This is the time of year when all Americans think about their tax situation and what they might do differently to reduce their heavy tax burden. There is a record of an ancient civilization that was required to pay 50% of their earnings to their captors. They considered themselves in bondage. And yet, many Americans who earn over $100,000 per year pay far more than that in federal and state income tax, sales tax, social security tax, property tax and excise taxes.
I'm not against paying taxes for necessary government services. To the contrary. What I am opposed to is paying a dime more than I have to. But MOST OF YOU are paying far more than you have to. Why? In most cases, it's simply because you are getting poor tax advice.
The reality is that the Internal Revenue Code is full of opportunities to reduce your taxes. I have spent almost 30 years pouring through the Code and learning all of these opportunities. And I am continually learning new ways to reduce taxes. It's all a matter of understanding the law and applying it the way Congress intended. That's right, Congress intended to provide tax benefits to individuals and companies who behave a certain way. Why? Simply because Congress has long used the Internal Revenue Code as a way to promote social, energy and economic policies.
But how do you know if your tax advisor is giving you the best advice? Unless you are legally paying no taxes, you really don't. The answer, quite frankly, is to have another, experienced tax advisor review your tax returns from prior years and your current tax situation. It may be that when you were a simple wage earner that there were few ways to reduce your taxes. But now you are in business or you are investing in real estate. What's happened is that YOU HAVE OUTGROWN YOUR TAX ADVISOR!
Before you commit to another advisor, have them review your situation. Don't expect that they will give you free advice. But find out if they think they can do something different. Just the other day while reviewing a tax return I found $60,000 of taxes that a prospective client was paying that we could easily eliminate. What would you do if I found $60,000 of ANNUAL tax savings for you? I hope you would jump on this opportunity and hire me.
Whatever you do, remember that “if you always do what you have always done, you will always get what you have always got!”