Tag Archives: Rodefer Moss

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Extol Events Presents: Where There’s A Will, There’s A Way

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Make It Count with Rodefer Moss & Co, PLLC | Are You Ready for an IRS Audit?

By Doug York, CPA & Partner, Rodefer Moss & Co, PLLC

If being selected for an IRS audit were a game show, it’d be called the Wheel of Misfortune.

Though the IRS in 2016 audited about one million individual tax returns, it represented only about 0.7% of all returns filed. That’s a 16% drop from a year earlier and means there was about a one in 140 chance that when the IRS wheel spun its audit wheel it landed on your name. That’s down from about one in 120 returns audited in 2015.

Corporate audits in 2016 fell to 1.1 percent from 1.3 percent a year earlier. Overall, it was the sixth straight year the number of audits declined.

Doug York CPA/Partner Rodefer Moss & Co, PLLC

Doug York
CPA/Partner
Rodefer Moss & Co, PLLC

Budget reductions at the IRS are blamed for reduced enforcement. Critics contend that years of inadequate IRS appropriates are leading to the decline in audits and thus perhaps emboldening tax cheats.

IRS critics contend that the IRS had become politicized; for example, the much-publicized IRS targeting of conservative organizations. After an investigation, Assistant Attorney General Peter Kadzik, in a letter to Congress saying that no charges would be filed against anyone involved in the scandal, explaining that what was discovered was, “substantial evidence of mismanagement, poor judgment and institutional inertia leading to the belief by many tax-exempt applicants that the IRS targeted them based on their political viewpoints. But poor management is not a crime.”

While poor management may not be a crime, it’s not a confidence-builder, either.

Audits tend to be dollar-figure driven. The higher an individual’s income, the greater the possibility of an audit. Income levels of more than $1 million a year saw audit possibilities approach 6%, the Wall Street Journal reported on March 26, 2017. Incomes above $200,000 saw a 1.7% chance of being audited. Under $200,000 the figure declined to 0.6%.

If your income is above $10 million, there’s about a one-in-three chance you’ll be subject to an audit.

The more complicated a person’s tax return, the more it raises the likelihood of an audit. As a person’s income increases their various financial instruments, shelters, investments, deductions, and other factors tend to become more complex – and more attractive to IRS auditors.

Suspicion of unreported income; questionable deductions; foreign income or accounts; appearance of unreported income; and other maybe-this-doesn’t-pass-the-smell-test factors bring the IRS bloodhounds sniffing at a person’s income paper trail.

Corporations stand a much higher chance of being audited, and again, the higher the income, the higher the probability of an audit because of the amount of money involved. Also, as with high-income individual taxpayers, corporate tax returns tend to be very complicated, which again leads to greater scrutiny.

Regardless of the numerical factors impacting the number of IRS audits, everyone – individuals and corporations – should conduct their affairs is if tomorrow they’ll receive notice of an audit.

Obeying financial laws and keeping good records for your own protection is common sense. That doesn’t mean regardless of your tax position that you and the IRS are going to agree on everything either through an audit or because your tax return was flagged for some reason.

The IRS doesn’t always prevail in tax disputes. And it’s possible, the faces behind the acronym being human, for IRS employees to make mistakes. Thus, keeping good records and not becoming overly “creative” in your financial reporting guard against IRS problems.

Another reason to always be audit-ready is that when the IRS Wheel of Misfortune spins, it will land on someone’s name. Betting it won’t be you is a gamble.

Rodefer Moss is a three-state accounting firm with offices in New Albany, Corydon, and Georgetown, Ind., Louisville, Ky., and four offices across Tennessee. The firm’s website is www.rodefermoss.com.

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Make It Count with Rodefer Moss & Co., PLLC | Real Estate Accounting Solutions: Alleviating Accounting Headaches for Commercial Property Management

By Leah Driver, CPA Manager, Rodefer Moss & Co, PLLC

Many commercial property managers and owners spend a great deal of their time out of the office visiting properties.  This can make it difficult to keep up with their accounting and record keeping. While at a property they may need access to “real time” financial data.  Larger companies may have an employee handling these responsibilities in the office.  However, this doesn’t always alleviate the problem.  The employee may be behind in their bookkeeping and accounting responsibilities due to other office duties, or simply out of the office. Wouldn’t it be nice to have an accounting department without having to hire or retain employees and have your real-time financial data accessible 24/7? Real Estate Accounting Solutions (REAS) can do just that and much more!  REAS is a full service outsourced property management solution.  REAS is an affiliate of Rodefer Moss & Co, PLLC, one of the largest CPA firms in the region with over 50 years of business in the Southern Indiana and Louisville area.

