reporting the incident as indicated above.

The Internet is a wonderful thing, but with the good comes the bad, and the ability to defraud uninformed taxpayers is right up there with the bad.  Don’t let these geeky, tech-savvy criminals take a bite out of you.

[1] If you are already under examination and working with an agent, s/he may use e-mail to communicate with you, but you will already know who s/he is.  In any event, the communication will not be “official.”

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This week’s blogger is Raymond G. Russolillo, CPA, tax partner and leader of Withum’s Family Office service niche.

In an earlier post we described an interesting charitable technique known as thRaymond Russolilloe “conservation easement.”  In a nutshell, this technique allows you to swap some (permanent) flexibility with respect to your property for a healthy charitable deduction.  It is designed to encourage taxpayers to preserve open space for conservation or recreation purposes and to protect certain historic structures.   I encourage you to read the prior post for more details.  We think it is a great technique because, as we said then and still maintain now, it is the very essence of having your cake and eating it, too.

But, as in all things tax, you have to make sure you dot your I’s and cross your T’s.  A recently decided Tax Court case (David R. Gemplerle, et ux. v. Commissioner, TC Memo 2016-1) underscores the tax truism that form prevails over substance, especially in cases like this.

The Gemperle’s owned and lived in an historic home.  In 2007, they granted a facade easement on the property to the Landmarks Preservation Council of Illinois.  The Council guided them through the process, including the hiring of an appraiser who subsequently determined the value of the easement to be $108,000 which the taxpayers then claimed on their 2007 tax return.  On later examination, the IRS disallowed the deduction for the simple reason that the taxpayers did not attach a copy of the appraisal to the return as filed nor did they fully complete Form 8283, Noncash Charitable Contributions.  The Tax Court agreed with the IRS position, basically eliminating the deduction and, on top of it all, assessing  a 20% accuracy related penalty and a 40% valuation penalty.

In court, the IRS argued five points:  (1) the absence of a “qualified” appraisal; (2) the existence of some technical deficiencies with respect to the facade easement itself; (3) the failure of the taxpayers to include a copy of the appraisal with the return; (4) the failure of the taxpayers to attach an appraisal summary as required by regulations and; (5) the ultimate failure of the taxpayers to prove that the decrease in value was indeed $108,000.  The Tax Court stripped the issue down to its simplest and harshest essence – they threw out the taxpayer’s case because of the taxpayers’ failure to attach a copy of the appraisal to the tax return.  Because they were relying on this simple test of fact (was an appraisal attached? – No) they did not even need to consider any of the IRS’ other points.

We can argue this heavy handed decision on the part of the Court, but the moral of the story should be clear to taxpayers and practitioners alike – if the rules say to attach certain documentation to a return, do it!  Particularly in the area of valuation, form will often beat out substance.

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This week’s blogger is Raymond G. Russolillo, CPA, tax partner and leader of Withum’s Family Office service niche.

I guess physical house robberies and street muggings are too risky for criminals these days.  Over the past couple of years, an entire cottage industry of IRS scammers has sprung up whereby telephone “solicitors” call unsuspecting Raymond Russolillotaxpayers and threaten them with legal action if they do not pay their back taxes immediately.  A number of my clients have received such calls and were, to put it mildly, shaken up by the whole experience.

Here’s the deal – we all know that the IRS is a huge, unwieldy bureaucracy that is very easy to criticize and ridicule and just as easy to fear.  As an institution, it is far from perfect.  But, the one thing IRS really knows, and lives by, is PROCEDURE!  There are time constraints and notice requirements and all kinds of legal processes procedures in place to protect both the taxpayer and the taxing agency.  And the bottom line is, procedure dictates that IRS not shake down taxpayers by telephone!  If the IRS is truly “after” you, you will know because they always make first contact by mail.  The telephone may be used to communicate with you once you are in the audit process, but any settlement offer, assessment, or bill will always be delivered to you on paper, not by an angry, demanding phone call.

