There is a saying about taxes that is so true: “You don’t know what you don’t know.” Taxes are so complex that you don’t even realize that you are missing something. For example, two of my clients have a “marriage made in heaven”: they are both Fedex pilots married to each other. I help this couple find all of their deductions, select which is best: joint status versus married filing separately, and find strategies to avoid the alternative minimum tax.
This couple lives in Alabama where they pay state income taxes. Pilots have employee expenses that are deductible as miscellaneous deductions. I use checklists to help these clients find all of their deductions. For example, we deduct required testing and ratings, at least a portion of cell phones and home computer used to keep up with job information. I put them in touch with specialized companies that easily and inexpensively calculate per diems that these pilots can deduct in excess of what Fedex reimburses.
This couple has other challenges. They have high incomes and their incomes are close in amount. In that case use of joint status may be best in some years and married filing separately may be better in others. My professional Proseries software compares their tax bill both ways.
Finally, pilots who live outside of Tennessee often pay state income taxes. The combination of state income taxes and miscellaneous expenses often leads to the dreaded alternative minimum tax. What do you do? Well, again, adding my knowledge of the tax law as a tax lawyer to my use of Proseries, I advise these clients how to avoid the AMT. For example, the AMT does not affect charitable deductions.
My Tax Mastery© provides these clients with an understandable road map to take control of their taxes Am I too expensive? They don’t think so!
Take Action: So if you are wondering if you don’t know what you don’t know, find out with no risk. Try my*
FREE 1/2 Hour Consultation:* Find out how to save some taxes, then lower your federal tax withholding and increase your take home pay.