Insights

Supreme Court Bolsters Beneficiary Rights

A 2013 decision by the U.S. Supreme Court illustrates the importance of updating beneficiary forms regularly. If you don’t, your desired heirs can lose a valuable asset. This case, Hillman vs. Maretta, had its genesis in 1996, when Warren Hillman married Judy Maretta....

Estimated Taxes for Business Owners

April 1 may be April Fool’s Day, but April 15 might be considered April’s cruel day. Not only do you have to pay any income tax due for the previous year, you also may have to make an estimated tax payment for the current year. A poor estimate might result in either...

Juggling Appreciated Assets and Bequests

During your lifetime, donating appreciated assets to charity can make sense. As long as you have held those assets for more than one year, you’ll get a deduction for the assets’ current value.  The paper gain will avoid income tax. Example 1: Ava Brown wants to donate...

Learning About Mutual Fund Share Classes

Although some mutual funds are “no load,” meaning that there is no sales charge, others are load funds, with some type of sales charge. Many load funds have multiple share classes, with various compensation arrangements. If you’re buying a fund that has more than one...

The “Other” April 15 Deadlines

As you are probably aware, April 15, 2014, is the deadline for filing your 2013 federal income tax return. If you are not ready to file by then, you can obtain an automatic six-month extension until October 15 by filing IRS Form 4868 by April 15. Keep in mind that...