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KHA TAX BRIEFING – TAX CUTS AND JOBS ACT

Yesterday, Congress officially passed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA). President Trump is expected to sign the bill into law sometime between now and early January. The Act represents the largest overhaul of the Internal Revenue Code since 1986. As with any new legislation, additional interpretive guidance will ultimately be provided by the IRS and the courts in the coming months and years. Fully analyzing the Act will take some time, but we wanted to share a summary of what we currently know as well as some action items that may apply to you.

Nearly everything in the new law does not take effect until January 1, 2018. This creates a few year-end planning ideas that would need to be implemented during the few business days that remain in 2017. As always, each taxpayer’s facts and circumstances are unique and should always be considered before undertaking any particular strategy.

CHANGES FOR INDIVIDUALS:

– The Act lowers tax rates for nearly all individual taxpayers through a combination of the direct reduction of rates or the adjustment of tax brackets.
– The standard deduction will nearly double, meaning that many taxpayers who previously itemized deductions will no longer elect to do so.
– The Act eliminates personal exemptions, and eliminates or limits certain other deductions and credits.
– The child tax credit is doubled.
– Fewer taxpayers will now be subject to the alternative minimum tax (AMT), and those who are subject will have increased exemption amounts.
– The deduction for alimony payments and their inclusion in the income of the recipient has been repealed.

ACTION ITEMS FOR INDIVIDUALS:

Due to the increased standard deduction and limitations that will apply in 2018 and beyond, it may be advantageous to accelerate itemized deductions into 2017.

– Consider accelerating payment of property taxes due in January into December.
– If you expect to owe state and local income taxes for tax year 2017, consider paying your fourth quarter estimated taxes on or before December 31, 2017.
– For some taxpayers, accelerating payment of medical expenses or investment advisory fees into 2017 may be beneficial.
– Making additional charitable contributions this December may also be beneficial.

The benefits of accelerating certain itemized deductions may be limited for taxpayers whose itemized deductions are already limited under existing law. We are available to help you with these decisions.

CHANGES FOR BUSINESSES:

– The Act significantly reduces tax rates on most businesses regardless of structure:
– The tax rate on corporations is lowered from 35 percent to 21 percent, and the corporate AMT has been eliminated.
– For pass-through entities (businesses taxed as S corporations or partnerships), a new 20 percent deduction against certain income has been created. However, the benefit of this deduction will depend on several factors, including the industry in which the business operates, the amount of W-2 wages paid, and the original cost of the depreciable assets held by the business.
– Depreciation and expensing rules on fixed asset acquisitions have been enhanced. Bonus depreciation now applies to used assets and is increased to 100% on fixed assets placed in service after September 27, 2017. The maximum total cost of fixed assets that can be expensed has been increased for 2018 and beyond.
– The deduction for business interest expense will be limited in certain situations.

ACTION ITEMS FOR BUSINESSES:

Since the effective tax rate for most business income will decrease, the usual planning ideas to defer income and accelerate deductions (within the context of cash flow and general business strategy) becomes even more important this year.

– Cash method taxpayers could defer collections of receivables and accelerate payment of expenses, pay bonuses or commissions before year end, or prepay items that would be eligible for deductions in the current year.
– Consider accelerating acquisitions of fixed assets into December provided the assets can be placed in service this year.

Tax Changes as briefly as can be explained, compliments of CCH Incorporated

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Tax Cuts and Jobs Act

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Announcing new Firm Foundation logo

KHA Accountants, PLLC is proud to have been chosen to be a member since 2016 of Firm Foundation, a national accounting firm association designed by accounting professionals for progressive CPA firms. As part of Firm Foundation, we give you access to the resources, experience, and professional knowledge base of a national organization while still providing the level of service and attention that only a locally owned, independent accounting firm can offer.

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Department of Labor (DOL) – overtime rules change

On May 18, 2016 the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) released a final rule that radically increases the thresholds for overtime rules, expanding the number of employees eligible for overtime pay. Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), employees who work more than 40 hours in a week are entitled to overtime pay, unless they meet the requirements of certain wage and duties tests. The new rule doubles the minimum salary threshold from $455 per week to $913 per week (which amounts to $23,660 annually to $47,476 annually) and raises the exemption level for those considered to be “highly compensated employees” from $100,000 to $134,004 in annual salary.

Companies will have until December 1, 2016, to make determinations on which employees to reclassify as nonexempt and implement the changes. KHA Accountants and Advisors, PC understands that the DOL rule may impact major business decisions like hiring, expansion, offering new benefits or more flexible work arrangements for employees, and possibly even require reductions at your company. We can help you in assessing the effects of the new overtime-pay rule.

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KHA Accountants and Advisors Chosen as Firm Foundation Member

KHA Accountants and Advisors, PC is proud to have been chosen to be a member of Firm Foundation, a national accounting firm association designed by accounting professionals for progressive CPA firms. As part of Firm Foundation, we give you access to the resources, experience, and professional knowledge base of a national organization while still providing the level of service and attention that only a locally owned, independent accounting firm can offer.

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KHA honored as a Top 500 CPA Firm

AICPA-logoThe American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) has identified KHA Accountants and Advisors, PC as one of the 500 largest CPA firms in the United States. With more than 45,000 member firms throughout the United States, KHA is honored to be among the largest in the nation.