Scammers rely on taxpayers’ ignorance of procedure and fear of government agencies.  Don’t be so easily fooled.  Knowing the rules the IRS lives by will enable you to spot a scam and nip it in the bud.  The IRS will never:

  1. Call to demand immediate payment, nor will they call about taxes owed without first having mailed you a bill.
  2. Demand that you pay taxes without giving you the opportunity to question or appeal the amount they say you owe.
  3. Require you to use a specific payment method for your taxes, such as a prepaid debit card.
  4. Ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone.
  5. Threaten to bring in local police or other law-enforcement groups to have you arrested for not paying.

So, what if you receive a call from a scammer?  First of all, stop, take a deep breath….and do nothing.  End the call.  If you receive a voice mail message, you may want to save the recording, particularly if you plan to report the incident to the authorities.   If you have some doubt about the legitimacy of a call (under the theory that “where there is smoke there is fire” – perhaps you received a letter that you ignored or forgot about), you should immediately contact your tax advisor for assistance.  At the very least, you can contact the Internal Revenue Service yourself at (800) 829-1040 to see if there are any open tax items you may have neglected to address.  But, if you know you owe no taxes or you are unaware of any issues in dispute, you may want to consider reporting the incident to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) at (800) 366-4484 or at www.tigta.gov.  You can also file a complaint using the FTC Complaint Assistant; choose “Other” and then “Imposter Scams.”  Include the words “IRS Telephone Scam” in the notes.

Finally, regarding other forms of communication, it is safe to say that the IRS is not even in the 21st century yet.  They do not use unsolicited e-mail (which itself is so 20th century), text messages, or any kind of social media to discuss your personal tax issues.

You know the old saw about “a fool and his money are soon parted.”  Don’t let fear and ignorance make you that fool.

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Alfred LaRosaToday’s blog post about the Heckerling Institute is written by Withum’s Private Client Services Partner, Alfred La Rosa.

Today at Heckerling, we continued to hear from some of the most prestigious presenters in the estate and trust arena.

In the morning, we heard from Bernard Krooks of Littman Krooks LLP, NYC on how special needs trusts (“SNTs”) and special needs planning are becoming increasingly more complex and important. Mr. Brooks addressed how more and more clients have family members with special needs who could benefit from a properly constructed plan. “Even high-net‐worth clients are not immune from having to deal with these issues.” The session focused on the different types of special needs trusts, when they should be used, relevant tax considerations and certain drafting and administrative issues to be aware of when designing these plans.

One of the goals of special needs planning and SNTs is to allow the individual with disabilities to qualify for government benefits while also having a source of funds that can be used to pay for services, assistance and things that government programs will not pay for. By doing so, the quality of life of the individual with disabilities is improved. Special needs planning may be appropriate for someone who is already receiving government benefits or for someone who may potentially need government benefits in the future.

An alternative to a SNT is the ABLE account. ABLE accounts are modeled after IRC Section 529 plans and provide a mechanism to fund an account in the name of certain individuals with disabilities. The funds in that account accumulate income tax-free, and if certain conditions are met, the assets contained in the ABLE account will not disqualify the beneficiary from government benefits. Although ABLE accounts are not a type of SNT, it should be discussed with the client as a possible alternative. ABLE accounts are easy to setup and administer; however, they do have certain limitations.

Session two included the renowned Richard B. Covey, senior counsel with the New York City law firm of Carter, Ledyard & Milburn Turnry P. Berry of Wyatt, Tarrant & Combs LLP from Louisville, Kentucky. In celebration of the 50th Anniversary of the Heckerling Estate Planning Conference, Richard Covey was invited as a special guest speaker. He spoke at the first conference 50 years ago! He addressed certain tax law changes and how the conference has grown tremendously over  50 years. This year, there were approximately 3,200 attendees.

