Weekly Digest–June 7th 2024-Proactive Tax Planning for Smaller Quarterly Estimates?

I heard and felt the “POP”, it was my left knee and really the last (ski) run of the day and vacation!  The ski patrol and medical clinic at Snowbird Ski Resort were wonderful.  I was wheeled out wrapped in a huge knee brace and instructed to rehab via spin bike and other leg strengthening exercises and wear that brace non-stop for the 6-8 weeks my MCL injury would take to heal.  The injury and healing time frame was spot-on as also confirmed by my orthopedist, luckily it was a minor tear/strain.  Tomorrow marks week 6; today I was able to walk barefoot and brace-less on the beach and able to increase my distance to 1 mile.  I have been enjoying the sunrises as usual but I have also been collecting large clam shells to weigh down the netting surrounding my kale plants hopefully preventing aphids (I surrounded them with egg shells after finding the slugs were having a field day).

Seashells in the Garden
Seashells in the Garden
Saturday Morning at the Beach⛱️🩴
Saturday Morning at the Beach⛱️🩴
Sunday Morning Sunrise Stripes
Sunday Morning Sunrise Stripes
Monday Rough Sea
Monday Rough Sea
Barefoot Tuesday Sunrise
Barefoot Tuesday Sunrise
Wednesday Waiting for the Sun
Wednesday Waiting for the Sun
Thursday Morning Socked in Sky
Thursday Morning Socked in Sky
Brace-less & Barefoot at Sunrise Today
Brace-less & Barefoot at Sunrise Today

Our office has been working on calculating estimate #2 due June 17th and I am happy to say we are ready to send out the last few notification emails.  I am looking forward to a stress-free weekend and hopefully take a bit longer brace-less barefoot walk as well.  I hope you have wonderful plans for the weekend as well.


When frustrated or angry I really do try to count to 10 and think “you catch more files with honey….” .  Our office started on-boarding a new client at the end of February, requesting prior information from the client’s prior accountant (of 20+ years).  We prepared and emailed a very detailed list but only received minimal information.  We contacted the accountant several times worried that maybe they were ignoring the client’s and our requests due to a health issue.  In the interim we contacted the IRS and NYS for some of the other critical items.  It’s been over 3 months since our first request.  Just recently we received a notice of an issue with the client’s first quarter 2024 payroll (caused by their prior accountant).  I contacted the prior accountant’s office requesting an appointment to discuss the payroll issue as well as my request for the missing documents.  Yesterday Elizabeth and I “met” with the accountant via zoom, discussed and were promised the missing items; we offered to amend the tax returns in question.  I do believe we will receive the promised documents by next week but I also feel we were able to make even this much progress by offering “busy tax season” as the probable excuse for the accountant having dragged his heals on sending us the information for so long, of course our offer to help resolve the error they created was a major factor too.


2024 Tax Estimate #2 are Due Soon: June 17th 2024

Yes, it’s that time again; it’s time to review your year-to-date income and profitability results. Let’s also put a positive spin on this exercise. You can take the time to determine what your 2024 tax liability is, as well as look to schedule an appointment with your tax professional to create or update your tax plan, hold a cash flow review and/or business operations assessment. Proactive planning may help you achieve your desired outcome.

  • First steps, review your financial statements and compare activities with your prior year, annualize and project for a full year so that you are prepared to meet your current and full year business and personal tax liability.
  • Next, consider making some changes in operations to positively affect your cash flow, life-work balance, return on investment.  Certainly look at equipment needs and use, professional services effectiveness, employee focus allocation, profit centers, etc.
  • Finally, update or create a 90 day action plan to incorporate tax plans, business goals, personal goals and exit plans

Consider Enrolling in a Health Savings Account

The Health Savings Account (HSA) amounts for 2024 are $4,150 ($8,300 for families), up from $3,850 in 2023.

These plans can enable you to pay for eligible medical expenses with pre-tax dollars; check in with your HR department to see if your company offers an HSA plan.

Copied & Pasted from IRS Publication 969 Health Savings Accounts and Other Tax-Favored Health Plans  at only 23 pages of small print can fill in the blanks for you.

