IRS issues safe harber method of accounting for nonaccrual-experience method of accounting.

Rev. Proc. 2011-46 provides a book safe harbor method of accounting for taxpayers using the nonaccrual-experience (NAE) method of accounting under § 448(d)(5) of the Internal Revenue Code and § 1.448-2 of the Income Tax Regulations. This revenue procedure also provides the procedures by which a taxpayer may obtain automatic consent (1) to change to the NAE book safe harbor method, and (2) to make certain changes within the NAE book safe harbor method.

Eligible taxpayers may calculate their uncollectible amount by multiplying the portion of the year-end allowance for doubtful accounts on the taxpayer’s applicable financial statement (AFS) attributable to current year NAE-eligible accounts receivable by 95%. The revenue procedure also provides the mechanisms by which a taxpayer may obtain automatic consent to change to, or make certain changes within, the NAE book safe harbor method.

Beliveau Law Group: Massachusetts | Florida | New Hampshire

The tax attorneys at the Beliveau Law Group provides legal services for federal and state tax law as well as tax returns. The law firm has offices and attorneys in Naples, Florida; Boca Raton, Florida; Danvers, Massachusetts; Waltham, Massachusetts; Quincy, Massachusetts; Manchester, New Hampshire and Salem, New Hampshire.

No Trustee Fiduciary Breach Where Purchaser of Estate Property Flipped Property (Fla. App.)

Sloan was the trustee for the Hemphill trust, created by a pour-over will, which provided income payments to the beneficiaries, the settlor’s children, until age 25 at which time their trust share could be distributed. In her capacity as trustee, Sloan listed trust property, Keysville Road Grove, for sale. She retained a real estate attorney and listed the property for $1.225M. The plaintiff beneficiary had [Read more…]

Be sure to update your estate plan when your finances change

In the recent economic downturn, many homes lost considerable value and stock portfolios gyrated. If this is the case for you, then you should consider reviewing your estate plan.

If your will divides your estate into percentages for beneficiaries, then changes in value won’t affect the proportions by which your estate is distributed. However, if you have included specific bequests in your will, then a rise or fall in your net worth could have significant consequences. For example, if your estate plan gives $50,000 to your favorite charity and the rest of your estate to your children, a reduction in the value of your estate could mean your children won’t get as much as you intended. [Read more…]

Does your will name an alternate beneficiary?

What will happen to your estate if your primary beneficiary – the person you name to inherit your assets – dies before you do? If your will doesn’t name an alternate beneficiary, then your estate will be divided according to state law – which might mean it will go to someone you don’t like, or someone who is unable to handle significant assets.

For example, suppose your will divides your estate equally among your children. If one child dies before you do, what do you want to happen to that child’s portion? Should it be divided among the other children? Should it go to the deceased child’s spouse, or to the deceased child’s children? What if the grandchildren are young – should it go into a trust for their benefit? [Read more…]

Charitable remainder trusts: Income for life and a good deed at death

Many people like the idea of leaving a bequest to a favorite charity in their will. But an interesting alternative is to put assets now into a charitable remainder trust.

A charitable remainder trust is a trust that provides you (and possibly your spouse) with income for life. The trust can pay you a certain amount of income each year from investments, or you can choose to be paid a percentage of the trust assets each year. When you die, the “remainder” in the trust goes to the charity or charities of your choice.

Charitable remainder trusts have many advantages. For instance:

  • At the time you create the trust, you’ll receive an income tax deduction for charitable giving. The deduction is based on the present value of the amount that will eventually go to charity. [Read more…]

‘Daily money managers’ can help seniors with financial matters

Having difficulty keeping on top of your bills and other financial issues? Maybe a “daily money manager” can help.

A daily money manager is a person who is experienced in dealing with financial matters that can build up and cause problems if they aren’t taken care of, ranging from paying routine bills to filling out complex medical claims. Daily money managers are members of a relatively new profession that now has its own professional association. [Read more…]

Who is responsible for paying a deceased relative’s debts?

The loss of a loved one is difficult to cope with, but if the loved one left debts behind, it can be even tougher. It’s important to know who is responsible – and who is not responsible – for the debts of a deceased person.

