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Questions tagged [taxes]

For any question related to taxes and not otherwise covered by a more specific tag such as income-tax, sales-tax, etc. Whenever asking about taxes, please also specify a country tag such as united-states, canada, united-kingdom, etc.

176
votes
6answers
39k views

Found a heap of BTC but have no documentation. What do I do?

Many years ago, I bought around 400 BTC for a few hundred dollars (?) and stored them in a hard drive. Shortly after that, I lost this hard drive, wrote it off as an "Oh well" and didn't think ...
102
votes
13answers
23k views

Isn't “I bought [blank] as a tax writeoff” complete nonsense?

There's a trope in movies where people do something to keep from being bumped into a higher tax bracket (For example, in The Big Lebowski: "I'll have to check with my accountant, but it might bump me ...
88
votes
5answers
19k views

I have sole custody of my child but the child's father's brother claimed him as a tax deduction

I have court papers showing that I have full and sole custody of my son and that he was with me like 99% of the year. I let my son's father have him a few weekends last year but only a handful. My ...
78
votes
4answers
13k views

The USA “self-employment tax dodge” mystery

For non-US readers: In the US, for those who are self-employed, there are many specific taxes. One particular tax is the confusingly named "The Self-Employment Tax". Thus, if you are self-employed, ...
71
votes
8answers
21k views

Why doesn’t every company and individual use tax-havens to pay less taxes?

The main message emerging from Panama Papers, Paradise Papers, and the like, is that it is the rich, powerful and famous who make use of and benefit from tax havens. And yet, the same law that these ...
58
votes
11answers
21k views

Does my tax refund need to be as close to zero dollars as possible?

Am I doing my taxes wrong? I am receiving around 1000 dollars in tax refund, and someone tells me it should be as close as to zero as possible, I thought the tax refund was government giving back most ...
53
votes
10answers
19k views

What dissuades people from lying about where they live in order to reduce state income taxes?

Lets say you work in Chicago and live in Chicago but put your home address as somewhere in Indiana. Then every week you collect the mail that is being sent to you in Indiana. Wouldn't you save a lot ...
50
votes
6answers
9k views

Why are businesses allowed to deduct expenses from their income, while individuals generally cannot?

In general, it's an accepted principle that businesses should be allowed to deduct expenses. How did this principle come about? And why doesn't it appear to apply to individuals to the same extent? ...
50
votes
2answers
11k views

Can I hire my kid and start a Roth IRA for him?

I own an LLC, of which I am currently the sole member. It's my main source of income. I am wondering if there is a reason why I could not do the following: Hire my child as a part-time employee of ...
49
votes
4answers
5k views

Recent graduate with new job: Choose Roth 401(k), or traditional 401(k)?

I just graduated, and I'm starting a new job soon. My employer has pretty good policy for matching 401(k) contributions, so I want to invest as much as possible, especially during this first year. My ...
48
votes
3answers
13k views

If a kid makes money, do the parents take on the tax liability?

Suppose your kid (8 years old) decided to set up a neighborhood lemonade stand and by some freak occurrence managed to somehow make about $3,000. How does one manage the tax liability on that income? ...
46
votes
12answers
22k views

How much more than my mortgage should I charge for rent?

We're considering moving at some point in the future, and right now we have a mortgage on our home. So far we've been here about 3 years, and we're considering renting out our home. Obviously there ...
43
votes
4answers
16k views

How can I get a job without pushing my family's income into a higher tax bracket?

I live in Seattle and turn 18 before the year's end, and I'm told my family has an income such that if I get a job and make more than $1000, then I would push my family into a higher tax bracket. ...
43
votes
3answers
8k views

Tax implications of BTC for Rent

So I'm considering doing a trial run with my tenants and letting them pay some or all of their rent in BTC. My motivations: BTC isn't considered a currency so it's taxed as an asset under capital ...
41
votes
12answers
24k views

Why do Americans have to file taxes, even if their only source of income is from a regular job?

I live in Europe (Czech Republic) and as long as I'm simply employed at a company, I don't need to file any taxes on my own (I assume the financial department does that for me automatically). Why is ...
41
votes
6answers
12k views

What do I need to watch out for when receiving a large sum of money as a gift in Germany?