REAS is a cloud-based solution with web portals for investors and owners, allowing real-time access to your property management data from any location 24 hours a day.  REAS provides accounting and organization tools for the property management process and is a great tool for any group, regardless of size.

Key Features

Property management professionals can outsource their day to day accounting and focus on what they do best.  Here some, but not all, of the great features and capabilities of REAS.

  • Financial Reporting, Bank Reconciliations
  • Accounting of Current & Future Leases
  • CAM Reconciliation
  • Rent Roll
  • Accounts Payable
  • Accounts Receivable

Tailored to your Needs

This software solution accompanied by our CPA’s with real estate accounting expertise brings a full outsourced solution to property management, lease management, vendor management and accounting service.

Property Type

Does your property fit the model of a REAS candidate?  There are many property types we can customize this feature to work with.  The following list includes examples of REAS candidates.

  • Apartment Complexes
  • Shopping Centers
  • Warehouses
  • Office Buildings
  • Commercial Buildings
  • Industrial Properties

Pricing

Pricing for REAS is based on rental revenues and their associated management fees.  The pricing is beneficial to both large and small developments.  As properties experience high tenant occupancies and profitable rental rates, REAS fees remain an incremental cost.  Likewise, pricing for this outsourced tool is great for smaller companies and start-ups, as the fees are percentage-based rather than flat fee.  Fees for this accounting solution are highly competitive for larger companies with existing accounting functions, as well as in smaller companies who simply cannot afford to hire internal accounting staff. Let REAS help you Increase accuracy, efficiency, and cost savings with “real-time” 24/7 access to your financial data from wherever you happen to be when you need it!

For More information on REAS or Rodefer Moss, please contact us.

Matt Brown, CPA  Partner               812-981-3436 mbrown@rodefermoss.com

Leah Driver, CPA Manager               812-981-3442 ldriver@rodefermoss.com

Website: www.REASaccounting.com

 

 

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Make It Count with Rodefer Moss & Co., PLLC | IRAs are a taxing decision

By Doug York, CPA & Partner, Rodefer Moss & Co, PLLC

When to contribute to your 2016 Individual Retirement Accounts is a taxing and spending decision. So, potentially, is determining how much to contribute. The deadline is April 18 for tax year 2016 IRA contributions. That’s three days beyond the normal April 15 tax day deadline because of Emancipation Day, a holiday in Washington, D.C.

Doug York CPA/Partner Rodefer Moss & Co, PLLC

Doug York
CPA/Partner
Rodefer Moss & Co, PLLC

To take advantage of growth in an IRA, it’s usually better to make your contributions as early in the tax year as possible.

But this isn’t always financially feasible, which makes the deadline reaching into the following year a benefit for retirement savings. How much should you contribute? Given the challenges of retirement, the need for consistent income, and a general desire to maintain a similar standard of living once you stop working, you will probably want to contribute as much as you can up to the allowable limit.

Time Magazine in March 2016, in an article on retirement planning, said that even as lifespans lengthen, some 56 percent of Americans have less than $10,000 in retirement savings. Only 18 percent had put away more than $200,000.

An IRA enables you to pay yourself during your growth and peak earning years so that you’ll be able to pay yourself as you ratchet back your work schedule or retire altogether. How much you contribute today will have direct bearing on your quality of life later.

 IRA contribution limits for tax year 2016 are $5,500 for taxpayers up to age 50, and $6,500 for taxpayers age 50 or older.

As Americans typically don’t save enough for retirement, the extra $1,000 gives people of greater age an opportunity to make up lost savings ground. The limit starts to phase out if your income is over $99,000 married or $62,000 single. Also you may not be able to contribute if you or your spouse has a 401(k) or other retirement plan.

