Tag Archive for Ronald Cappuccio

The Smart Choice! Durable Power of Attorney

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Today I received a frantic telephone call from the adult daughter of a senior citizen client for whom I prepared an estate plan 10 years ago. Unfortunately, the man, who is a widower, had a serious stroke. He is alive but is not communicative. The daughter called and asked if I had prepared a Durable Power Of Attorney. Even though I had prepared a Will and a Living Will, the client had insisted that he did not want a Power Of Attorney.

Specifically, this client is a very private person and wanted to be in complete control of all of his assets. I had suggested that we establish a Trust, with him being the Trustee and having one of his children as a Co-Trustee who could take over if he came incapacitated. That was rejected. Read more

Wake Up And Smell The Coffee! More Taxes – Time After Time

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Wake up and smell the coffee! Its political season again and unfortunately it appears most candidates for State Governors and Congress are advocating a “tax the other guy” approach.

• “We need more money for the schools!”-Tax the Rich.
• “We need more money for the poor!” – Tax the oil companies.
• “We need more money for the seniors!”-Increase sales tax.
• “We need to fight Ebola!”-Tax the pharmaceutical companies.

We need money for good causes so therefore we need to increase taxes? Does that really makes sense? When a politician advocates increasing taxes they always try to Read more

TaxConnections Worldwide Tax Blogs Awards 2014 – Top Twenty Tax Bloggers


Brian Mahany is the top of the list as the most prolific blogger on Worldwide Tax Blogs. Brian blogs on FATCA – The Single Worst Tax Law On the Books, Beanie Baby Founder Headed To Prison, How To Respond When Your Foreign Bank Asks About Your IRS Compliance, Restaurant Owners Beware-IRS Audits Can Lead To Immigration Charges. Brian is an expert on FATCA (Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act) and you can discover for yourselves how informative his blogs are for US citizens with offshore bank accounts. A new world is emerging for citizens with offshore bank accounts this year so stay tuned as Brian continues to share his knowledge with us. Having said that, a group of distinguished tax bloggers leads TaxConnections Worldwide Tax Blogs Top Twenty Tax Bloggers list this year and they all provide a different perspective on a wide variety of tax matters. Read more

Columbus Day – Taxes, The Government Shutdown And ObamaCare

TaxConnections Picture - Columbus ShipToday is Columbus Day. Growing up it was an important holiday but now Columbus is being derided for all of his various faults. My son, who is in the 8th grade and has an extremely inspiring history teacher, came home and told me that “Mrs. M does not think we should celebrate Columbus Day.” He went on to tell me that Leif Erickson actually discovered America and that Columbus spread disease and tortured Native Americans.

What he didn’t say was that Columbus also demanded tribute from the Indians, stole their gold, enslaved some of the Indians and brought them back to Spain as objects of curiosity. He also didn’t discuss the brutality and all of the other negative things that can be brought up about Columbus. Thank heavens!

Those who pooh-pooh Columbus bring up the fact that most educated Europeans in the late 15th century knew that the world was a sphere and not flat. But the fact was, like the great inventors and explorers of humanity, Columbus took theoretical knowledge and applied it. Yes, there were some professors in the universities of the time talking about astronomy and geography, and postulating a variety of theories. Columbus took that theory and said that he was going to discover a shorter route from Europe to India to get at the spices, gold and other valuable items less expensively and safer than going around the Cape of Africa. While the intelligentsia was simply talking, Columbus was doing.

Leif Erickson, obviously a great Viking explorer, went from Northern Europe to North America more than 400 years before Columbus. He simply went home and did nothing about it. On the other hand Columbus, not only the adventurer and Read more

IRS Temporarily Not Issuing Tax Liens And Levies During Shutdown

TaxConnections Blogger Virginia La Torre Jeker reminds to file extensionThe IRS has finally announced that it will stop the automatic issuing of federal tax liens, levies and executions during the government shut down. Unfortunately, many automatic levies have been issued by the IRS and there is no one in the IRS to talk to or negotiate with to set up installment agreements or take other actions to remove the levy. This results in great hardship for taxpayers.