Before lunch, Dennis I. Belcher of McGuireWoods, LLP from Richmond, Virginia, Carol A. Harrington of McDermott Will & Emery LLP in Chicago, Illinois and Jeffrey N. Pennell from the Emory University School of Law in Atlanta, Georgia served on the Questions and Answers panel to respond to numerous questions from the audience. The following are just some of the questions, concerns and comments that were addressed during this very informative session:

  • Concerns and questions regarding the implications when a Trustee fails to issue Crummey letters to beneficiaries were addressed. Carol Harrington informed the audience that there are three cases that support the position that Crummey letters need not be issued. The only support that the IRS has is a PRL, which is not authority. Although “you should not ignore issuing Crummey notices, the Government has no authority to disallow the annual exclusion if Crummey notices are not issued.”
  • Various questions on the potential income and estate tax issues regarding the discounted valuation of promissory notes between related parties were discussed. The panelist reminded the audience to beware of cancellation of indebtedness income. However, if a debt is cancelled as a gift, bequest or inheritance there is no cancellation of indebtedness income.
  • What amount of time should be spent and what level of due diligence must an executor perform in order to be comfortable that the decedent did not make unreported lifetime taxable gifts? There is no need to be “Sherlock Holmes,” but the executor must make a reasonable effort. Consider performing those procedures that the Service would perform if the estate is being examined (reviewing the decedent’s bank/brokerage accounts for approximately 3 years prior to death, review personal property insurance records, ask for a transcript from the Service to see if gift tax returns were previously filed, etc.). If it is determined that unreported gifts were made, the executor has a fiduciary obligation to make certain that gift tax returns are properly filed and the applicable taxes paid. It is always advisable for an executor to “hold back” a reserve and not distribute all the assets until the estate is “closed”.
  • The panelist addressed their concerns and the lack of guidance as to the new consistency of basis rules that were passed as part of the Surface Transportation and Veterans Health Care Choice Improvement Act of 2015. For estate tax returns filed after July 31, 2015, executors are required to file a return reporting the value of property to each person acquiring any interest in property included in the decedent’s estate.
  • Gift splitting for gift and GST purposes where addressed. You must be able to split a gift for regular gift tax purposes in order to split for GST purposes.
  • Who is required to pay the appraisal fee of assets in a QTIP trust that is includable in the estate of the surviving spouse? The QTIP trust or the probate estate? The panelists felt that it is an obligation of the executor. A possible solution might be to have a provision in the will that governs the payment of such expenses. Although there is authority to charge the QTIP with its allocable share of estate taxes, there is no authority as to the payment of administration expenses.
  • Although you cannot get portability if an estate tax return is not filed, you may be able to get 9100 relief, but it can be expensive. Can the preparer be held responsible for that fee?
  • A discussion on what should be considered as a reasonable method to determine allocation of a bundled fee between those costs that are subject to the 2-percent floor and those costs that are not. (Consider analyzing time records, the nature of the underlying investments, etc.). Although the panelists agreed that the likelihood of a Form 1041 being examined by the Service is very low, they did feel that the issues pertaining to bundled fees may trigger examinations.
  • The panelists discussed sales to intentionally defective trusts and the importance of having the grantor initially gift/fund the IDGT with sufficient seed money to be used as a cash down payment for the sale. As a “rule of thumb”, 10% of the purchase price is often used in determining the initial gift into the trust. The panelists were uncomfortable with less than 10% and recommended using 10-20 %. It is important that the transaction be properly structured.
  • If possible, the panelists advised not having a parent be the manager of the LLC; however, some clients refuse to give up that control.

There were many other interesting topics and comments discussed during this session.

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ted-nappi-300dpiToday’s blog post about the Heckerling Institute is written by Withum’s Private Client Services Partner and Practice Co-Leader, Ted Nappi.

Some interesting topics were discussed today, starting with Joshua S. Rubenstein speaking on the top of Heads I Win, Tails You Lose: Advising the Wealthy in Times of Protracted and Unprecedented Political, Economic, Cultural and Scientific Change. This session considered how difficult it has become to do estate planning and wealth preservation for clients when the rules are constantly changing. Tax enforcement changes have led to an over whelming number of new reporting obligations including FATCA. Accesses to information, reasonable expectations of privacy, and changes in the nature of families have added considerable complexity to the client relationship. What can be done?