Tax consequences come into play if you make IRA contributions above the allowable limits.

There is a six percent tax on IRA contributions that exceed the contribution limits. For example, if you’re older than 50 and put $7,500 in your IRA for 2016, you’ll be taxed $60 every year the extra contribution remains in your IRA.

IRA contribution limits don’t apply to rollover IRAs (putting your IRA money into another IRA plan). The rollover rules are expanded for military reservists called to active duty by allowing them up to two years to roll over a distribution.

Roth IRA contributions, as opposed to traditional IRAs, are made with money on which you’ve already paid taxes, making it tax-free when withdrawn. If you have both a Roth IRA and a traditional IRA, you are restricted to the same total $5,500 contribution limit as if you only had a traditional IRA. However, the phase-out doesn’t start until $184,000 for married couples and $118,000 if you’re single.

 When it comes to withdrawing IRA funds, another deadline exists.

If you turned 70½ in 2016, you have until April 18, 2017, to take your required minimum distribution. This is true for each IRA in which you participate. The IRS provides a worksheet on how to figure your minimum required distribution.

There’s a hefty 50 percent excise tax on all or part of any required minimum distribution you fail to withdraw from your IRA. Again, this doesn’t apply to a Roth IRA. IRA owners who’ve reached required minimum distribution age can avoid tax on up to $100,000 by electing to transfer funds to a charity. This benefit was made permanent last year.

 There are 13 days (maybe less by the time you read this) left in which to make these decisions, if you haven’t already.

As with IRAs and so many other financial instruments, there can be nuances atop nuances. Talk to your accountant or financial planner to think through the best strategy for your present and future.

 Rodefer Moss is a three-state accounting firm with offices in New Albany, Corydon, and Georgetown, Ind., Louisville, Ky., and four offices across Tennessee. The firm’s website is www.rodefermoss.com.

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Rodefer Moss: A Different Kind of CPA Firm

The team at Rodefer Moss listens better, tries harder and cares more.

In 2016, Rodefer Moss, the Southern Indiana accounting and business advisory firm, was a finalist for GLI’s Inc.credible Awards in the Innovation & Creativity category – despite the fact that innovation and creativity are not normally attributes associated with accounting firms. Operating under the strict limitations of their profession, accounting firms are usually praised for things like efficiency, thoroughness, accuracy, knowledge and experience.

“We were the first CPA firm ever nominated for this award, in 16 years,” said Rodefer Moss President Doug York. “for us to be recognized in the marketplace for being innovative and creative, I think that explains just about everything you need to know about us.”

As a company that has operated in Southern Indiana for nearly 50 years, Rodefer Moss has developed a special relationship with the community. It understands – especially – the challenges of small, family-owned businesses that are looking for more than just tax preparation from an accounting firm.

“The nature of the Southern Indiana business environment is mostly small and family-owned,” York said. “They have different situations than larger businesses, different problems and challenges. We’ve worked with those kinds of companies. We understand them.”

Strategic analysis is a critical component of the Rodefer Moss approach to its services. “If you just want us to file your tax returns,” said York, “where you give us the numbers and let us fill in all the blanks, we’re probably not the firm for you.”

Hoosier History 

Melhiser Endres, CPAs, P.C. was formed in 1969 by local accountants Norman Melhiser and Edward Endres. In 1980, Tom Tucker joined the firm as partner. The company was then named Melhiser Endres Tucker CPAs, P.C. Doug York became President in 2004.

In 2008, the firm merged with Rodefer Moss & Co, PLLC, a Tennessee-based regional accounting and consulting firm. Headquartered in Knoxville, the firm also has offices in Nashville, Greeneville and Kingsport, Tenn. The Rodefer Moss name was retained for the entire entity, and York was named president then, too.

Today, Rodefer Moss consists of eight offices based throughout Indiana, Kentucky and Tennessee, with nearly 150 employees. In Indiana, the firm has offices in New Albany, Georgetown and Corydon. There are 50 employees locally, including 25 CPAs, serving more than 4,000 clients in the Southern Indiana and Louisville markets.

Philanthropy and Office Environment 

Rodefer Moss considers philanthropy one of the key hallmarks of their mission statement. They are committed to serving the communities in which they live and work.

