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Monday, March 12, 2018

IRS Installment Agreements

If you are financially unable to pay your tax debt immediately, you may be able to make monthly payments through an installment agreement with the IRS.

Before applying for a payment agreement, you must file all required tax returns.

You may be eligible to apply for an online payment agreement:

·Individuals must owe $50,000 or less in combined individual income tax, penalties and interest, and have filed all required tax returns.

·Business must owe $25,000 or less in payroll taxes and have filed all required tax returns.

Even if you are ineligible for an online payment agreement, you can still pay in installments:

·Complete and mail Form 9465 and Form 433-F

·Call 800-829-1040 or the phone number on your bill or notice.

Things to Consider

·Penalties and interest continue to accrue until your balance is paid in full.

·Your future refunds will be applied to your tax debt until it is paid in full.

·There may be a restatement fee if your agreement goes into default.

·You must pay at least your minimum monthly payment---on time.

·You must file all required tax returns on time.

·You must contact the IRS if you need to make any changes to your agreement.

·Ensure the IRS has your current address if you move by filing Form 8822 Change of Address.

·Include your name, address, SSN, daytime phone number, tax year and return type on your payment.

Currently, the IRS One Time Fee for a standard installment agreement or payroll deduction agreement is $120 or $52 if you choose to pay through a direct debit from your bank account.


This article was written by Donald M. Scherzi, CPA, CFP, LLC
Mike Lupo, SCORE Counselor
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Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Product, Price and Service

We recently had a good example of the subject title that could be a good learning experience. First, we purchased a small home appliance from a discount retailer.

Upon putting the pieces together and plugging it in to power, the power circuit breaker blew out.. each time it was reset and reattempted. The retailer replaced the appliance with one that would not blow the breaker, but also would not turn on at all. So we gave up and returned this second one for a refund which the retailer provided. So we received a terrible product, but received good service, but felt a lack of confidence in any event. We then purchased a replacement appliance from another retailer. The model and manufacturer were different, as was the price…slightly lower…which was a surprise as the device was of higher quality. The lack of confidence in the products carried by the discount retailer, also led us to return another small appliance UNOPENED, and received another refund. So this is a case where poor quality products led to NO SALES.

How about your business?

Steve Koenig, SCORE Counselor




Saturday, March 3, 2018

IRS Offer In Compromise

The IRS Offer In Comprise program allows you to settle your tax debt for less than the full amount you owe—if you are eligible.

Make Sure You Are Eligible

Before the IRS can consider your offer, you must be current with all filing and payments requirements. You are not eligible if you are in an open bankruptcy proceeding. You can use the IRS Offer In Compromise Pre-Qualifier to confirm your eligibility and prepare a preliminary proposal.

The IRS will generally approve an offer in compromise when the amount offered represents the most the IRS can expect to collect within a reasonable period of time.

The IRS considers each taxpayers unique set of facts and circumstances such as:

·Ability to pay


·Expenses, and

·Asset equity

IRS Form 656-B contains the step-by-step instructions and all the forms and information required for submitting an offer in compromise.

Note that the IRS will return any newly filed Offer In Compromise Application where the taxpayer has not filed all required tax returns. This policy does not apply to current year tax returns if there is a valid extension to file.

Currently the application fee is $186.00 and is non-refundable. You will also need to make an initial payment (non-refundable) with each Form 656.


Television ads suggesting you can settle for “pennies on the dollar” may be misleading. Always seek competent professionals you can trust before considering an offer in compromise.

This article was written by Donald M. Scherzi, CPA, CFP, LLC
Mike Lupo, SCORE Counselor
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Marketing Tip of The Month


Get yourself a license plate with your company name or tag line, anything that uniquely identifies you when you pull up, or that promotes you as you drive about.  I’m an Interior Designer..or was til I plate could be DECOR8. What’s yours?


Martin Kahn, SCORE Counselor

Friday, February 16, 2018

Payroll Taxes and the Trust Fund Recovery Penalty (TFRP)

To encourage prompt payment of payroll employment taxes, Congress passed a law that provides for the TFRP. These taxes are called trust fund taxes because you actually hold the employee's money in trust until you make a federal tax deposit payment in that amount. The TFRP may apply to you if these unpaid trust fund taxes cannot be immediately collected from the business. And, the business does not have to have stopped operating in order for the TFRP to be assessed.

Who Can Be Responsible for the TFRP?

The TFRP can be assessed against any person who:

1-Is responsible for collecting or paying withheld income and employment taxes, or for paying collected excise taxes, and

2-Willfully fails to collect or pay them.

A responsible person may be:

·An officer or employee of  a corporation

·A member or employee of a partnership

·A corporate director or shareholder

·A member of a board of trustees for a nonprofit organization

·Another person with authority and control over funds to direct their disbursement

·Another corporation or third party

·Payroll service providers or responsible parties within these organizations

For willfulness to exist, the responsible person:

·Must have been, or should have been, aware of the outstanding taxes and

·Either intentionally disregarded the law or was plainly indifferent to its requirements (no evil intent or bad motive is required)

The Penalty and Enforcement

The amount of the penalty is equal to the unpaid balance of the trust fund tax.

Once the IRS asserts the penalty, they can take collection action your personal assets by fiing a federal tax lien or take levy or seizure action.

Avoiding the TFRP

You can avoid the TFRP by making sure that all employment taxes are collected, accounted for, and paid to the IRS when required. Make your tax deposits and payments in full and on time.


This article was written by Donald M. Scherzi, CPA, CFP, LLC
Mike Lupo, SCORE Counselor

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Sunday, February 11, 2018

Florida Small Business Index Report

Near the end of 2017 The Florida Chamber of Commerce reported its
Quarterly Small Business Index statewide survey showing small businesses are most concerned about:
Workforce quality (18 percent),
Government regulations (17 percent),
Economic uncertainty (12 percent),
Healthcare costs (10 percent),
Lawsuit abuse (8 percent),
Access to capital (6 percent).
The Chamber reported: Of Florida small businesses, 48 percent of respondents expect to hire in the next six months.
How does your business compare?
Steve Koenig, SCORE Counselor

Thursday, February 1, 2018

Canceling an EIN "Employer Identrification Number"

If, for some reason, you have an old EIN with the IRS, the IRS can close your business account.

The IRS cannot cancel your EIN. Once an EIN has been assigned to a business entity, it becomes the permanent Federal taxpayer identification number for that entity. Regardless of whether the EIN is ever used to file Federal tax returns, the EIN is never reused or reassigned to another business entity. The EIN still belongs to the business entity and can be used at a later date, should the need arise.

If you receive an EIN but later determine you do not need the number (the new business never started up, for example), the IRS can close your business account.

To close your business account, send the IRS a letter that includes the complete legal name of the business entity, the EIN, the business address and the reason you wish to close your business account.

If you have a copy of the EIN Assignment Notice that was provided by the IRS when your EIN was assigned, include that with your letter.

Send the information to:

Internal Revenue Service
Cincinnati, Ohio 45999

To prevent potential tax issues down the road, it is a good idea to take the above steps to close your business account with the IRS.

This article was written by Donald M. Scherzi, CPA, CFP, LLC
Mike Lupo, SCORE Counselor
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