Relevant 2018 Tax Changes That May Affect You
by Nikki Robert Singleton
Our nation is constantly changing. Whether through political pull, popular issue topics or governmental law, you know as well as the rest of us that there is really not very much we can do about these things as individuals, but we often feel the effects that these changes have on us. Whether you are a business owner or just a regular “Joe Schmoe”, taxes are something that we all have to deal with. It’s just the way it is. As it has often been said, “The only two certainties in life are death and taxes”. So, how are the new tax laws going to affect you? Are they going to be as painful as ever, or are they going to help you with your quality of living? We’re here to explain to you five of the changes that Donald Trump has set forth, by law, during his past two years in office.
The Trump administration has come together to make several changes to our tax laws and they have had a heavy impact on America and will continue to do so. Taxes have now become more simplified (it that’s even a real thing) where most Americans will now pay less, which is obviously not bad. When we initially hear some of these changes, they may seem shocking and absurd; however, when you listen to how they are dissected, you’ll begin to understand the reasoning behind these new laws.
You can no longer write off meals and entertainment. This sounds… really horrible. People love food and they surely enjoy their pleasures so being able to get money back on these things is like a God-send. However, you can no longer write these things off. Unless (of course there are always ways around these things), you show some sort of business proposal during the luncheon/dinner to prove that your meal, which is often classified as a type of entertainment, was relatable to work. Our tip, keep those receipts and talk about business more often. You can still use a portion of these bills as write offs.
Tax exemptions have become more simplified. Taxes are confusing, everyone has to deal with them but no one truly understands them in and out. So this part of the new tax bracket is a good thing. Personal exemptions, which are fairly common, have pretty much been wiped out. This pretty much just means, in the past, an American could claim one personal exemption for, not only themselves, but for their spouse and each additional dependent. Lawmakers have now combined these personal exemptions with standard deductions. So next time you start complaining about your standard deductions, take that into consideration.
Child tax credits have nearly doubled, a positive for all of the people still wondering why personal exemptions have disappeared. Now, you can double your money with each dependent that you have, just by truly keeping track of all of your expenditures.
One of the easiest ways to write off some of your income is through charitable donations, and we love it that way. However, and we love this one, the increase on these contributions have gone up as well, making them as popular as ever! Deductions were at a whopping 50% in 2017 and are now at 60%, a 10% increase.
Our personal favorite new tax law is the “recall” on Obamacare tax laws, which pretty much just state that if you don’t have health insurance, you pay a tax for that, as well. No longer do people who cannot afford health insurance have to pay a penalty for that. We never truly understood this anyway, due to the fact that if someone can’t afford something such as care for their own health, how could you possibly penalize them for it?
So there you have it. Taxes are simpler than ever and your return is higher than ever. We understand that governments are not simply black and white, we get that there are loopholes, cheats and dirty people who will take advantage - especially the people on the inside. However, we are here to help you keep as much of your money as possible… after all, you were the one who worked for that money in the first place! Now you can take a breather knowing that you have more knowledge on the certainties in life and can actually benefit from them!