Oops, Don't Take My Tax Advice

BY STANLEY ZAROWIN

Alan E. Weiner, a CPA with Holtz Rubenstein Reminick of Melville, N.Y., chided me for probably giving bad tax advice when I suggested in the May issue (page 87) that accounting firms donate their used computers to a worthy cause and take a tax deduction. In all likelihood, he says, the computers were fully depreciated, so while you might feel good about the donation, it won’t net a tax break.

Stanley Zarowin, a former JofA ssenior editor, is now a contributing editor to the magazine. His e-mail address is zarowin@mindspring.com .

Do you have technology questions for this column? Or, after reading an answer, do you have a better solution? Send them to contributing editor Stanley Zarowin via e-mail at zarowin@mindspring.com or regular mail at the Journal of Accountancy, 201 Plaza Three, Harborside Financial Center, Jersey City, NJ 07311-3881.

Because of the volume of mail, we regret we cannot individually answer submitted questions. However, if a reader’s question has broad interest, I will answer it in a forthcoming Technology Q&A column.

On occasion you may find you cannot implement a function I describe in this column. More often than not it’s because not all functions work in every operating system or application. I try to test everything in the 2000 and XP editions of Windows and Office. It’s virtually impossible to test them in all editions and it’s equally difficult to find out which editions are incompatible with a function. I apologize for the inconvenience.

SPONSORED REPORT

A new line of business to consider

Technology assessments may open the door to new engagement opportunities for your firm. What is a technology assessment? How do you perform one? JofA Tech Q&A author J. Carlton Collins shows you in a detailed explanation.

FEATURE

Maximizing the higher education tax credits

A counterintuitive strategy can save taxes by including otherwise excludable scholarships in gross income.