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Taxation of investments

It's nice to own stocks, bonds, and other investments. Nice, that is, until it's time to fill out your federal income tax return. At that point, you may be left scratching your head. Just how do you report your investments and how are they taxed? Is it ordinary income or... Read the full article

Understanding personal tax credits

Have you ever thought that you're paying too much income tax? You may be, if you're not claiming all of the tax credits for which you are eligible when you file your federal tax return. These credits may significantly reduce your tax liability. What is a tax credit? A... Read the full article

Tax planning for annuities

Favorable tax treatment is one of the main reasons for buying an annuity. But what exactly are the tax benefits? And are there any drawbacks? It's important to know the answers to these questions before deciding whether to purchase an annuity. Of course, any information... Read the full article

Income tax planning and 529 plans

The income tax benefits offered by 529 plans make these plans attractive to parents (and others) interested in saving for college. Qualified withdrawals from a 529 plan are tax free at the federal level, and some states also offer tax breaks to their residents. It's... Read the full article

Tax tips: long-term care insurance

Your chances of requiring some sort of long-term care increase as you age, and long-term care insurance (LTCI) can help you cover your long-term care expenses. Although tax issues are probably not foremost in your mind when you buy LTCI, it still pays to consider them. In... Read the full article

Tax planning tips: life insurance

Understanding the importance of life insurance is one thing. Understanding the tax rules is quite another. As insurance products have evolved and become more sophisticated, the line separating insurance vehicles from investment vehicles has grown blurry. To... Read the full article

Tax planning for income

The goal of income tax planning is to minimize your federal income tax liability. You can achieve this in different ways. Typically, though, you'd look at ways to reduce your taxable income, perhaps by deferring your income or shifting income to family members. You should... Read the full article

Education tax credits

It's tax time, and your kitchen table is littered with papers and forms. As if this isn't bad enough, you recently paid your child's college semester bill, and you don't know where you'll find the money to pay the taxes that you expect to owe. Well, you might finally catch... Read the full article