  1. Plan for change.
  2. Plan for controversy
  3. One size does not fit all – use customized solutions and a variety of vehicles/approaches
  4. Where possible, keep it flexible and simple.
  5. Where possible, be transparent – avoid surprise.
  6. Tax laws and compliance will become more uniform.

Paul S. Lee next spoke about using partnerships in estate planning. ATRA has sprung income tax planning and tax basis management to the forefront of estate planning. Entities taxed as partnerships are the ideal vehicle in this new model. The presentation discussed how partnerships can be used to change the basis of assets, maximize the “step-up”, defer and shift tax items (income and deductions), and transfer wealth in a world of diminishing valuation discounts.

The enactment of ATRA marked the beginning of a “permanent” change in perspective on estate planning for high-net-worth individuals. The large gap between the transfer and income tax rates, which was the mathematical reason for aggressively transferring assets during lifetime, has narrowed considerably, and in some states, there is virtually no difference in the rates. With ATRA’s very generous applicable exclusion provisions, the focus of estate planning will become less about avoiding the transfer taxes and more about avoiding income taxes. The speaker touched upon the use of a concept of “preferred interests” in a partnership which can be used to shift income between partners to maximize both income and transfer taxes. More of this concept will be covered at a later session. A very interesting concept of “basis strip to maximize step-up” and moving tax basis under Section 734 for partnership assets was discussed. This concept can generate significant income tax savings under the right circumstances.

In the afternoon, Robert A. Romanoff spoke on the topic of Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark—Navigating Trusts Through the NIIT. Trustee selection and trust design can dramatically affect the application of the Net Investment Income Tax under section 1411 to trusts. The presentation focused on the application of the NIIT to trusts and reviewed strategies to avoid or minimize imposition of an additional 3.8% tax.

It remains to be seen whether the NIIT will become a permanent feature of our income tax system or merely a surtax that was enacted and repealed within a relatively short period of time. We have encountered temporary tax measures before, such as the one-year repeal of estate tax and imposition of a carryover basis regime in 2010. The speaker indicated that even if the NIIT proves to be a short-lived tax, it would not be prudent or in clients’ best interests for practitioners to wait until after the 2016 elections to consider whether and how to incorporate NIIT planning into the design and administration of trusts.

One of the primary challenges created by the enactment of the NIIT is the tension between techniques that may reduce or eliminate exposure of NIIT and the value of long-term accumulation of wealth in trusts for estate tax minimization. This tension existed prior to 2013 but the enactment of the NIIT has only made the issue more pronounced. How clients respond to this tension will depend both upon their intent behind the creation of a trust and the techniques we create to reduce exposure to NIIT.

From a trust design standpoint, there are issues to consider and changes in drafting may be in order. First, it may be advantageous to consider whether a one-pot discretionary trust could be used to facilitate distributions to beneficiaries who would not be subject to NIIT. Changes in drafting of trusts may also be warranted in order to afford a greater measure of flexibility to a trustee to plan to reduce exposure to NIIT. The selection of a trustee or fiduciary, already a critical issue for any trust, will be an even more important consideration for trusts that are intended to own interests in closely-held businesses given that the imposition of NIIT on business income and covered gain will likely be based on the activity of the trustee. For trusts that are intended to own stock in an S corporation, a decision whether to be taxed as a defective grantor trust, as an ESBT or as a QSST may be driven (at least in some measure) by the consideration of whether one or more of the grantor, trustee or beneficiary is active in the underlying business.

Changes in the administration of existing trusts may also be warranted in view of the very low threshold at which NIIT can be imposed on trusts. Trustees may decide to distribute a greater measure of trust income or even capital gains in order to reduce or eliminate overall exposure to NIIT. That must, of course, be consistent with standards for trust distributions. Trustees must also consider how to allocate trust expenses between net investment income and non-investment income and the impact of those allocations on overall imposition of NIIT. Finally, trustees will need to take a fresh look at the investment of trust assets in light of the NIIT. In certain circumstances, the potential imposition of NIIT on trust income may drive changes in the overall investment mix of assets held by a trust. The enactment of the NIIT has created new wrinkles in the design and administration of trusts. How taxpayers and their advisors respond to the new tax and plan for the future is a work in progress.