They believe that community service is integral to sustaining a community and business. By immerging themselves in service, they ensure the growth of the community and assist those in need. Their commitment to community service is focused on education, health and economic growth. They believe economic growth is promoted by supporting and participating in the community.

Joe Brown, a partner in the New Albany office, has more than demonstrated the firm’s commitment to community service, and his works have inspired others in the firm to follow in his footsteps. Joe was recently honored with the Salvation Army of Southern Indiana’s Lifetime Achievement Award, as well as the Indiana CPA Society’s highest award for service to the community.

“Everyone with Rodefer Moss has long admired Joe for the time, effort, and even sacrifice, he’s made over the years to uplift people and organizations in our community,” said York. “Joe is a great example of a top-flight professional accountant and community builder.”

In 2015, the firm was named one of Louisville Business First’s “Best Places to Work” and their philanthropic efforts were acknowledged by being named as one of the Top Ten Small Business finalists for the past two years by the publication.

Rodefer Moss also has implemented a volunteer program that encourages their team members to engage and volunteer for community organizations. They earn points depending on their amount of time or involvement, and the employees who have met their goals are rewarded. They also offer their team members time away from the office to participate in such activities.

Traditional Services 

• Assurance • Consulting • Estate & Trust

• Business Valuation • Employee Benefit Plans • Tax Planning & Compliance

Innovative Services 

In addition to traditional accounting firm services, such as assurance and tax compliance services, Rodefer Moss offers a full suite of consulting services through several affiliates. The overwhelming desire to serve their clients better and exceed their expectations is a driving force throughout this firm.

“That’s what makes us different,” said York. “We take the time and effort to learn about you, your business and your needs, and we do our best to address all of those needs.”

As Rodefer Moss is led by an entrepreneurial spirit, they recognized areas where they saw both their clients, and the general marketplace, that were underserved.

To better serve the business community, they created firm affiliates to address those issues:

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Epayroll Resource Group (www.epayrollrg.com): Many of their clients expressed frustration with their payroll providers. Specifically, issues ranged from price to being “just a number” to their payroll providers. Epayroll addresses all of these issues. Prices are extremely competitive, and more often than not, are lower than pricing of national providers. Epayroll clients are each assigned their own payroll specialist, which builds a relationship, improves communication and maintains continuity. Because of this relationship, Epayroll clients definitely aren’t just a number!

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Real Estate Accounting Solutions  (www.REASAccounting.com): Many commercial property management clients were spreading themselves too thin and trying to do it all. Either they are trying to do it all themselves, or trying to plug round pegs in square holes with the staff they had, but there was not an affordable solution for them, so it seemed as though they were stuck. Enter Real Estate Accounting Solutions (REAS). REAS takes the accounting and administrative burden off the backs of property managers and frees them to work “in” their business, rather than “on” it.

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The Capsa Group (www.thecapsagroup.com): The financial crisis and the ensuing focus on financial institutions have put these institutions under more regulatory and compliance pressure than at any time in U.S. history. Local community banks and credit unions typically lack the internal resources to address these issues internally, and would oftentimes be forced to outsource these services to multiple vendors. Acquiring these important services from multiple vendors is a struggle on its own. By addressing these issues for financial institutions, they can now focus on their core business – which is serving their own clients – and leave the regulatory and compliance headaches to the experienced team at The Capsa Group.

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Rodefer Moss Consulting (www.rodefermossconsulting.com) is a full service forensic and valuation firm specializing in quality intangible asset valuation solutions, litigation support and investigative accounting services. Clients typically require Business Valuation services, where a client may be involved in a merger or acquisition, planning to take the company public, or planning a stock transfer, and require an accurate valuation of the business involved; Litigation Support, where the legal profession needs support during litigation with financial ramifications, where the issues range from shareholder dissension to matrimonial matters; or Investigative Accounting, which is often used in criminal investigations and legal proceedings, where the Rodefer Moss Consulting team provides credible, supportable, objective and independent analysis for law firms.

