Our annual autumn Tax Carnival is one fine celebration. I mean, really, what's more fun than taxes and all the traditional accoutrements of one of the world's best parties?
So without further ado, let's get to it!
Bier, beer and cerveza
Hey, I am in Texas. And thanks to the many immigrants who've helped shape the Lone Star State, we get to celebrate TaxtoberFest in many languages and with many types of beer.
Although a German banner wasn't one of the six flags that flew over my home state, the largest European ethnic group in Texas, particularly here in the Hill Country near Austin, are Germans. And as for our neighbor to the south, the Austrian emperor Maximilian ruled much of Mexico for a brief time, leaving a refreshing legacy via the country's darker cervezas.
So we raise a TaxtoberFest toast to our several international Tax Carnival contributors.
Our tax-paying neighbors to the north share a popular tax break: medical expenses. Tom notes that "there are a few rules to claiming medical expenses, but with a little planning there are ways to maximize your claim." He provides details in Claiming Medical Expenses, posted at The Canadian Finance Blog.
David de Souza sends us a post that was inspired by a U.S. reader
who is working in the U.K. The American's concern? How to Claim Back National Insurance, posted at
More international tax news comes from Julia Kingston, who says an IRS program with regard to foreign accounts could be a way to Get Out of Jail Free. Details are posted at Gray Matters.
And Lubna reminds us that "anything and everything can be taxed. Taxmen across the globe are getting more creative, when it comes to getting their share of the tax pie, more so, all in the guise of helping the tax payer. Will soda-tax really reduce obesity? One wonders ..." Lubna elaborates in Law Street in The Economic Times (Sept 2009), posted at Talking Tax.
All the fine polkas and other traditional tunes are a great accompaniment to the following stimulus-related TaxtoberFest bloggings.
PT gets us started with a look at Tax Incentives Found in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, posted at PT Money.
Other Tax Carnival contributors this month specifically examine some of those stimulus tax provisions.
The Tennessee Association of Realtors reports that over 50 percent of home sales in the first quarter of 2009 were because of first-time home buyers. Emily Moser presents A Look at the Real Estate Situation in Knoxville, posted at Construction Management Degrees.
Madison presents Energy Efficiency Tax Credits, posted at Tax Gab.
It's not part of the latest stimulus package, but earlier tax legislation made a key change to the tax treatment of some retirement plans.
Maybe you've heard about the upcoming Roth IRA rollover opportunity. Just to make sure you know, we have a couple of Tax Carnival contributions on this topic.
Pinyo tells us why the impending Roth conversion chance is a big deal and why you should know about it in 2010 Roth IRA Conversion Rules, What is The Big Deal? It's posted at Moolanomy Personal Finance.
And Mike Piper looks at a few circumstances in which it might not be a good idea to convert a traditional IRA to a Roth IRA, even if you're eligible. That info is in Should I Convert my Traditional IRA to a Roth IRA? It's posted at The Oblivious Investor.
It's important to be properly attired for Taxtoberfest. And it's even more important to make sure you are covered when it comes to tax tips and advice.
"Too often tax advice is simply thrown around without much thought as to its completeness," says Eric J. Nisall. He aims to remedy that by providing what is commonly left out when folks talk about six common tax deductions. Full disclosure is found in The Truth Behind Tax Deduction Advice, posted at Let's Blog Money.
With the recent market volatility, a lot of investors have been buying and selling. But that could cause some tax problems if you run afoul of the wash sale rule. Darwin looks at what this regulation means for your trades and how you can work around it in a compliant fashion in The "Wash Rule" in Investing and How it Applies to You. It's posted at Darwin's Finance.
Jeff Rose presents Don't Forget These Last Minute Tax Breaks for 2009, posted at Good Financial Cents.
Keep in mind, however, the words of Robert D Flach, who presents A TAX DEDUCTION IS ONLY WORTH WHAT IT IS WORTH, posted at THE WANDERING TAX PRO.
And when it comes to deductions, note well the words of Silicon Valley Blogger, who tells us Taking Income Tax Deductions? Track Tax Receipts When You Itemize. It's posted at The Digerati Life.
All those receipts naturally make us think about tax record keeping. FMF has some ideas on how long we all need to keep our actual tax returns in the appropriately titled How Long You Should Keep Tax Returns? It's posted at Free Money Finance.
Sausage, sauerkraut and spätzle
Some specific tax situations, some which are as elaborate as literal and tax sausage making, are the focus of this next group of tasty TaxtoberFest tidbits.
Super Saver offers info on Successfully Reduced Property Taxes, posted at My Wealth Builder.
David Gross offers an intriguing scenario: "I didn't pay my taxes, the IRS seized my bank account, adding interest and penalties, and I still came out ahead in the end. How does that work?" Find out in War Tax Resisters Penalty Fund, posted at The Picket Line.
Dan Meyer explains how QTIPs Remove Golddiggers from Your Heirs, posted at Tick Marks.
Dr. Jean Murray has some words of wisdom when it comes to that crucial area of Tax Evasion - Tax Avoidance. It's posted at About.com Jean's Business Law/Taxes U.S. Blog.
What about work, that place you'll have to return to after Taxtoberfest festivities, and taxes? We've got that covered, too.
Patrick has some tips on who should pay self-employment taxes, how self-employment taxes are determined, and when you should pay them in Self Employment Tax Guide, posted at Cash Money Life
Kim says "a big question that comes up a lot is what does one do at tax time if one has been laid off?" She answers that inquiry in How To File Taxes If Laid Off, posted at profitable.
Steve presents Small Business Tax Savings? The Ultimate Small Business Startup Guide Part 4, posted at MyWifeQuitHerJob.com.
One last bier for the tax road
Finally, we close out our TaxtoberFest 2009 celebration with information for all y'all who are already thinking about 2010 taxes. Jim presents 2010 Federal Income Tax Brackets, posted at Bargaineering (formerly known as Blueprint for Financial Prosperity).
Well, I hear the last oompah-pah strains in the distance, signaling the end of TaxtoberFest 2009. After we recover from the bier and brats, we'll be back next month, Nov. 2 to be precise, with the 59th Carnival of Taxes.
Be sure to submit your tax item for that collection by using our Blog Carnival submission form. Before doing so, please review our submission guidelines. You also can check out past Tax Carnivals.
Danke for being a part of the 2009 TaxtoberFest and Auf Wiedersehen until next time!