Diana S.C. Zeydel finished up the day speaking on the topic of Effective Estate Planning for Diminished Capacity—Can You Really Avoid a Guardianship? The presentation examined the effectiveness of estate planning documents when a client begins to lose capacity. She addressed the questions, “Can all of the client’s personal and financial needs be addressed with proper planning?” and “What are the best practices to ensure that a client’s wishes are fulfilled when the client has become vulnerable?”

Typically, estate planning is undertaken when the client is well, and the possibility of incapacity may seem remote and unlikely to occur. In addition, the subject is unpleasant for the client to contemplate and may be uncomfortable for the estate planning professional to discuss except in general terms. Yet the persons appointed to act in a client’s stead when the client is unable to act personally will have significant powers, and the client will no longer able to protect himself or herself against abuse of those powers.

Planning in anticipation of a client’s diminished capacity or incapacity is challenging. A full discussion of the options and their limitations will assist the client and his or her family in making appropriate decisions. In an egregious case of abuse, or severe family disharmony, a trip to guardianship may be unavoidable. Understanding the process and the estate planner’s ability to help guide the outcome will be key to preserving to the greatest extent possible the client’s wishes.

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This week’s guest blogger is Stephen Paul, CPA, a staff accountant at WithumSmith+Brown. Passport-Shot

Ready or not, we’ll be flipping the calendar before you know it.  In between holiday shopping and sipping eggnog by the fire, take time this season to ponder your grand plans in life, and how you’re going to fund them.  Along with the customary year-end tax planning considerations (see the previous post in this blog, and www.withum.com), the coming New Year provides an opportunity to examine your financial picture holistically.  Review the prior year, solidify your goals for the future, and move confidently towards your unique definition of financial success.

Whether you work with a financial advisor or you’re a do-it-yourself guru, here’s a list of critical documents we should all have in place and review on a regular basis.

Personal balance sheet – a complete list of all your assets, liabilities, and net worth.

Financial documents inventory – don’t lose track of what’s out there.  Include:

  • Insurance policies
  • Custodial accounts for children
    • UTMAs
    • College 529 Plans and Education Savings Accounts (ESAs)
  • Estate planning documents
    • Will
    • Financial Power of Attorney (POA)
    • Medical directive
  • Family education – make sure your loved ones know who to contact in times of need.
    • Executors and trustees named in your estate planning documents
    • Attorney, accountant, financial advisor, insurance broker
    • Contact information for each and location of documents

Investment policy statement (IPS) – widely used by financial advisors, even DIY folks should invest time in writing an IPS for themselves.  You’ll be impressed with the results when you hold yourself accountable to your goals.  Include:

  • Clear and specific financial goals – don’t just say “save for retirement and down payment on a vacation home”; rather, “save $20k/year for the next 20 years for retirement and $5k/year for 8 years for a down payment on a vacation home.”
  • Outline what investments are appropriate to meet your stated goals; know your risk tolerance and what you’re comfortable investing in.
  • Define the target risk and return of your portfolio
  • Set a benchmark to compare to your portfolio performance

Investment performance analysis of the past year – how are you doing compared to your goals and your benchmark?

Goals-based cash flow projections – are you going to reach your goals?  Projections can help guide you.

Personal budget – your behavior in the present will make the most significant impact on your future goals.

While this list might seem daunting, once you invest the time and energy to compile it you’ll spend much less time in the future reviewing and updating the documents.  You’ll also be giving yourself a greater chance of reaching your goals.  And that, my friend, is the best holiday gift you could receive.

Author:  Stephen Paul, CPA

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We recently conducted tax training for our firm’s newly hired staff accountants.   At the beginning of the program, I wanted to convey to them the importance of their jobs and so I launched into a discussion of how the federal tax law exists not merely to raise and collect revenue but also to incentivize and encourage specific taxpayer behavior in an attempt to achieve certain economic, social and political goals.  It all sounds pretty good as long as you don’t focus on the incompetence in Washington these days.  Of course, it is also pretty meaningless at this time of year because right now, all taxpayers want is one thing – minimize my tax bite!  And, don’t confuse me with talk of tax equity and other wonky stuff!