Depth of Expertise 

Rodefer Moss has developed alliances and network relationships to meet the ever-expanding needs of their clients. As such, they are an Independent Member of the BDO USA Alliance of Accounting and Consulting Firms. Through the Alliance, they have direct access to the same technical resources, industry specialists, and world-wide knowledge base utilized by BDO USA, LLP, one of the largest national accounting firms.

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For more information about Rodefer Moss, visit www.rodefermoss.com. The firm’s four local offices are located at:

301 E. Elm Street, New Albany | 812.945.5236

119 E. Beaver Street, Corydon | 812.738.3777

1074 Copperfield Drive, Georgetown | 812. 951.2708

2225 Lexington Road, Louisville | 502.719.1750

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Our Advertising Partners in the News

German American Bank Announces $20,000 Gift to Community Montessori

German American Bank has given a donation of $20,000 to support Community Montessori Public Charter’s expansion project, “Casa dei Curiosity,” to construct a building addition. The building will allow the school to host large group presentations in a facility designed for this purpose, including theater productions, parent and community education events and other large group gatherings for the school.

Community members interested in the project can visit www.shiningminds.com/donate to view a short video about the project or to give a financial contribution to support this innovative addition. Interested individuals or organizations can also contact Melissa Weissinger, expansion development coordinator, at mweissinger@shiningminds.com or 812.948.1000 ext. 1230.

Axiom’s Vaughan Scott Recognized for Outstanding Achievement

Vaughan Scott of Axiom Financial Strategies Group of Wells Fargo Advisors in New Albany has been awarded the FFI GEN (Global Educational Network) Advanced Certificate in Family Business Advising (ACFBA) by the Family Firm Institute. The certificate is presented to individuals who have achieved comprehensive professional knowledge and gained significant expertise that can be used as value to family business owners and family wealth clients.

“Through completion of the certificate program, Vaughan has gained a deeper understanding of the needs of family-owned enterprises and the many roles family business and non-family members play, “ said Judy Green, president of the Family Firm Institute. Participants have access to cutting edge information and resources for exploring the core disciplines — behavioral science, finance, law and management science — and steps for forming collaborative teams. FFI provides multidisciplinary educational programs to advance family enterprises worldwide by enabling collaboration between family enterprise practitioners and academics, creating a global network of professionals.

Lisa Newbanks of  Rodefer Moss Promotednewbanks

Rodefer Moss & Co, PLLC promoted Lisa Newbanks to principal on Jan. 1. Lisa works in the firm’s New Albany and Louisville offices, and was previously a senior manager in the firm’s audit practice.

“What clients experience when they work with Lisa is a personification of Rodefer Moss’ service philosophy of listening better, trying harder, and caring more,” said Doug York, Rodefer Moss president. “Lisa’s promotion to principal is well-earned, and we congratulate her on what she has accomplished.”

Newbanks earned her Bachelor of Science degree in accounting from Indiana University Southeast. A professional accountant for 17 years, she specializes in audits of not-for-profit organizations, employee benefit plans, Housing and Urban Development (HUD) projects, governmental entities, and small businesses.

Licensed to practice as a CPA in Kentucky and Indiana, Newbanks is a member of the Indiana CPA Society; the Kentucky Society of the Certified Public Accountants, the AICPA, and currently serves as a committee member of the INCPAS Peer Review Program. She is also active with Junior Achievement.

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It’s Tax Time, Southern Indiana

Most People who’ve been filing income taxes, and maybe also business taxes, for years know the drill: gather all your records, keep your receipts and use an experienced professional tax preparer.

Beyond that, though, what are some items that frequently slip through the cracks? Nicole York, senior manager at Rodefer Moss & Co., took time to share her expertise. 

By Steve Kaufman

EXTOL: What are the things your clients need to bring to their tax preparation visit with you?

NICOLE YORK: First, any income statements: a W-2 for an employee, a K-1 for someone in an S-Corp or partnership, 1099s for sole proprietors and independent contractors. Then, all reports regarding mortgage interest paid, real estate taxes, property taxes (on cars, boats, motorcycles, campers) – it’s called “excise tax” in Indiana, “advalorem tax” in Kentucky. In short, I always tell my clients, “Include anything you get in the mail that says ‘Important Tax Documents Enclosed.’ ”

EXTOL: What about business expenses?