“Benefits of a HSA:

  • You can claim a tax deduction for contributions you, or someone other than your employer, make to your HSA even if you don’t itemize your deductions on Schedule A (Form 1040).
  • Contributions to your HSA made by your employer (including contributions made through a cafeteria plan) may be excluded from your gross income.
  • The contributions remain in your account until you use them.
  • The interest or other earnings on the assets in the account are tax free.
  • Distributions may be tax free if you pay qualified medical expenses.
  • An HSA is “portable.” It stays with you if you change employers or leave the work force.

Qualifying for an HSA Contribution; you must meet the following requirements:

  • You are covered under a high deductible health plan (HDHP), on the first day of the month.
  • You have no other health coverage except what is permitted under the specific rules of the law
  • You aren’t enrolled in Medicare.
  • You can’t be claimed as a dependent on someone else’s tax return”

Section 213 of the Code generally allows a deduction for expenses paid during the taxable year for medical care if certain requirements are met. Expenses for medical care under section 213 of the Code also are eligible to be paid or reimbursed under an HSA, FSA, Archer MSA, or HRA. However, if any amount is paid or reimbursed under an HSA, FSA, Archer MSA, or HRA, a taxpayer cannot also deduct the amount as a medical expense on the taxpayer’s federal income tax return.

In general, medical expenses are the costs of diagnosis, cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of disease, and for the purpose of affecting any part or function of the body. These expenses include payments for legal medical services rendered by physicians, surgeons, dentists, and other medical practitioners. They include the costs of equipment, supplies, and diagnostic devices needed for these purposes. They also include the costs of medicines and drugs that are prescribed by a physician.

Medical expenses must be primarily to alleviate or prevent a physical or mental disability or illness. They don’t include expenses that are merely beneficial to general health.

This great Q & A from IRS.gov details the what is covered under payments from your HSA.


Consumers Curb US Economic Growth in First Quarter; Inflation Cools

According to this article in Reuters.com: “The U.S. economy grew more slowly in the first quarter than previously estimated after downward revisions to consumer spending and a key measure of inflation ticked down, keeping the Federal Reserve on track to possibly begin cutting interest rates at least once before the end of the year.”

Consumer Sentiment Drops to Lowest Reading in Five Months

According to a recent article in Investopedia.com:  “Consumer sentiment dipped 10.5% in May, dropping to its lowest reading in nearly five months, according to recently released data.  The final May results of the Michigan Index of Consumer Sentiment showed a decline to 69.1, a more than eight-point drop from April. The drop comes after consumer sentiment has mostly moved sideways this year.”

Beige Book –  May 2024

The May 2024 Beige Book has been published by the Federal Reserve, giving an overview of economic conditions around the country. Here is a summary of the findings:

Employment rose at a slight pace overall while prices increased at a modest pace over the reporting period: 

Overall Economic Activity

National economic activity continued to expand from early April to mid-May; however, conditions varied across industries and Districts. Most Districts reported slight or modest growth, while two noted no change in activity. Retail spending was flat to up slightly, reflecting lower discretionary spending and heightened price sensitivity among consumers. Auto sales were roughly flat, with a few Districts noting that manufacturers were offering incentives to spur sales. Travel and tourism strengthened across much of the country, boosted by increased leisure and business travel, but hospitality contacts were mixed in their outlooks for the summer season. Demand for nonfinancial services rose, and activity in transportation services was mixed, as port and rail activity increased whereas reports of trucking and freight demand varied. Nonprofits and community organizations cited continued solid demand for their services, and manufacturing activity was widely characterized as flat to up, though two Districts cited declines. Tight credit standards and high interest rates continued to constrain lending growth. Housing demand rose modestly, and single-family construction increased, though there were reports of rising rates impacting sales activity. Conditions in the commercial real estate sector softened amid supply concerns, tight credit conditions, and elevated borrowing costs. Energy activity was largely stable, whereas agricultural reports were mixed, as drought conditions eased in some Districts, but farm finances/incomes remained a concern. Overall outlooks grew somewhat more pessimistic amid reports of rising uncertainty and greater downside risks.”


We sincerely hope that you and your family are well and remain well. If you have any questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We are here for you.

If you need help with your accounting, want to create a tax minimization plan, want to discuss your business growth plan or your finances, are concerned about retirement goals or need to be held accountable for your 90 day action plan, contact us for a complimentary discovery session or an appointment to just get started

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