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Business owners, resolve to make 2018 more profitable with savvy strategic planning.


Some say that annual budgets, like rules, are made to be broken. If it looks like you’ll go over budget this year, consider this a good opportunity to make some beneficial changes to your business.


Succession planning requires a wide view of many valuation issues.


Contributions to qualified retirement plans generally are tax deductible or pretax. If you’re self-employed, you can boost your tax-advantaged saving by setting up a retirement plan for 2017.


Company founders can’t live in denial about succession planning.


In continued celebration of our 20th anniversary, we would like to introduce you to another partner at Berger & O’Toole, CPAs, LLC; Stephen Jensen. Stephen joined the firm in August of 2010.


As we continue to look forward to our 20th anniversary this year, we want to take this opportunity to introduce you to our fourth partner, Joe Pritchard. Joe joined our team in October 2012 and he runs the Berger & O’Toole office in Spalding, NE.


Together with Bob Berger, Dennis O’Toole founded Berger & O’Toole, an accounting firm, in 1997.


To help us celebrate our 20th anniversary in 2017, we will be introducing you to the talented members of the Berger & O’Toole, CPAs team. We start with partner Robert Berger, who founded Berger & O’Toole, CPAs, LLC in 1997 with Dennis O’Toole. Prior to joining forces with Dennis he founded Freed and Berger, CPAs in 1987.


As the new tax season begins here are some of the reasons why you should be working with an accountant.

The IRS has released the 2018 optional standard mileage rates to be used to calculate the deductible costs of operating an automobile for business, medical, moving and charitable purposes. Beginning on January 1, 2018, the standard mileage rates for the use of a car, van, pickup of panel truck will be:

  • 54.5 cents per mile for business miles driven (up from 53.5 cents in 2017);
  • 18 cents per mile for medical and moving expenses (up from 17 cents in 2017); and
  • 14 cents per mile for miles driven for charitable purposes (permanently set by statute at 14 cents).

Comment. A taxpayer may not use the business standard mileage rate after using a depreciation method under Code Sec. 168 or after claiming the Code Sec. 179 deduction for that vehicle. A taxpayer may not use the business rate for more than four vehicles at a time. As a result, business owners have a choice for their vehicles: take the standard mileage rate, or “itemize” each part of the expense (gas, tolls, insurance, etc., and depreciation).


January 1, 2018 not only brings a new year, it brings a new federal Tax Code. The just-passed Tax Cuts and Jobs Act makes sweeping changes to the nation’s tax laws. Many of these changes take effect January 1. Everyone – especially individuals and business owners – needs to review their tax strategies for the new law. The changes are huge. However, many changes are temporary, especially for individuals.


The start of a New Year presents a time to reflect on the past 12 months and, based on what has gone before, predict what may happen next. Here is a list of the top 10 developments from 2017 that may prove particularly important as we move forward into the New Year:


The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act modifies Section 529 qualified tuition plans to allow the plans to distribute up to $10,000 in tuition expenses incurred during the tax year for designated beneficiaries enrolled at a public, private, or religious elementary or secondary school. Section 529 plans used to only be allowed for college tuition, up to full tuition amounts. That provision for college tuition remains the same.


Yes, conversions from regular (traditional) tax-deferred individual retirement accounts (IRAs) to Roth IRAs are still allowed after enactment of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. In fact, in some instances, such Roth conversions are more beneficial than they were prior to 2018, since the tax rates on all income, including conversion income, are now lower. However, the special rule that allows a contribution to one type of an IRA to be recharacterized as a contribution to the other type of IRA will no longer apply to a conversion contribution to a Roth IRA after 2017.


As an individual or business, it is your responsibility to be aware of and to meet your tax filing/reporting deadlines. This calendar summarizes important federal tax reporting and filing data for individuals, businesses and other taxpayers for the month of January 2018.


Charitable contributions traditionally peak at the end of the year-end. While tax savings may not be your prime motivator for making a gift to charity, your donation could help your tax bottom-line for 2015. As with many tax incentives, the rules for tax-deductible charitable contributions are complex, especially the rules for substantiating your donation. Also important to keep in mind are some enhanced charitable giving incentives scheduled to expire at the end of 2015.


Job-hunting expenses are generally deductible as long as you are not searching for a job in a new field. This tax benefit can be particularly useful in a tough job market. It does not matter whether your job hunt is successful, or whether you are employed or unemployed when you are looking.