The IRS has been issuing notices, some dated October 7, 2013, even though the office was to be shut down by October 1, 2013. It is hard for me to believe that this was not designed to have maximum impact upon taxpayers. In fact all the IRS services that normally assist taxpayers, whether its at a service center, or on the telephone, as well as the normal collection and auditing function, have been terminated during the shutdown. This intentional design clearly is to put a maximum negative impact upon taxpayers.

Because of the complaints, the IRS is now issued a revised listing of its operations during the government shut down where it indicates that it is stopping to send future tax liens and levies until that section of the IRS reopens. Unfortunately Read more

US Government Crushes Beanie Babies Founder

TaxConnections Picture - Uncle Sam ShakedownThe IRS is at it again going after famous people to make big publicity splashes about their criminal prosecutions. This time, it involves 69-year-old H. Ty Warner, the inventor of Beanie Babies the craze of the 90s, for having Swiss bank accounts. The Department of Justice and IRS love to attack popular and well-known people in order to demonstrate that the government uses force against people who are “tax evaders”.

I am not arguing that Mr. Warner did not violate US tax law, but the Government once again is using the prosecution of a famous person such as Mr. Warner (previously Lauryn Hill, Wesley Snipes, Leona Helmsley, etc) to show that it will use the full force of the government to collect taxes.

The really sad part of this is that if Mr. Warner were a citizen of almost any other country, earning income in a foreign country would not be considered taxable. The US is one of only 2 countries that taxes of foreign earnings of its citizens. None of the news articles and commentary mentioned this very important fact. I am sure there are celebrations at the Department of Justice and the IRS about the great publicity and “deterrent effect” that they are getting with this prosecution. But no one is thinking about the real ultimate deterrent, that of encouraging businesses and successful business owners to stay away from the US, give up their citizenship, or form entities in any other country for tax and business reasons.

This is very sad!

In accordance with Circular 230 Disclosure

Biggest IRS Things To Remember During Government Shut Down

TaxConnections Blogger Ronald Cappucio posts about Government Shut DownThe IRS is scaling back operations during the Government Shutdown

These are the things to remember:

1. FILE all tax returns on time.

2. PAY all tax deposits and balances on time. For example, the October 15 extension date for filing Individual returns still applies.

3. The IRS computers will be generating notices, levies, and other tax actions and the websites should be working.

4. AUDITS will be delayed until after the shutdown.

5. Some COLLECTION activities will be delayed.

6. All TIME DEADLINES remain in effect. If you have a letter stating you must respond in 30 days, 90 days, etc, and you do not, you will lose your appeal rights when the IRS does reopen.

Here is an excerpt for RIA Checkpoint:

Government shutdown forces IRS to scale back operations Read more

Deadline for Reversing 2012 Roth Conversions Is Closing

TaxConnections Picture - VaultIf you converted a traditional IRA into a Roth account last year and are now unhappy with the results, you can reverse the conversion as long as you get it done by October 15th. Here’s what you need to know as this deadline rapidly approaches!

Reversal Basics

When you converted your traditional IRA into a Roth IRA last year, the transaction was treated as a distribution from the traditional IRA followed by a contribution of the distributed amount to the Roth account. So the conversion triggered a 2012 federal income tax bill (and maybe a state income tax bill, too) based on the traditional IRA’s value on the conversion date.

However, 1 taxpayer-friendly aspect of the Roth conversion drill is that individuals who use the calendar year for tax purposes have until October 15th of the year following the conversion year to reverse a conversion. For example, you have until October 15th of this year to reverse a 2012 conversion. That October 15, 2013 deadline applies whether or not you extended your 2012 Form 1040. Read more

Father’s Day – What Happens When Dad Needs To Stop Working?

Lawyers call it “succession planning.” This simply means what do you need to do to organize your business to transfer to the next generation, retire, or simply sell the business. Even though more businesses are becoming woman-owned, most of my business owner clients are men.

What happens if the business owner gets sick? Is there a plan in place to take over the business? Who will run the business?

Suppose the owner suddenly dies? The same issues apply.

What if the owner wants to retire? Many times the most significant asset is the business and without selling it, a satisfactory retirement is not possible. What are the taxes to be paid and how can we plan to minimize the take of the various State and Federal governments?

I know thinking about death, disability and illness, old-age, and retirement can be difficult. Nevertheless, it is so much better to start planning when everything is okay rather than in the midst of a crisis.