Tax Treatment of Offshore Real Estate Holdings and Foreign Housing Expenses

Posted September 19th, 2014 by George Mentz JD, MBA, CWM, MFP - International Lawyer and Award Winning Author

Summary: The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) does not require that offshore real estate be reported as a foreign financial asset such as a personal residence or a rental property held by an American expatriate or a United States Government employee working overseas. It is only when the real estate is held through a foreign entity that the interest in the entity needs to be specified and reported as foreign financial asset if the total value of all specified foreign financial assets is greater than the applicable reporting threshold. American expatriates and federal government employees working overseas must report any gain realized through the sale of foreign real estate to the IRS. These employees, who own and occupy offshore homes, are taxed the same as having domestic real estate with the exception of depreciation, which must be over 40 years. These taxpayers may claim the principal residence exclusion if they own and occupy their home for at least two years out of the five years prior to its date of sale with certain exceptions allowed. The foreign housing exclusion applies only to amounts paid for with employer-provided amounts, whereas the foreign housing deduction applies only to amounts paid for with self-employment earnings.

Posted in income tax, international tax, IRS, risk management, tax preparation, wealth management | No Comments »

Wealth Preservation and Planning for Retirement

Posted July 11th, 2014 by George Mentz JD, MBA, CWM, MFP - International Lawyer and Award Winning Author

In the last 5 years, we have transitioned in wealth management from an estate focus to a Wealth Preservation focus.

Posted in financial planning, george mentz, income tax, risk management, wealth management | No Comments »

New Sales Strategy Book – The Edge by George Mentz

Posted June 2nd, 2014 by Prof. William Byrnes

Bestselling author George Mentz has a new book that helps advisors and their clients with risk management and investment management for the 21st century. National Underwriter has published the book and will distribute the book information to hundreds of thousands of their clients. This game changing book covers issues from the Art of War to Internet Marketing. Mentz, a former Wall Street Investment Banker, is revolutionizing the wealth management world with his teachings that have been distilled into easy to read books and training guides. This book is a MUST HAVE for your sales team and potential producer who want to provide value for clients and families and also grow a business

Posted in financial planning, george mentz, income tax, international tax, IRS, risk management, Uncategorized, wealth management | No Comments »

Foreign Housing Allowance for United States Government Employees – Taxable or Non-taxable?

Posted April 10th, 2014 by Prof. William Byrnes

The gross income of United States (U.S.) citizens and resident aliens is taxable on a worldwide basis. In most cases, compensation for personal services such as employer payments for housing expenses is fully taxable as an employee fringe benefit unless specifically excluded from taxation. However, there are exceptions to the taxation of housing allowances such as the special rules for members of the clergy or Peace Corps volunteers.

Posted in international tax, Uncategorized | No Comments »

Common Tax Mistakes 2014 – Review these common mistakes. – Ten Common Tax Mistakes to Avoid

Posted April 5th, 2014 by George Mentz JD, MBA, CWM, MFP - International Lawyer and Award Winning Author

Common Tax Mistakes 2014 – Review these common mistakes. – Nine Common Tax Mistakes to Avoid

We all make mistakes. But if you make a mistake on your tax return, the IRS may need to contact you to correct it. That will delay your refund.

Posted in george mentz, income tax, Uncategorized | Comments Off

529 Plans – Education Plans – Funding – Benefits – Gifting and Taxes – George Mentz

Posted February 13th, 2014 by George Mentz JD, MBA, CWM, MFP - International Lawyer and Award Winning Author

A 529 is a plan operated by a state or educational institution, with tax advantages and potentially other incentives to make it easier to save for college and other post-secondary training for a designated beneficiary, such as a child or grandchild. Earnings are not subject to federal tax and generally not subject to state tax when used for the qualified education expenses of the designated beneficiary, such as tuition, fees, books, as well as room and board. Contributions to a 529 plan, however, are not deductible.

Posted in book, deductions, income tax | No Comments »

Conflict of Interest: Sole interest or Best Interest

Posted February 12th, 2014 by Prof. William Byrnes

The trustee must adhere to the trust provisions and the Uniform Trust Code when evaluating investments, distributions, as well as the termination of the trust.

Posted in Uncategorized | No Comments »

Trustee’s Investment Strategy: Prudent Investor Rule vs. Legal List

Posted February 10th, 2014 by Prof. William Byrnes

Diversification provides performance while also reducing unsystematic risk. There are two types of investment strategies which are used to provide this diversification: the Prudent Investor Rule or Legal List.

Posted in Uncategorized | No Comments »

State Tax Rates – Highest and Lowest – The Best and Worst Places to Live in the United States for Income Taxes

Posted February 8th, 2014 by George Mentz JD, MBA, CWM, MFP - International Lawyer and Award Winning Author

According to the Federation of Tax Advisors, these 10 states have the highest tax rates on income. These states may have variations of tax treatment for exemptions, credits, retirement, government pensions and varying definition of taxable income. Open to see the 2013 list of worst states to retire or do business.

Posted in george mentz, Uncategorized | No Comments »

Same-Sex Married Couples Jointly and Severally Liable for Tax Deficiency and Potentially Innocent Spouse Relief

Posted February 5th, 2014 by Prof. William Byrnes

It appears that same-sex couples that file joint returns are now jointly and severally liable for any deficiency that may be assessed, and by the same token the spouse of the marriage may be eligible to claim innocent spouse relief against a tax liability.

Posted in income tax | No Comments »