YORK: Have a list of all ordinary and necessary business expenses that might be deductible – anything they’ve had to pay to keep themselves in business.

EXTOL: What might change from year to year?

YORK: The birth of a child. A job change or relocation. Sale or purchase of a home, investments or other large assets. Distributions from a retirement plan. Significant medical issues. It could be something as simple as putting a child in daycare. We also recommend that they show us a couple of prior year tax returns, so we can see what’s been normal in the past.

EXTOL: Is it too late to make any significant changes to one’s 2016 tax situation?

YORK: Not at all. Many people don’t know theystill have time, even after the prior tax year ends, to take steps to mitigate their taxes for that year. You can still put $5,500 into your IRA ($6,500 if you’re over 50) until April 15 to count against last year’s taxes, assuming you meet the eligibility requirements. Self-employed individuals can still set up retirement plans until April 15. With a SEP (Simplified Employee Pension), you can put in about 25 percent of your net earnings. In fact, you even have until Oct. 15 to do that if you need to file for an extension on your taxes. And you still have time to max out a Health Savings Account (HSA) if you have one – up to $3,350 for a single taxpayer, $6,750 for a family, with an option for an additional $1,000 catch-up contribution if you’re over 55.

EXTOL: A Health Savings Account? What is that?

YORK: It’s a set-aside fund to pay for qualified medical expenses that exceed your health insurance plan’s deductibles.

EXTOL: Can anyone set one up?

YORK: No. First, you need to have a high-deductible health insurance plan. The government defines that, for 2016, as having deductibles of at least $1,300 for an individual, $2,600 for a family. In addition, the total out-of-pocket expense can’t exceed $6,550 for an individual, $13,100 for a family.

EXTOL: Do many people have that?

YORK: More and more, probably. It’s one way to keep premiums down, whether for health insurance coverage you’re required to carry under the Affordable Care Act or for health insurance coverage you’re getting through your employer.

EXTOL: How do you set up an HSA?

YORK: If it’s an employee benefit, your employer sets it up and withholds the contributions from your paycheck.

EXTOL: Is it too late to set one up now for your 2016 taxes?

YORK: It is. Those plans have to be set up before year-end. If you already have one, though, the deductible contributions can still be made until April 15. However, any HSA contributions made in 2017 for the tax year 2016 have to be made by the individual, such as a check deposited directly into the account. Just tell your bank that those are “prior year contributions.” Any contributions that come from the employer’s withholding on your paycheck will only be credited for the year in which they’re withheld.

EXTOL: We live in a two-state, multi-county community. It must get complicated.

YORK: Yes. For instance, a lot of Indiana residents working in Louisville have Louisville tax withheld from their paychecks. Indiana allows for a tax credit for those payments. One thing we find with new clients is that they’re not taking that credit, especially if they’d been preparing their own returns, or if the returns were done by a tax preparer unfamiliar with Indiana tax law.

EXTOL: Does that apply to state withholdings, as well?

YORK: No, Kentucky and Indiana are reciprocal states. So, if an Indiana resident is working in Kentucky, the employer withholds Indiana state income tax. And, of course, vice-versa.

EXTOL: Indiana residents do pay county income tax,
too, don’t they?

YORK: Yes, based on the county they lived in as of January 1 of the taxable year. It’s a flat tax filed with their Indiana state return. It’s not a separate metro return, like in Louisville/Jefferson County.

EXTOL: And the county tax rates are all the same?

YORK: Not at all. Around here, it’s 1 percent in Harrison County, 1.15 percent in Floyd County and 2 percent in Clark County. Something to think about if someone is planning to move this year.

EXTOL: Does anything still surprise you?

YORK: I’m still shocked that people enter into large transactions – selling a house, selling land, selling large investments – without first consulting their tax preparer about all the tax consequences. After the fact, there’s not always much we can do to mitigate the tax effects.

EXTOL: Any particular examples?

YORK: Social Security recipients are often shocked when a large transaction puts them over an income level and suddenly makes 85 percent of their Social Security income taxable. We get a lot of timber sales in Southern Indiana, where someone will have a logger come in and cut down standing timber on their property. Then they sell it and – oops – it raises their taxable income.

