Don’t Miss Out on These Small Business Write Offs!

Small Business Write Offs

It’s that time of year again—tax season! Small business owners everywhere are scrounging around for old receipts and frantically doing paperwork in preparation for tax day, all while keeping up with their regularly scheduled CEO duties. Amid all the craziness, it’s easy to miss out on some great write off opportunities. But anything that can save your business some money is worth the extra time and research.

Here are a couple small business deductions you don’t want to miss this year:

Just Getting Started

By simply starting your business, you can manage to dig up some tax deductions. There are a lot of expenses that go into starting a business: equipment, maintenance/repair, marketing, continuing education and utilities are all things that can be deducted because they’re capital expenses. Just make sure that your doors are officially open and you’re actually conducting business, and you could get up to $5,000 the first year you’re in business. Anything left over has to be deducted in equal amounts over the next 15 years.

Employee Expenses

It’s common in business to reimburse your employees for expenses: gas to a meeting, hotel expenses for business trips, other forms of transportation, baggage fees, meals for client lunches, etc. These reimbursements are all deductible. Just be sure to have an “accountable plan” in order to claim your deduction. An accountable plan shows that the expenses were indeed business-related. Along with the accountable plan, you should also keep the appropriate documentation of the transactions (receipts, for example) in case the IRS wants to check in. Employees must also validate their expenses within 60 days and give back any excess within 120 days.

Retirement Plans

For the self employed, Individual Retirement Plans (IRAs) can be the best write offs. If you don’t have any employees, you can set up an individual 401(k). In 2016, a person could contribute $18,000 as a 401(k) deferral.

And if you do have employees, try a Savings Incentive Match Plan for Employees (or SIMPLE). SIMPLE is an IRA-based strategy for small business owners making contributions to their small business employees’ retirement plans.

Retirement plans are a great tax deduction. Take advantage of the fact that the government is willing to help fund retirement.

Originally published by SmallBizClub

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Deborah Sweeney

Deborah Sweeney

Deborah Sweeney is the CEO of MyCorporation is a leader in online legal filing services for entrepreneurs and businesses, providing start-up bundles that include corporation and LLC formation, registered agent, DBA, and trademark & copyright filing services. MyCorporation does all the work, making the business formation and maintenance quick and painless, so business owners can focus on what they do best. Follow her on Twitter @deborahsweeney and @mycorporation.