Month: March 2018

Tax Changes for 2017

TAX REFORM 2017

Let’s look at some of the tax changes for 2017. The changes will affect many taxpayers, some changes will make you happy and others you are not going to like. Originally, there was some buzz about going from seven tax brackets to five. The new tax brackets are better than the previous brackets in my opinion. Our tax brackets for 2017 starts with 10% the income range is the same as 2016 for all filing status. The 15% tax bracket was replaced with 12% tax bracket the income range is the same as 2016 for the 15% bracket. Our next bracket and last one included in this article is 22% down from 25% in 2016. The difference starts in MFS (Married Filing Separately) the income ranges from $38,701 to $82,500 which is different from 2016 which was up to $78,075.

The Standard Deduction increased for next tax season. I would be happy except the exemption credit was phased out due to the increase in the standard deduction. This is where families will see the difference in their refunds. In prior years the exemption credit increased by $50 every year. In 2016 the exemption credit was $4,050 per person on your return. Example: A family with husband, wife and four children would receive an exemption credit of $24,300 plus standard deduction of $9,350.

The new standard deduction for HOH will be $18,000 up from $9,350 almost a double increase. Will lose the $4,050 exemption credit.

Child and Dependent credit increased to $2,000 per child under 17, taxpayers will not receive the whole $2,000 as a refund. The refund portion will be up to $1,400 per qualifying child and nonrefundable dependent credit of $500 for non-qualifying children.

Moving Expense Deductions will not be allowed on tax returns for the 2017 tax year. Alimony is no longer deductible by the person paying alimony or included in income for the person receiving it after December 31, 2018. That sounds great for the person receiving alimony not so good if you must pay it. Casualty losses are no longer allowed unless it is from a presidentially declared disaster. Miscellaneous deductions have been removed which means union dues, tax preparer fees, uniforms, etc. will not be allowed going forward.

There are a lot of changes for the 2017 tax season. Be prepared to bring more information if you are claiming the Head of Household filing status this year.

Note: There may be some changes before the 2017 tax filing season starts.

Have a Fantastic Year and Enjoy Tax Season!

Questions and Answers on Structured Settlements

Q: What are Structured Settlements?
A: If you have been involved with a lawsuit involving personal injury settlements, your attorney may suggest that you consider structured settlements. This is when your case involves settling for a large amount of money, and often the other side’s attorney will offer a plan for you to receive the settlement amount over a proposed period of time, rather than all at once in a lump sum. The payouts can range from an annual payment over a period of 10 years, for instance, to perhaps a payment twice a year. The party who is settling with your regarding your personal injury settlements will purchase an annuity which guarantees the full payment over time.

Q: Would I Benefit From Structured Settlements?
A: Avoiding a large tax impact can be one of the main benefits of accepting lawsuit payments through structured settlements. When properly organized, your tax obligations in regard to the amount you have received from the personal injury lawsuit settlement may be reduced, or in some cases may even be tax free. Someone who has been severely injured and will have years of on-going medical care and special needs may benefit from this type of settlement. In a situation of a wrongful death case where there are young children, structured settlements may be utilized to pay for the cost of college in the future.

Q: What are the Drawbacks of Structured Settlements?
A: You may not borrow against the future payments of your personal injury settlements. For instance, let’s say you’d like to purchase a home. If you receive an annual payout this may help for your income qualifications on the house, but you cannot access the annuity to put a down payment on the property. The amount of return on the annuity may be less than the amount you may be able to receive if you were managing the full settlement yourself.

Q:Is it True I Can Sell My Structured Settlements?
A: Yes, this can many times be done. There may be laws or restrictions which will come into play. Certain insurance companies which are handling the lawsuit payments may have restrictions on a sale to a third party. This can be an arena where unscrupulous business are shopping for a good deal, and offer you a low amount, but for a quick payout. Annuity buy outs are not always the best answer, and often may need to be approved by the court. At the very least, seek the advice of your personal injury attorney before entering into an agreement to sell through annuity buy outs.

Contact The Law of Jeffrey S. Dawson today at 949/861-2191 for a free consultation to discuss your personal injury case. Jeff Dawson is a uniquely qualified personal injury lawyer. He has worked on the other side, as well – for the insurance firms, and knows how they think. If you have been involved in an accident where you have suffered injuries, contact the law offices of Jeffrey S. Dawson to discuss your potential lawsuit settlement.