EXTOL: “Oops” sounds bad.

YORK: Nobody likes “oops,” especially when it comes to taxes.

About Nicole York

Nicole York is a CPA and a senior manager of the firm Rodefer Moss & Co. She works out of the Corydon office. “If you haven’t seen a tax preparer yet, there’s still time,” she said. “If you’re seeing a new preparer, you should pull together at least one prior year tax return (two is better), and write down a list of questions you have. If you’re a small-business owner, summarize all of your income and expenses for the year. Having these items handy before we meet will expedite the preparation process.”

For more information on Rodefer Moss, go to roderfermoss.com/indiana.html

THE FIRM’S THREE INDIANA LOCATIONS ARE AT:

301 E. Elm St., New Albany | 812.945.5236 119

E. Beaver St., Corydon | 812.738.3777

1074 Copperfield Dr., Georgetown | 812.951.2708

Douglas York, CPA, President

Obamacare reporting requirements get extension, but haven’t changed

By Doug York, CPA, President of Rodefer Moss

The size and complexity of the Affordable Care Act’s (Obamacare) rules have been among its biggest problems since former President Barack Obama first put pen to paper to sign it into law. The situation becomes even more complicated around tax time. Employers must provide information both to employees and the IRS to avoid having to pay a penalty.

With Washington’s political wrangling fully underway over the future off Obamacare, there may be a belief among some that the law is in limbo and that we’re in a wait-and-see mode in terms of compliance.

No. Obamacare has not changed and neither have its requirements.

The resulting administrative burden is such that an extension has been given to employers to provide to employees IRS forms necessary to comply with the law. The IRS’s original deadline of Jan. 31, 2017 has been extended to March 2, 2017, for employers to have these forms in employees’ hands.

Additionally, if an employer errs, but nevertheless demonstrates “good faith” in their efforts, they can self-correct their issue without Uncle Sam’s heavy hand handing out penalties.

Employers with at least 50 full-time employees are required to provide a baseline, law-approved set of essential health benefits (EHB) to employees affected by the law’s definitions of full-time employees or equivalent employees. This information must be presented to Employees on IRS form 1095 –C. This ensures employees (as well as the IRS) understand what, and how, they’re affected. Perhaps most importantly to the IRS the form reveals whether it’s owed money in penalties.

IRS Forms 1095-B 1095-C are the object of the extension. The IRS explains on its website what the forms accomplish:

  • Form 1095-B, Health Coverage, provides you with information about your health care coverage if you, your spouse or your dependents enrolled in coverage through an insurance provider or self-insured employer last year.”

Employers received no extension in the timing to submit their 1094 and 1095 forms to demonstrate Obamacare-related compliance information (separate from the IRS forms listed above) to the IRS. These deadlines are Feb. 28 for those filing via paper, March 31 for those filing electronically.

The extension to March, 2, 2017 conceivably will result in a delay in tax returns if employees wait to have the forms in their possession before filing their taxes; however, taxpayers can use other documentation, such as insurance coverage and proof of payment, to show their status under Obamacare’s requirements.

An employer who files the wrong forms, or files forms with errors or inaccuracies, won’t be penalized by the IRS if the employer can demonstrate a “good faith” effort was made to abide by the law.

Obamacare may be changing, but the safest thing to do is not to assume and proceed as if nothing has changed in terms of reporting requirements. Because indeed, nothing has, changed.

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PRESS RELEASE | Rodefer Moss promotes Newbanks to Principal

 

(December 27, 2016) – Rodefer Moss & Co, PLLC has promoted Lisa Newbanks to Principal, effective January 1, 2017. Lisa works in the firm’s New Albany, Ind., and Louisville, Ky., offices, and was previously a Senior Manager in the firm’s audit practice.

“What clients experience when they work with Lisa is a personification of Rodefer Moss’ service philosophy of listening better, trying harder, and caring more,” said Doug York, Rodefer Moss president. “Lisa’s promotion to Principal is well-earned, and we congratulate her on what she has accomplished.”

Newbanks earned her Bachelor of Science degree in accounting from Indiana University Southeast. A professional accountant for 17 years, she specializes in audits of not-for-profit organizations, employee benefit plans, Housing and Urban Development (HUD) projects, governmental entities, and small businesses.

