July, 2011

Standard Mileage Rate Changes to 55.5 cents/mile July 1

July 1 the mileage rate will change from 51 cents to 55.5 cents per mile. This was announced June 23.

This means YOU NEED TO GO CHECK YOUR AUTO MILEAGE and write it down if you’re going to deduct any kind of auto expense this year. Even if you use actual costs, we need to know the mileage.

S Corporations on the Web—Home Office

If you are only working from home, and the use is exclusive and regular, you may qualify to deduct expenses for the office space. Just posted: the Home Office segment of a web based CPE class for S Corporations based on the live in-person seminar so you don’t have to travel, and at a reduced cost. Take a look here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h3ZuW8pFbg8

We’re posting these on YouTube.com so you can watch for free—the information “belongs” to everyone. However, CPE credit costs money (the format, and order that it is presented in, is copyrighted material), plus I think you should be able to sample a seminar before you pay for it. There will be a nominal fee for the CPE credit, or you can make a “contribution” to encourage my behavior (NOT tax deductible). IRS CPE is already available to those who complete the verification sheet (once all the segments are posted). Credit for CTEC will follow—we need to complete the series plus create quiz questions before applying for CTEC approval.

More segments to follow! I’ll also be posting the handout as a PDF as well as the “verification sheet” you’ll need to complete, but only if you want CPE credit.

Tax Buddha Messenger Bags

Want to be the first person in your tax bracket to sport the fabulous Tax Buddha Messenger Bag? I’ve now got a “shop” on Café Press at www.cafepress.com/TaxBuddha in case you’d like to order your own Tax Buddha logo items. The messenger bag came out particularly well, not quite “saffron,” but easy to find in an airport.

The Eightfold Path to Pay Less Tax and Avoid an Audit

Eight basic things business owners want to know printed in a booklet in “executive summary” form. This is ten years of working with the IRS Tax Code distilled down so it doesn’t take YOU ten years.

Just another way we’re trying to simplify your life. And the purchase is tax deductible!

You can order from Amazon.com. Here’s the link to Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Eightfold-Path-Less-Avoid-Audit/dp/0615233422/ref=sr_1_22?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1226611038&sr=1-22 

The booklet also contains sections on how returns are selected for audit, when to seek professional help, and how long to keep your tax records.

EBAEA—Speaker Development Group

I’m tired of going to see boring speakers for my continuing education requirements, so at the East Bay Association of Enrolled Agents, we’ve started a group to help develop speaking skills. We’ll meet Saturday, July 30th, from 4 to 6 pm at 3333 Fernside Drive in Alameda, just around the corner from the High Street bridge to Oakland. Go to the “permalink” for the current bulletin for more information http://www.ebaea.org/Bulletin/current.pdf

Classes—Basic Payroll, Schedule C, Household Employees, and SEE Classes

Here’s a link to the seminars page on my website: www.taxbuddha.com/seminars.html

Basic Payroll
In conjunction with the IRS and EDD, I’m going to be doing some Basic Payroll seminars coming up in the near future.

Basic Payroll Seminar runs 9 am ­ 3 pm with an hour for lunch

The next seminars will be:

San Francisco at the SBA office 455 Market Street, 6th floor (I take BART to Embarcadero or Montgomery Street)
10 am ­ 4 pm, July 12

Oakland at Elihu M. Harris State Building, 1515 Clay Street, Room 20, Second Floor,
9 am ­ 3 pm, June 21

San Rafael at 120 N Redwood Drive, 2nd Floor
9 am ­ 3 pm, August 30

Register by going to http://www.edd.ca.gov/Payroll_Tax_Seminars/ and find your favorite location.

These seminars have proven to be very popular for business owners and bookkeepers, plus they’re free.

How to Prepare your Own Schedule C
Prepare your business taxes for this year and get ready for next year. Review what the IRS wants to know from you and how to report it on the Schedule C for your business. This is a class for business owners who need a basic understanding of their 1040 Schedule C tax forms. We’ll also talk about what to do with the numbers once you have them. We can’t guarantee you won’t get audited, but this class will make it less likely.

I will be at the US Small Business Administration offices in San Francisco at 455 Market Street, 6th Floor
Tuesday July 19th, 6:00 pm ­ 8:30 pm.
This class will be free. To register, check out the SBA website www.SBAtraining.eventbrite.com, or just show up.

Household Employees
This is an update class for both employers and the tax practitioners who help them. This is currently scheduled for January, 2012 in Lafayette. The cost to attend this class will be$75.

SEE Classes
The Special Enrollment Exam is a three part test to qualify to become an Enrolled Agent, and the East Bay Chapter of Enrolled Agents is offering a class series to help you pass. I’m teaching a couple of the segments—but if you’re interested, you should attend the whole series which starts July 9th. I’ll be teaching Saturday 7/16 Itemized Deductions and Tax Credits, 9 am to 4 pm, and August 20th Losses and Partnerships, also 9 am to 4 pm. Sign up here if you’re interested: http://www.ebaea.org/EBAEA_SEE_CLASS_FLIER11.html

If you’re in the market for QuickBooks training in a classroom setting, I recommend Mani Business Services. This is a two-day QuickBooks seminar offered in various places around the country. The website is http://www.manibusinessservices.com/

Phone and Fax Numbers

Our northern California physical office is shared commercial space in Alameda, which is currently undergoing a bit of construction over the summer, so we’ve been meeting people at Starbucks on Mt. Diablo Blvd in Lafayette near the mailing address.
Phone numbers are:
Phone (510) 332-0401
Fax (925) 478-2726 (new)
Our mailing address:
3527 Mt. Diablo Blvd #366
Lafayette CA 94549

“You too can be enlightened about tax” — Tax Buddha