Archive for the tag 'tax season'

Source: Flickr / Don Hankins

BETWEEN THE LINES: With technology continuing to progress at a steady clip, the FBI and other law enforcement agencies regularly alert the public about a parallel surge of electronic crimes related to computers, handheld gadgets and the internet, such as identity theft and phishing (fishing for personal information via suspicious emails).

In recent years, the number of identity theft incidents, due to the annual increase in E-filing of tax returns, has jumped during tax season and has reached new levels in 2012. Last year, the IRS reported more than 260,000 suspicious returns totaling more than $1.4 billion, which was discovered before it reached the wrong taxpayers. This year, so far, two million returns have been flagged for investigation.

In a nationwide crackdown, the IRS stepped up suspected identity thefts as the tax season began in January and said it investigated more than 100 people in 23 states.

Even so, the crime persists. Regrettably, I found out first-hand.

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Tuesday Tips is a series of articles from local experts to help you save money, make better decisions and plan for a better future.

Source: Howard Dickins via Flickr

The gift tax. I’m sure you’ve heard about it. I receive a lot of calls about it. But do you know what it’s all about?

What is a gift?

According to the IRS, a gift is “any transfer to an individual, either directly or indirectly, where full consideration (measured in money or money’s worth) is not received in return.”

In other words, if you give away something of value and don’t receive an equal value in return, you’ve given a gift. (So far, so good, right?)

Keep reading to find out about the gift tax treatment, exclusions and the difference between the gift tax and estate tax.

Source: Great Beyond via Flickr

Tuesday Tips is a series of articles from local experts to help you save money, make better decisions and plan for a better future.

Many of the tax cuts that were put into effect by President Bush are scheduled to expire at the end of this year. Many of those tax cuts will not be extended. In this article, accountant Joseph Reisman compiles some of the things that will – and will not – change by the time tax season rolls around. He also offers a few tips so save money if Uncle Sam is digging a little deeper into your pockets this year.

Read Reisman’s list of this season’s tax changes.