Licensed to practice as a CPA in Kentucky and Indiana, Newbanks is a member of the Indiana CPA Society; the Kentucky Society of the Certified Public Accountants, the AICPA, and currently serves as a committee member of the INCPAS Peer Review Program. She is also active with Junior Achievement.

Rodefer Moss is a three-state accounting and business advisory firm with eight offices In Indiana, Kentucky, and Tennessee. Learn more about Rodefer Moss at www.rodefermoss.com.

Contact Information:

Kim Naville

Marketing Coordinator

812-945-5236

knaville@rodefermoss.com

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Make It Count with Rodefer Moss & Co., PLLC | Use the New Year to review Internal Controls

By Douglas York, CPA, President Rodefer Moss & Co, PLLC

Douglas York, CPA, President

Douglas York, CPA, President

Even when you think you have internal controls that’ll uncover a nickel that falls under a desk, it’s important to revisit them – and their effectiveness – periodically.  It’s remarkable how many business owners or chief financial officers operate within a certainty that their accounting safeguards are keeping them safe, but are failing.

Effective internal controls are as important for small businesses as major corporations because major corporations have extensive and expensive accounting systems and procedures to catch anything out of the ordinary. Except, not, as the examples below illustrate. Please note the positions and responsibilities of the individuals who either actually, or allegedly, committed the fraud:

 “Daniel Nathan West, 50, of Duluth, Georgia, was previously employed as the treasurer and chief financial officer for Airis International Holdings. In this role, he was to manage Airis finances during construction projects, control the company’s monetary assets, administer payments and payroll, among other things.”

 Thomas Hauk, 42, pleaded guilty to five counts of bank fraud, two counts of wire fraud, five counts of counterfeit securities and four counts of money laundering. Hauk worked as accountant at Assured Management Company from approximately 2005 to July 2015.”

 “Gary Tiffany, 32, was arrested on Monday and charged in a criminal complaint filed in a federal court in Boston with bank fraud, wire fraud and engaging in illegal monetary transactions, prosecutors said…According the complaint, from April 2011 through November 2015, Tiffany wired funds from the company’s accounts to his own and forged checks in order to embezzle $3.38 million.”

The internal controls imperative exists regardless of the size of your business or the length of time employees have been working for the company. The companies listed above lost millions. On a relative scale, a small business can be hit just as hard, or harder, with the loss of far smaller sums.

Here are ways to conduct an internal controls checkup:

  1. If you’re internal controls policies are not in writing, write them down; if you have no written internal controls policies, you effectively have no internal controls.

Written policies give consistency to your office operations, eliminate confusion about proper procedures; benchmarks through which to ensure activities are being properly conducted; and protect the business if a claim is made by an employee that he or she didn’t understand what was expected of them or claims to have been told “this is how we do that” though it doesn’t conform with policy.

  1. Segregate duties. For example, ensure one person doesn’t have unilateral authority with respect to how money is received, disbursed, or accounted for. The more an individual believes themselves to be in sole possession of authority or accountability, the greater the temptation for its misuse.

For example, employees who prepare deposits should not make the deposits. Staff that reconciles accounts should not be solely responsible for preparing financial statements. Accounts payable and receivable functions should have more than one person involved in each process, with periodic random reviews conducted by senior management or the business owner. There should be separation of duties and redundancy of accountability in every aspect of receiving or disbursing money.

  1. Document every financial activity – including petty cash withdrawals.
  1. Use qualified professionals to find the gaps in your systems and strengthen the ones that are working well.

Among the resources available to help business improve internal controls are the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, and COSO – the Committee of Sponsorship Organizations of the Treadway Commission.

Good internal controls are like a continuous MRI exam: it enables you and your accounting team to know what’s going on internally to ensure your systems are healthy and able to react to problems or fraud before they become crisis.

The New Year is a great time for making a resolution about internal controls.

Rodefer Moss is a three-state accounting firm with offices in New Albany, Corydon, and Georgetown, Ind., Louisville, Ky., and four offices across Tennessee. The firm’s website is www.rodefermoss.com