This is even more true now than in the past, because creditors and debt collectors have become very aggressive lately about contacting a deceased person’s family members and trying to get them to pay debts. These debt collectors have been known to lie about a family member’s obligation to pay a debt. They sometimes have been trained to sound full of sympathy and compassion, but really they just want someone – anyone – to pay them money, whether or not the person actually legally owes it. [Read more…]

Makes Estate Planning Simple

“David was most valuable in assisting me with initial preparation, and update, of my Estate Plan. In addition, his staff was able to advise me on a small matter employment matter. Throughout, they were responsive to my needs and schedule, and provided me with significant peace of mind” – Tom, Estate Planning client

Highly Recommended

“I am a real estate investor, divorced father, as well as a business owner, and have hired many attorney’s through the years to handle various legal issues. In my experience, most attorney have been overpriced, unresponsive, and less than concise with their advice. I am extremely cynical when it comes to the legal profession and can honestly say that Attorney Beliveau ranks as one of the most honesty, trustworthy, and knowledgeable in his field. His background is extensive and the resources and people that he surrounds himself with make his practice an invaluable asset to my business. Attorney Beliveau and his office have worked with me on my estate planning, real estate dealings, and various issues that have presented themselves and needed immediate attention. I highly recommend Attorney Beliveau and have recommended him to many clients, friends, and family.” – Louis DV, Estate Planning client

Wouldn’t hesitate at all to employ his services

“I had a Revocable Trust and Will written up by David Beliveau Law Group in 2007 and a subsequent amendent to the document in 2011. David was very helpful, taking time to explain the contents of the statements and implications. I wouldn’t hesitate at all to employ his services again in any future legal matters.” – John A. Salem, NH

The Only Attorney You Will Ever Need

“Attorney Beliveau came highly recommended and we quickly came to understand why. Having no experience with the difficult situation we were in, Attorney Beliveau was patient in explaining the process we were to go through, thorough in evaluating several different scenarios, and realistic about the outcome of our case. He was responsive, straightforward and rational in a very difficult time. He went above and beyond to find the answers we needed and to obtain the results we were looking for. Beliveau is aggressive and assertive in the courtroom, yet stands out for his personable style, his calm demeanor and steady hand in emotionally charged situations, and his ability to never lose sight of his client’s best interest. We felt nothing but confident in Attorney Beliveau’s representation and were extremely pleased with the work that he did, and the results that he achieved. He is an exceptionally skilled attorney and we would recommend his services to anyone in need of legal representation.” – MaryEllen Thomas Salem NH, a Family Law client

Great Attorney for Wills and Trusts

“David Beliveau did a great job on our wills and trusts. He helped make a complex process easily understandable and walked us through each step of the process. My wife and I are both attorneys and we had plenty of questions and changes; David answered every question and handled all of our changes skillfully. We would be happy to work with David again.” – Craig, a Wills client

Trustworthy, Knowledgeable, Informative, and Sincere

“David is definitely an expert in his area of estate planning as well as family law related to prenupts especially. A friend recommended David to me for a prenupt, and he was extremely thorough, and shared a wealth of knowledge with me during the process. He was reasonable when it came to price, and was upfront about the cost. David also helped me set up an LLC business, and gave me advice on that after it was set up. Again, he is an expert and gave me the pros and cons for each type of business I was interested in setting up, and let me make the best decision based on my needs. He was very fair again with regard to his fee. David also is helping me with some estate planning currently, and already had done a will for me a few years ago to meet my needs at the time without much cost. He has a good network for other attorneys with other services, and has helped me in emergencies by contacting them directly and putting me in touch with others that were outside of his expertise. I am very glad I know David, and will always use his services whenever I need them and always recommend him to anyone who wants a good reliable lawyer that they can actually trust and depend on.” – Estate Planning client

As thorough as they come, and very responsive.

“Mr. Beliveau is as thorough as they come, and is very responsive to clients’ needs. He and his team have been outstanding to work with, and have made our estate planning easy to understand, while simultaneously delivering the necessary level of complexity for a well-designed plan. He is collaborative with other specialists in such planning, and the ability to consult with tax experts in his firm is a major plus.” –  Jim, a Estate Planning client

Trust property could be tied up by a long-term lease

A Texas man put some ranch property into a trust. The trust was designed to pay regular income from the property to the man’s son. When the son died, the ranch was to go to his grandson.

The trustee (a bank) entered into a long-term lease for the property. The result was that when the son died, the grandson didn’t get the ranch all to himself; instead, he inherited it subject to the lease, which meant he couldn’t immediately sell it.

The grandson sued the bank trustee. But a Texas appeals court sided with the bank. [Read more…]

Creating ‘conservation easements’ to save taxes becomes easier

If you own land that you want to pass on to your heirs, but you also want to make sure that some historic, scenic, or agricultural value will be maintained and not destroyed by future development, you might be able to accomplish this with a “conservation easement”…and also save taxes at the same time.

A conservation easement is a restriction on your land that says it can never be developed in certain ways. When you create such an easement, you give it to a charity – usually one that has been created to preserve some historic, scenic or agricultural heritage. In some cases you can also give the easement to a government agency.

After that, the charity or agency has the right to enforce the easement and prevent such future development. [Read more…]

Now’s a good time to review your beneficiary designations

Did you know that your will does not determine who gets your IRA or your 401(k) account when you die?

That’s right – these accounts are “non-probate” assets, which means they’re not covered by your will. Instead, they will generally go to whatever person you named as the beneficiary when you set up the account.

