Protection Plus: Learn the Facts about IRS Audits and ID Theft

Learn the facts Reduced staffing and increased automated audits at the IRS (now over five million annually) make anyone susceptible to receiving an inquiry or audit from the IRS. Only 37 percent of the calls made to IRS customer service between January 1 and April 18, 2015, were answered. The average wait time for those who got through was 23 minutes 8.8 million calls received a “courtesy disconnect” or better said, were automatically disconnected due to high call volume. 17.6 million U.S. residents experienced an identity theft incident in 2014 representing one out of every 14 adu...
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BluePay: Protecting Your Tax Preparation Business Against Identity Theft and Fraud

In the U.S., there is a new identity fraud victim nearly every two seconds. Most of this theft targets financial information directly. After all, access to bank accounts and credit card information is the ultimate goal of most criminals. Yet, a lot of identity theft centers around personal information like driver's licenses, Social Security numbers, and contact details. Using these, criminals can often indirectly access sensitive financial data. As a business owner, it is important to take preventative measures to reduce identity theft within your payment environment. This article explai...
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Surgent: Foreign Gift or Bequest May Be Reportable

As people increasingly interact with individuals and businesses in other countries, tax preparers in the United States are undoubtedly becoming better acquainted with international tax issues. For example, most are aware that individuals who have a financial interest in or signature authority over a foreign financial account must comply with the Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts (FBAR). But international issues go beyond FBAR. Sometimes, as in the case of gifts and inheritances received from individuals or entities outside the U.S., they might challenge common perceptions. Ge...
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Biz2Credit: Expand Your Consulting Services to Include Small Business Funding

If you have clients who are small business owners, a few of them have likely talked to you about wanting to expand their companies. They may have also mentioned how it can be challenging to find the capital to do that. Being knowledgeable about the various types of loans allows you to help your clients grow their businesses and allows you to offer yet another valuable, billable service. Here are the various types of business loans and the basic facts you need to know about each. Lines of credit. Considered a short-term fix, a line of credit is used much like a credit card. The fundi...
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Webiquity: The Indispensable Business Owner’s Guide to Networking Online

As a business owner, you can use great networking skills to find employees and clients. You've probably heard the statistic that more than half of professional relationships in U.S. were gotten because of a connection that the professional had. This may lead you to wonder – where are they getting all these connections? Contrary to what you might think, many of them weren't just family and close friends who gave them a good reference. Using online business social networking tools has dramatically changed the landscape for online business to business marketing. So how do you do this? In...
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BluePay: Checklist for Choosing a Payment Processor

Once you've decided to accept credit cards in your practice, make sure you select the right payment processor. Here's a checklist to refer to that will help you get what you need to keep your practice on track and make your life easier. 1. PCI Compliance By electing to accept payments, your business must adhere to and comply with the PCI Data Security Standard (PCI DSS), created and updated annually by the PCI Security Counsel. A PCI compliant processor has already taken the steps to employ the highest levels of data security to ensure that your confidential business information is secur...
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HD Vest: Discover 1040 Analyst – Your Unique Advantage This Tax Season

The 1040 Analyst® can provide that comfort – meticulously designed with our Advisors in mind. It is a unique data mining tool with automation that allows you to seamlessly integrate your clients’ tax data from the Form 1040 and provide a customized client report highlighting financial services opportunities that may help them chart a new course. Watch the 1040 Analyst Webinar: Explore 1040 Analyst® and try 1040 Analyst Lite HD Vest Financial Services® is the holding company for the group of companies providing financial services under the HD Vest name. Securities offered throug...
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Track1099: New State Filing Requirements for 1099-MISC

The following table includes state filing requirements. CSF refers to Combined State/Federal program where the IRS forwards 1099-MISC info on to the state. Some states require filing by paper (if applicable, click on the link to learn more). For Massachusetts, Oregon and soon, Pennsylvania, state files may be downloaded from Track1099. State CSF Not Required ...
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HD Vest: Learning from Experience — Benefits Trump Concerns When Tax Professionals Offer Financial Services

In an August 2014 survey conducted by the research unit of SourceMedia, publisher of Accounting Today, accountants and tax professionals who have added a financial services offering to their business said that they not only increased profitability, but that a large majority of their tax service clients were also financial services clients. By offering these extended services, they’ve improved customer loyalty and satisfaction and increased the value of their business. Tax professionals offering financial services have gained notable benefits that outweigh any potential concerns, according t...
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Biz2Credit: Four Tips for Advising Clients Who Want to Start a Business

Among the many factors potential business owners should consider when deciding whether to start a business are tax implications. As your clients' tax expert, it's important you know the fundamentals of business structures and different ways to secure financing. Knowing how to advise your clients in these matters allows you to expand your services and enhance your client relationships. Here are four tips to help you guide aspiring entrepreneurs. #1 – Help clients create a business plan The professional plan should map out various subjects including: What the business is Who o...
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BluePay: Top Four Reasons to Accept Credit Cards in Your Practice

Accepting credit cards makes doing business easier for both you and your clients. While implementing a solution to accept credit card payments at your practice may seem overwhelming, consider these benefits: Easier, faster collections. Sending invoices and waiting for paper checks can take several weeks. Accepting credit cards eliminates that delay. Improved cash flow. When your clients can pay with their credit cards, you receive payment immediately and your business has improved cash flow. Valuable documentation. Keeping track of credit card activity is easy because electronic reco...
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HD Vest: Tax Alpha Video Playlist and Why HD Vest?

Our 30-year history of working with CPAs and tax professionals who decided to reinvent their practices by adding financial services to their client offering has resulted in a one-of-kind business model built around the services, training and support needed to be successful in your new endeavor. In support of HD Vest Advisors in 2014, we evolved a big idea into a firm strategy called “Reinventing Growth Strategies.” This plan and approach has been transformational in providing all our Advisors with the concept and proven value of bringing a repeatable client experience to life and allowing them...
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Webiquity: Local Business Advertising on the Internet

Local Business Advertising on the Internet  Is the idea that small businesses should have a strong online presence just a trend, or is there something more to it? Webiquity created this infographic to show just how important it is for small business owners to be tapped into all things internet. The combination of your company website, social media, review websites and your site’s mobile responsiveness determines the level of success that any given business will have. This infographic answers many questions you might have about the impact having an online presence can have on your prac...
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Webiquity: Why You Need a Mobile Website Now

Google recently updated their ranking criteria algorithm in strong support of mobile-friendly websites, making it more difficult for non-optimized sites to be found and clicked on mobile devices. Changes like these prove that mobile isn’t just a trend. If search result placements, website traffic and user satisfaction are concerns for your digital presence, it might be time for your site to go mobile, too. Here are just five reasons you need a mobile site sooner rather than later. More than 50 percent of all searches are made on a mobile device Google recently announced that more s...
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