Shandling & Landsman LLP shares some of the most common tax and accounting questions.

When do I have to take the first Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs) from my retirement accounts?

Once you reach age 70½, you are required by the IRS to take annual Required Minimum Distributions the April after you turn 70 ½.

I have more than one retirement account, do I have to take some money from each account?

You add all of your prior 12/31 balances together and take your RMD from only one of the accounts if you wish, see calculator section for information on determining your RMD.

What is the annual gifting exclusion?

The annual gifting exclusion for 2020 is $15,000 per person. If you give in excess of this amount to anyone you are required to file a gift tax return. Prior to giving excess funds you should consult us.

What is the charity deduction guideline for non-cash goods?

The Salvation Army Donation Value Guide helps you determine the approximate tax-deductible value of some of the more commonly donated items. It includes low and high estimates. You should choose a value within this range that reflects your item's relative age and quality.

What is the federal estate tax exclusion?

For 2020 the estate and gift tax exclusion has increased to $11.58 million per individual. This means that an individual can lease $11.2 million to theirs and pay no federal estate or gift tax. A married couple will be able to shield $22.4 million from federal estate and gift taxes.

What is the New York State estate tax exclusion?

States vary on this issue but one of the most common ones for us is NYS which if one dies between now and January 1, 2020 if $5,470,000. Individuals dying on or after January 1, 2020 the exemption is scheduled to equal the Federal.

What is the 2019 new tax ruling on charity?

Assuming an individual takes the itemized deduction, there is a up to 60% of AGI itemized charitable deduction.

What do we need to know when preparing our wills?

When you start to write a will, there are many important decisions to make and factors to take into account. You want to make careful and deliberate decisions with respect to protecting your assets for your heirs. See our Estate Planning Considerations guideline to help smooth the path between you and your estate/trust attorney.

Why do I have to pay taxes or file a tax return in more than one state?

Taxpayers who reside in one state and work in another may have their income taxed in both states and may need to file two state returns. This is also the case for taxpayers who move during the year – they may be a resident, part-year resident or nonresident in more than one state. In some cases, it is possible for a taxpayer to be a resident of more than one state. Many states will give a tax credit for taxes paid to another state, so it is important to prepare state tax returns in the right order to maximize the tax benefit.