Finest Way to Locate Your Money!

The advantage designation that works best at any given point in one’s life will depend to a great extent on time skyline and the capacity to endure hazard.

Rather than settling on any dishonorable choice, it is ideal to begin by choosing what blend of stocks, securities and shared trusts you need to hold, this alludes to as resource assignment.

A forceful speculator or one with a high hazard resistance are more presented to danger of losing cash keeping in mind the end goal to show signs of improvement results. A preservationist financial specialist or a speculator with a generally safe resilience tends to support ventures that will safeguard his or her unique venture. In the expressions of the renowned saying preservationist financial specialist keeps a “fledgling in the hand” while forceful speculator looks for “two in the shrub”.

Regarding the matter of contributing, hazard and price are inseparably woven. All speculations include some level of danger, if that you mean to buy securities, for example, stocks, securities, or shared stores it’s critical to comprehend before contributing that one can lose some or the cash’s majority. Be that as it may, other resource classifications including land, valuable metals and different products and private value additionally exist and a few financial specialists may decide on these advantage classifications. Before making any speculation it is huge to appraise the dangers and verifying that they are fitting for the person.

By blending resource classifications with venture gives back that climb and down under diverse economic situations inside of a portfolio, a speculator can ensure FTS asset locators against noteworthy misfortunes. By putting resources into more than one advantage classification, one can slice the danger to lose cash and portfolio, along these lines general speculation returns may have a smoother ride.

The act of spreading cash among distinctive ventures to diminish danger is known as “expansion”. This technique can be perfectly summed up by the evergreen expression. “Try not to put all your investments tied up on one place”. It includes spreading cash among different segments with the expectation that if one speculation loses cash alternate ventures will compensate for those misfortunes.

It is imperative that how financial specialists circulate their venture crosswise over sparing vehicles, including assessor records, duty excluded records, expense conceded records, variable extra security approaches, establishments and coastal versus seaward records. Asset location is an assessment minimization method that exploits the way that diverse sorts of speculations get distinctive duty medicines.

Structured Settlements – What Are They?

What is a Structured Settlement Annuity?

A Structured Settlement Annuity (SSA) is a contract issued by an insurance company that originated from a legal action such as a car accident, workplace accident, wrongful death, medical malpractice, etc. The original claimant (plaintiff) elected to accept a series of payments instead of a lump sum settlement. This series of payments are guaranteed by an US based insurance company and is in the form of a fixed annuity.

In about 20% of the cases the claimants (or their heirs) elect to sell their SSAs (in full or part) in exchange for a discounted lump sum of cash today.

What is the process when a Claimant decides to sell their SSA?

Claimants that are considering selling their SSAs seek out factoring companies which are institutions that buy SSAs. Claimants are looking to get the largest lump sum of cash today in exchange for the rights that they give up to receive those future payments.

This process must go through the court system which protects both the claimant and the factoring company in the selling of the SSA. Once the agreement is made and approved by the courts the factoring company pays the original claimant the agreed upon amount in a lump sum and the claimant signs off on all rights to receive those future payments.

When a factoring company buys a SSA from a claimant they then offer to sell those court ordered rights to recoup the funds that they paid out. Some factoring companies package the SSAs and sell them on Wall Street or to large institutional investors and pension plans. Some factoring companies sell them to individual investors through a network of brokers as a Safe Money alternative which are good choices for both IRA funds and non-IRA funds.

The payment streams can be either ongoing monthly payments for a set period of time or can come in the form of a deferred lump sum.

The safety rests in the insurance company that is backing the payment stream. In addition, in most states there are State Guarantee Associations which back the principal of these annuities up to a certain amount. These are fixed annuities and as such they are afforded this protection.

The court process is designed to protect all parties. The court sends a letter to the underlining insurance company notifying them that their policy-owner (the claimant) has sold the rights to their contract to the new owner. Once the insurance company responds and accepts (Acceptance Letter) that transfer of ownership the security to the new purchaser is complete.

Make Goal Based Investing to Realize Your Financial Goals

Life is all about setting different goals and achieving them one after another. As Tony Robbins said setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible. When each rupee you invest has a definite purpose behind it, is called Goal based investing.

Goal based financial planning is done for long term, midterm and short term gains. Long term plans usually yield more wealth comparing the other two. A midterm plan could be buying a home where a short term plan may be having a car.

