Tax Matters

No Transaction Equals No Deduction

A CPA traveled to Russia to investigate business opportunities. He deducted expenses of $21,000 on his tax return for the trip. The Tax Court held that he was not “carrying on a trade or business.” The court concluded the CPA was investigating “potential trade” opportunities rather than engaging in trade activities because it found no evidence of completed business transactions. The deduction was disallowed and treated as a start-up expense. ( Massa v . Commissioner, TC Memo, 1999-63).

Michael Lynch, CPA, Esq., professor of tax accounting at
Bryant College, Smithfield, Rhode Island.


Year-end tax planning and what’s new for 2016

Practitioners need to consider several tax planning opportunities to review with their clients before the end of the year. This report offers strategies for individuals and businesses, as well as recent federal tax law changes affecting this year’s tax returns.


News quiz: Retirement planning, tax practice, and fraud risk

Recent reports focused on a survey that gauges the worries about retirement among CPA financial planners’ clients, a suit that affects tax practitioners, and a guide that offers advice on fraud risk. See how much you know with this short quiz.


Bolster your data defenses

As you weather the dog days of summer, it’s a good time to make sure your cybersecurity structure can stand up to the heat of external and internal threats. Here are six steps to help shore up your systems.