All kidding aside, tax planning is really not conceptually difficult because all it involves is reducing, eliminating, or deferring tax or taxable income.  That’s it.  Sure, it may seem daunting because, well, tax law is law and the law is generally daunting.  However, each of us can follow a fairly short and straightforward “to-do” list and take advantage of most of the opportunities available to us.  One caveat – although conceptually simple, the implementation of some of these steps may be more complex than they seem, so please consult your tax and investment advisors before jumping in.

  1. It’s always best to start at the beginning.  You or your accountant should prepare a baseline projection of your 2015 and 2016 income tax liabilities.  This multiyear tax projection is the best tool for testing the effectiveness of the various tax planning strategies listed below.  Don’t make the mistake of shortchanging this process.  You do so at your own peril, as it is truly impossible to plan on the back of an envelope.
  1. Determine if you have the ability to defer or accelerate any ordinary income items such as bonuses, client fees or IRA/Keogh distributions (among others). Go back to step 1 and evaluate the impact of these potential moves.
  1. To avoid possible penalties, make sure you take all required minimum distributions (RMD’s) from your IRA’s and other retirement plans by 12/31. This may not save you any taxes, but it will certainly save you headaches and, as I mentioned, those possible penalties.
  1. Review your portfolio and prune for tax purposes. Try to match capital gains and losses to lower the tax bite as much as you can, but not too far below zero.  For federal purposes, net capital losses can be deducted up to $3,000 per year ($1,500 for married filing separate) with any balance carried over indefinitely.  However, you may be more limited for State purposes.  For example, New Jersey does not allow net capital losses to offset ordinary income, nor does it allow for carryover losses.  So NJ residents who consciously generate net capital losses are throwing away any future tax benefit.
  1. Manage your deductions, keeping in mind that prepayment of most expenses (other than charity) has significant implications for the alternative minimum tax. In other words, consider the deduction and then return to step 1 to evaluate its impact.

The most common deductions that people defer or accelerate are:

  • Charitable contributions
    1. You can’t go wrong with direct contributions of cash or appreciated long term securities, but be sure to get a receipt for any contribution of $250 or more.
    2. Don’t even think of contributing depreciated securities- better to sell them first, take the tax loss and donate the cash.
    3. Consider using a donor advised fund.  It is a really simple way to accelerate outsized contributions to the current year, particularly if you are unsure who the ultimate charitable beneficiary should be.
    4. Be careful when donating old clothing or household goods to charity.  They must be in “good or better” condition for their value to be deductible and the proof of that condition is on you.
  • State and local income taxes
  • Real property taxes
  • Some interest expense
  • Miscellaneous itemized deductions such as investment or tax advisory fees.
  1. Make sure that all retirement plans and IRA’s to which you are entitled are funded to the max.  Make an early New Year’s resolution for 2016 to fund these plans as early in the year as possible, rather than waiting until Thanksgiving.
  1. Fund the appropriate “529 plan” for yourself and/or your beneficiary(ies). 529 plans enable you to accumulate savings free from federal income tax if the eventual proceeds are used to pay for qualified post-secondary education expenses.  In some states, such as New York, contributions to certain plans may be deductible for state tax purposes.  Compare the plans at http://www.savingforcollege.com.
  1. Review your family’s gifting program.  Up to $14,000 in gift-tax-free, present value gifts ($28,000 if married and gift splitting) can be made to as many donees as you would like.  In addition, check out the “gracious grandparent” technique we outlined in a recent blog post where, under the right circumstances, you can invest upwards of $140,000 in a 529 plan free of any gift tax.
  1. Keep current on late breaking tax news at the end of the year.  Certain “extender” provisions have not yet been enacted and reinstatement of these extenders prior to year-end may produce additional tax savings opportunities.

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