I live in Germany. If my father would want to give me a large sum of money - let's say 10,000€ - what would be the safest, least bureaucratic way to do this? I'm an apprentice and I still receive ...
39
votes
5answers
8k views

How to report $27 in cap gains affordably

I'm preparing my taxes using TurboTax's basic free tier. Last year I had $26.62 in realized long term capital gains. To report this using TurboTax, I need Premier, which is a $54 add on. Even in a ...
39
votes
2answers
4k views

What US tax laws apply to a 13 year old game developer?

I'm a thirteen year old game developer and I am wondering what the tax laws are as a minor in the US. I don't currently make any money off of my games but I'm thinking of selling on the Google play ...
38
votes
8answers
12k views

Do I have to explain the source of *all* income on my taxes?

I live in the US. A complete stranger knocked on my door, gave me a pallet of $20 bills (which in total amount to several hundred thousand dollars), and left without saying a word. As far as I can ...
38
votes
6answers
5k views

How can I adjust tax withholding so that I don't get a large Tax Refund?

I'm a few years out of college now. I've filled out my W4 accurately and I still get a tax refund every year of a pretty sizable sum. The thing is, I have student loans and I would much rather have ...
37
votes
4answers
10k views

Why is there a cap on 401k contributions?

In theory, the government wants everyone to save up as much as possible for retirement so that citizens don't end up starving when they're no longer able to work. But in practice there is a limit of ...
37
votes
5answers
5k views

How to handle the Equifax Breach this tax season?

One of the most common forms of fraud is tax return fraud. Generally you don't find out until you go to file and someone has already been kind enough to file your tax return, AND take a payment for it....
36
votes
6answers
17k views

Holding rent money for my friend which amounts to over $10k?

My close friend has just moved into an apartment with me and due to some circumstances he would like to pay me the rent money for a year upfront. The total amount will be about $11k total, and we as ...
36
votes
4answers
5k views

Deducting charitable donations under new U.S. tax law

I usually donate about $20k to charities every year, and I don't have many other deductions to claim. Given that the new tax law doubles the standard deduction to $24k, I effectively don't get tax ...
36
votes
5answers
13k views

IRS sent me a letter…I messed up by unwittingly taking money out of a Roth IRA and reporting it incorrectly

I recently received a letter from the IRS based on my taxes for 2015. I believe I did not understand the proper workings of a Roth IRA. I was under the impression I could pull my money out and only ...
35
votes
8answers
7k views

What are the differences between capital gains and other forms of income?

It appears that capital gains are treated differently than other forms of income. What are the differences in how capital gains are earned compared to other forms of income? How does the tax code ...
34
votes
11answers
12k views

I hate the high taxes in NYC. Should I incorporate in or move to another state?

I'm in NYC currently and make a good living doing remote web development work and I get a 1099 at end of year. My taxes take about 35% of my paycheck. I was thinking about incorporating in another ...
34
votes
10answers
10k views

Is it possible to make money by getting a mortgage?

I met with a financial advisor for the first time yesterday (trying to get my things in order for retirement). During our meeting he told me a story that sounded pretty impressive, but the more I ...
32
votes
8answers
9k views

Are services provided to Google employees taxed as income or in any way?

The particular service I want to look at is food (though I think the same ideas should apply to all services). So Let's say that a Google employee spends a dollar on food, purchasing groceries. They ...
32
votes
2answers
18k views

I'm giving my car to my sister. Should I gift it or sell it?

I have a car registered in Connecticut. I want to give the car to my sister in Oregon. The blue book value of the car is approximately $5000. (It will be a very generous gift - but the car was a gift ...
32
votes
5answers
3k views

Pros/Cons of a Health Savings Account (HSA) in the USA?

I am wanting to know the real benefits or pros/cons of a HSA in the USA. I have now been given the option of signing up for one due to healthcare changes. I understand some of the basics, but after ...
32
votes
3answers
5k views

How do you file taxes earlier than an identity thief?

One of the recommendations to avoid tax return fraud/identity theft is to file your taxes as early as possible: FTC Smart Money Identity Theft Resource Center USA Today Notably, the IRS does not ...
32
votes
1answer
3k views

Do I have to withhold money when buying real estate from a foreigner?