The AICPA’s leadership has made it a priority to establish stronger relationships with the 101 to 500 largest firms in the nation, referred to as the “G400.” This group of CPA firms represent the organizations serving America’s small and mid-sized businesses.

As part of the G400, KHA has access to updates on key issues affecting the profession as well as Washington developments and networking opportunities with other firms.

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The Individual Mandate – What Does This Mean To You?

Beginning in 2014, unless you are covered by an exemption, you are required to maintain basic health insurance coverage (known as minimum essential coverage) for yourself and any of your dependents, or pay a shared responsibility payment (a penalty). The requirement to maintain coverage or pay a penalty is generally called the “individual mandate.”

The penalty is the lesser of: (i) the greater of a flat dollar amount or a percentage of your household income, or (ii) the national average premium for the lowest-level plan providing minimum essential coverage. You must make the shared responsibility payment when you file your federal income tax return. Married individuals who file a joint return for a tax year are jointly liable for any shared responsibility payment.

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Do You Own a Business?

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The IRS has issued long-awaited regs on the tax treatment of amounts paid to acquire, produce, or improve tangible property. These new rules help the taxpayer determine what they can expense today and what they must capitalize and deduct at another time.

Generally, the regs must be followed for tax years that begin after December 31, 2013. The regs are lengthy and complex.

Please contact us to schedule some time to discuss how these changes apply to your business.

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KHA Welcomes New Partner Chris Roberts, CPA

Chris RobertsIIWe are pleased to announce, effective January 1, 2014, that Chris Roberts, CPA has been named a partner at KHA Accountants and Advisors, PC. Chris, a CPA since 1987, has been with the firm since August 2009.

Along with over 10 years in public accounting providing tax, audit and consulting services, Chris has an extensive background in corporate finance and project operations which supports KHA’s strategy of broadening our consulting service offerings to our clients, including fractional CFO services.

Read Chris’ full bio here.

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New Name, New Partner for KHA

We are pleased to announce, effective August 31, 2012, that our new firm name is KHA Accountants and Advisors, PC. The new name better represents our firm as the largest firm in Denton County, with the depth and knowledge of a national firm. As always, we will continue to provide the top quality service our clients expect.

We would also like to announce the merger of KHA Accountants and Advisors, PC with Peter McCleskey, CPA, PLLC effective November 1, 2012. Founded in 2005, Peter McCleskey, CPA, PLLC brings a strong background in engineering, real estate and small business entrepreneurship. This merger supports the growth strategy of KHA Accountants and Advisors, PC across North Texas.

Peter McCleskey joins the firm as a full partner and brings with him a staff of 5 talented individuals. Our new combined firm of KHA Accountants and Advisors, PC will serve clients from our Flower Mound and Denton locations.

Read Peter McCleskey’s bio

“We couldn’t be more excited about this merger. We share the same values and philosophies regarding excellent client service and quality work,” said Ken Hughes, President of KHA Accountants and Advisors, PC.

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KHA Has a New Name

We are pleased to announce that our new firm name is KHA Accountants and Advisors, PC. The new name better represents the character of our firm as a local firm with the depth and knowledge of a national firm. As always, we will continue to provide the top quality service our clients expect.

In addition, KHA Accountants was named the Best Certified Public Accountant in Allen Publishing’s Best of Denton County 2012 Awards, and Ken Hughes was selected as the Best Certified Public Accountant in Denton County for 2012. We are grateful to have so many reasons to celebrate!

If we can be of any service, please give us a call at (972) 221-2500.

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Jennifer Sicking Named Five Star Wealth Manager

Jennifer Sicking was awarded as a 2012 Five Star Wealth Manager and will be featured in the August edition of Texas Monthly (Dallas/Fort Worth region). Award candidates were evaluated against 10 objective criteria, such as client retention rates, client assets administered, and a favorable regulatory and complaint history. The resulting list of 2012 Five Star Wealth Managers is a select group, representing less than seven percent of the wealth managers in the Dallas/Fort Worth region. Jennifer would like to thank all of her clients for their loyalty and patronage.

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Dana Haynie Named Best CPA in Readers Choice Awards

Residents of Flower Mound and Lewisville have named Dana Haynie as the best Accountant – CPA in the Lewisville Leader 2012 Readers’ Choice Awards.

Dana Haynie wins best CPA in Readers' Choice Awards

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Dana joined KHA Accountants and Advisors, PC in 1999 and works with a diversified client base in the area of tax and consulting services. Her client primarily are larger businesses, their owners, and high net worth individuals. She is the primary contact for clients seeking consultation in the area of estate planning and compliance.

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Ken Hughes and Associates Named Best Certified Public Accountant

Ken Hughes & Associates was named the Best Certified Public Accountant in Allen Publishing’s Best of Denton County 2011 Awards. Every year hundreds of businesses are nominated and voted for by the readers of The Flower Mound Connection and other local papers owned by Allen Publishing. The writing staff plays no role in the determining process, leaving the choice up to the community.

Our firm has also been nominated for Best Certified Public Accountant and Best Certified Public Accounting Firm in this year’s poll.

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Connect with Us

For the latest happenings at KHA Accountants and Advisors, PC, as well as helpful tax tips and financial planning insights, we invite you to connect with us on Twitter @KenHughesAssoc or join our Facebook Group.

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