How it is Different from the Traditional Approach
Unlike the traditional approach of investing, goal based investing does not only focus on your risk profile, rather its focus remains on achieving the target. The investment plans should be designed by keeping the goal at the centre.

The focal point of the traditional approach remains in selecting areas that ensure safe returns. It finds a safe and sure path to grow money. Whereas, in Goal based investing, realization of the goals defines its ultimate success. Wealth generation is not the sole target.

Goal based investment plans get designed only after doing a detailed research of the investor’s net worth, level of risk-tolerance and financial goals. In case of traditional approach, first the risk quotient is calculated and according to that a pre-designed investment plane gets selected.

Benefits of Goal Based Investing

In life, each rupee you spend is a type investment that yields certain results for you. If your goal based investments are planned, well thought out and work for achieving specific goals then they do not affect each other. The benefits of making goal based investments are-
It engages you in making systematic approach toward a better money management.
It is nothing but a good habit that restricts you from making spur of the moment purchases.
Channelizes your money toward building value assets and wealth through proper financial planning.
Increases the achievability of the financial goals of your life.
You can continuously monitor and make changes to your plan in order to reach closer to your desired financial goals.

How to plan a Goal Based Investing

Planning a goal based investment requires-
You have to make a list of important life goals that you need to achieve. You should prioritize them according to their importance.
Analyze your money needs. It will help you in clustering your investments according to the upcoming life events.
Cluster your investments in three sections- 1) Short-term, 2) Mid-term and 3) Long-Term.
Now choose suitable investment plans and start investing.

Short Term Goal based investments are made to fulfill impending requirements that are going to arise in next 2 years. You have to choose less volatile and low risk areas to invest as you need to turn them into liquid soon.

Mid-term Goal based investments are those where you need the return in next 3-10 years. Long-term goals may include retirement and child’s higher education. To meet such kind of goals, you need to accumulate large corpus. For that, you have to give good effort to identify pre-determined asset class and make systematic investment over longer period of time. During the course of time, you should stay invested in your plan irrespective of the short-term market upheavals.

If you tie your financial investments around a time frame and specific life goals, it gets a lot easier to achieve.

How To Earn a Pretty Profit With Diamond Investing

People who are looking to invest and make money often do so by heading to the stock market. There is a definite risk in going that route, especially in recent years when the markets have been so volatile. If it’s a safer way to profits that you are looking for, investing in diamonds is the way to go. Investing in diamond is an excellent way to recover market losses, while also creating profits that are then available for other investing opportunities.When investing, you are essentially using your money to try and gain profits without any undue influence from the people or companies in which you are investing. There are definite terms and conditions in place in each transaction, which may differ in each investment. It is the type of work called for in the investment that plays a role in the agreement or contract set forth by the individual or company.

Let’s now take a moment to talk about how your investments are affected when a company starts to suffer losses. Companies seeking money from investors usually do so when they are in a tight financial spot that requires them to seek financial help. They turn to the general public when looking for that financial assistance. In these types of situations, the investments made are often in the form of shares, investment bonds, or debentures, with the investor receiving a share of profits if the financial tide turns for the company. These investments are a loan of sorts, with the advantage to the company being that they do not need to pay interest. Each investor, or shareholder, receives dividends and profit share that is dependent on the type of contract signed at the time of the investment. In the case of diamond investing, the investor receives a diamond in return for giving money to the company. They do not receive any interest or profits from the company after that transaction, but they are free to sell the diamond for a profit when the value of diamonds on the open market is on the rise.

One of the great benefits of owning a diamond, besides the status and luxury of the gem, is that it will never see its value decrease, even in cases where the demand for diamonds decreases during a particular period. The supply and demand elements that so often drive the stock market are simply not in play with diamonds, making this investment one where you simply cannot lose. Given the status and luxury of diamonds, which are very often held by kings and queens of many different countries, your investment will be one that is very wise indeed.

The diamond market never experiences a decrease in value. One thing to be aware of is that there are two kinds of diamonds out there: miners across the world dig for natural diamonds, but there are also some synthetic varieties that are hand-made in a laboratory, with the synthetic diamonds often on the market alongside the natural stones, which can help drive inflation. Diamond companies fall under the category of either a public or private limited company, with that distinction usually dependent upon the part of the world where the company resides. Some companies also fall into the semi-government category, which is where the company is owned in part by the government and in part by the residents of the country.

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