Similarly, your will doesn’t determine who gets your life insurance – that will go to the named beneficiary on the policy. And your brokerage account might have a beneficiary as well.

So as part of your estate plan, it’s essential from time to time to review your beneficiary designations.

For example:

  • You’ve remarried, but you want to leave your 401(k) to your children from your prior marriage. Under federal law, even if you name the children as beneficiaries, your account will go to your new spouse – and not your children – unless your new spouse signs a waiver. [Read more…]

Have you picked the right person as your executor or trustee?

Before you name someone as an executor or a trustee in your will – or before you agree to be an executor or a trustee – it’s a good idea to review exactly what responsibilities are involved.

These are serious jobs, and sometimes people don’t give enough thought to which person should be chosen.

Often, people simply name a spouse, a child, or a family friend. This might seem like a logical choice, and the person might expect to be given such a role, but that doesn’t mean they’re necessarily the best person for the job – particularly if they’re not detail-oriented, good with figures, and adept at handling money. Many people who quickly agree to act in these roles later come to regret it.

An executor’s job typically lasts about a year, and involves a lot of responsibility. Most executors hire an attorney and sometimes other professionals to help them through the steps and make sure they don’t make any mistakes. However, you’ll still want to pick someone who is willing and responsible enough to handle the often difficult and time-consuming tasks.

These tasks typically include:

  • Locating the deceased person’s will (the original, not a copy) and filing it for probate.
  • Obtaining a death certificate, obtaining an estate tax ID number from the IRS, and setting up an estate bank account.
  • Notifying beneficiaries and other potential heirs. [Read more…]

We found out after buying our Waltham property that the title wasn’t clear.

Additional  Information:

How do I know if I have a claim? We paid for a title search/insurance, but found out after buying our Waltham property that the title was never clear.  After we moved to MA and moved in, we received a certified letter in the mail stating that our property had been auctioned off for back taxes and would no longer be ours if we did not pay over two years worth of back taxes, including interest and fees, within months. We consulted a lawyer and found that the title had a lein against it and had never been filed. We paid all of the taxes and filed the deed. We have evidence that we paid for a title search & title insurance. Do we have a claim?

ATTORNEY ANSWER:

If you purchased an Owner’s policy of title insurance, the first thing you should do is to contact the title insurance company and file a claim regarding your title issue.  When you closed, the title insurance policy that you purchased is supposed to protect you against most title issues that occurred prior to the time of your purchase.  The title company will research the claim and if it is decided that your policy does cover you for the title issue, the title company may reimburse you for what you had to pay to make you whole again.

[Read more…]

Scams against the elderly: Know the danger signs

News of yet another investment scam is alarming enough, but when the victim is elderly, the crime seems especially offensive. Senior citizens are a favorite target of con artists for a variety of reasons. Here are some popular schemes to look out for.

Scams take many forms, but those involving gold and precious metals are especially problematic right now. Buying gold is trendy, and it can appeal to a senior’s desire for tangible security. Naturally, scammers will take advantage of this appeal. If someone you know is elderly and considering a gold-related investment, make sure they do their homework and work with a reputable company. Anyone pitching gold as a safety net against doomsday scenarios or hyperinflation should be carefully vetted. [Read more…]

Are you prepared for these common business problems?

When the economy is uncertain, you must be extra-careful to avoid the types of disasters that could ultimately lead to your company’s demise. Fortunately, some advance planning may prevent or alleviate severe problems. Here are seven common scenarios facing owners and managers of small to mid-sized businesses.

  1. A natural disaster damages the premises. Of course, you can’t control the weather or other unforeseen circumstances. But damage to a business building caused by a natural disaster could temporarily shut down the operation. It can even ultimately put you out of business. Make sure that you have adequate insurance and that valuable business data is stored at a secure site. [Read more…]

Make time for a year-end tax review

Time is running out for moves you can make to reduce your 2011 tax bill. Some actions to consider right now:

  •  Be sure to max out your 401(k) plan at work. This year you can sock away $16,500 ($22,000 if you’re 50 or older).
  •  Establish a pension plan for your small business. You may qualify for a tax credit of up to $500 in each of the plan’s first three years.
  •  Plan year-end purchases of new or used business equipment to take full advantage of the expensing limit of $500,000 for 2011. Purchases of new equipment (not used) can qualify for first-year 100% bonus depreciation.
  •  Get your investment records in order so you can make wise year-end sell decisions, either to rebalance your portfolio at the lowest tax cost or to offset gains and losses.
  •  Track down reinvested dividends for any stock sold in 2011. They’ll add to your cost basis and reduce taxable gain or increase deductible loss on the sale.

If you’d like to discuss tax-cutting options that fit your particular situation, please contact us soon for a year-end planning review.