Thursday, November 12, 2015

Getting A 2nd Opinion On Your Tax Return

Our Dental CPA team recently reviewed the 2014 income tax returns for a prospective client and were shocked at some of our findings. Had we been engaged for a year-end tax planning meeting well in advance of 12/31/14, this doctor would have saved almost $35k in taxes and other areas. Here’s what we found:
–         Owner Wages Too High
The client paid themselves wages of $130k which created an S-corp loss of $30k!(Yikes). The problem is they did not have a basis in their S-corp so the $30k loss was NOT deductible. Instead, what they should have done is kept their wages at no more than $100k and the S-corp income would have been $0 which would have lowered their income tax bill by at least $10k.
–         Spouses Wages Too High
We learned that they also paid their spouse to help manage the practice, which is a good idea, however, instead of a wage of $60k they should have kept it around $30k and saved $4,500 in payroll taxes on $30k of wages. In addition, they had S-corp losses from prior years to use up so the additional S-corp income of $30k that would have resulted would NOT have been taxed, saving another $10k in income taxes.
–          Not Reporting All Expenses
There were expenses missing or almost non-existent on the client’s corporate return such as meals, entertainment, automobile expense, travel expense, etc. We were told that these expenses existed, however, their preparer told them they were too risky to take even though we knew they could be substantiated. By failing to report these expenses, the clients likely missed out on at least $5k of deductions costing them around $2k in taxes.
–         Owner Occupied Rental Activity Loss
The Corporation rents the space they practice out of which the doctor owns personally thru an LLC. The activity generated a loss of $2,500 on the individual tax return which was not deducted and as owner-occupied real estate and making the proper election they were entitled to that deduction costing them $800 in taxes.
–         Other Unaddressed Issues
There were a couple other issues with the returns resulting in an additional $1,500 in taxes that could have been avoided. They also had the wrong retirement plan that likely cost them around $5k in unnecessary employee contributions.
Do yourself a favor and contact our Dental CPA team. We are happy to provide 2ndopinions on tax returns as a courtesy. There may be something that you can do BEFORE the year ends to lower your tax liability for 2015. Our team is here to guide you through the necessary steps. Contact us at 844-DENTCPA (336-8272) or email