I have recently purchased a house in the U.S. for ~$375,000 (and I'm a U.S. citizen). It was disclosed to me about a week before closing that the sellers were from China. Aside from a few headaches, ...
30
votes
7answers
11k views

Someone stated that my uncle died in Canada and there is money for me [duplicate]

Someone contacted me and said that someone with a similar last name died and left me a large amount of money. He gave me information and forms from a bank, and other pertinent information. I then ...
30
votes
4answers
7k views

'Gifting' a house in the UK

In UK news recently, there has been much talk about so called 'dementia tax', that is, the government using assets (such as property) to pay for social care in old age. Whether or not people should ...
30
votes
1answer
6k views

I am a Canadian resident who wants to gift my Adult US child CAD$175K. What are the tax implications?

I am a Canadian resident who wants to gift my adult US child $175K Canadian. What are the tax implications for the US resident who resides in California?
29
votes
3answers
8k views

How could George Clooney have paid his friends' taxes?

According to an article published today in several media outlets including Fortune magazine, George Clooney once gave 14 of his friends $1 million dollars cash. The article also claims that Clooney ...
28
votes
3answers
8k views

Accountant/ lawyer will not return my call

I have an accountant who is also a lawyer who did my taxes for about 7 years. I received a notice from the IRS for the years that he filed the taxes saying that I owed $5,000. I sent him the notice ...
27
votes
3answers
9k views

Ask mother to pay off entire student loan, then pay her?

To avoid paying additional interest on my student loans, I want to ask my mother to pay off the entire loans with by lump sum, and then I would pay her back with interest. Are there any issues ...
26
votes
3answers
8k views

Am I obligated to file through a tax preparer after an unsatisfactory consultation?

I have been doing my taxes for 25 years with TurboTax. Like others, I was a bit upset at them for doubling the price of their software, so I decided I would make an appointment with H&R Block, ...
26
votes
3answers
7k views

My bank got bought out, am I now going to have to start filing tax returns in a different state?

My bank just got bought by a bank in another state. Does this mean my interest earnings are going to get reported in that other state and potentially require me to file tax returns in the other state? ...
25
votes
2answers
6k views

Why not speculate at EOY and write the loss off on taxes?

At the end of the year I will owe some money in taxes. Rather than simply pay it, I am considering making a wild bet (with options, for example), in a controlled way such that I can't lose more than ...
25
votes
2answers
5k views

Parents want to claim me

I just turned 19 so I'm a legal adult. I moved out of mothers due to neglect and abuse, but still remain somewhat friendly with her. However, she texted wanting to know if she could claim me on her ...
24
votes
6answers
10k views

Is it worth filing taxes if I only worked an internship?

This past summer I interned at a company and just got my W-2 Form. I am a 17 year old high school student which qualified for 2 Federal exemptions, 0 State exemptions, and 0 Local exemptions. I made $...
24
votes
12answers
30k views

Why would you elect to apply a refund to next year's tax bill?

Every year I get a refund and the tax software asks me if I'd like to apply some of my refund to next year's taxes. Is there some benefit I'm not seeing to this? Because it looks like a bad deal to me....
24
votes
1answer
4k views

I am distributing an inheritance based on verbal bequests. Is this considered a gift that must be reported to the IRS?

Before my mother died recently she gave me a verbal list of bequests she wanted to make that were not in her will. Some of these exceed $14k. I will be paying them out of my own bank accounts with ...
24
votes
1answer
2k views

Where to get “Form 1099-MISC” for year 2017? (You’d think this would be easy…)

On the IRS Website for current year, there is "Form 1099-Misc" for 2018. The 2018 form is due by the end of January 2019. If we click Prior Year link, we get forms for 2016. I need "Form 1099-Misc" ...
24
votes
2answers
74k views

Canada: Girlfriend did not file tax return since 2006. What to do?

I was just starting my girlfriend's tax return when I realized I didn't have her notice of assessment from 2009. I wanted her tuition carry forward so I decided to call revenue Canada to see what the ...
23
votes
5answers
16k views

My tax refund is exactly $3000. Did I hit a cap?

My tax refund this year will be $2,043 from the federal government, and $957 from New York State. That comes out to exactly $3000. I figure the chances of that happening are pretty low. Is there some ...
23
votes
2answers
4k views

What is meant by one being in a “tax bracket”?

I've always wondered but just now asking: What is meant by one being in a "tax bracket"? Does that mean only Federal, or does it include State AND Federal? For example: I (would like to) make $100K a ...