Your Taxes: Questions for year-end tax planning

For a starter list of questions to check when filing taxes towards the end of the year, find the answers to these important questions.

Your Taxes_311 (photo credit: Thinkstock/Imagebank)
Your Taxes_311
(photo credit: Thinkstock/Imagebank)
Business profits and taxes need to be monitored regularly, especially towards the end of the year. Below is a starter list of things to check out. Professional advice is recommended in each relevant country.
On the business side, consider among other things:
• What are your goals, and are you achieving them?
• Are your sales increasing?
• Are you networking?
• Do you check your bank balances and cash flow every morning? • What is your gross profit rate?
• Can it be improved?
• What is your likely net profit after all expenses this year?
• What is your likely tax bill this year?
• Are installments paid?
• For year-end planning, check the amount and timing of: income, expenses, inventory count, and find out if other accruals are possible.
• Is project planning possible?
• Do you have charitable donations?
• Are your pension, hishtalmut (study funds) and life insurance enough to support you?
• If relevant, do you optimize the aliya 10-year exemption for foreign income?
• Are you an exporting manufacturer?
• If so, are you a preferred enterprise?
• Do you have, and optimize, intellectual property (IP)?
• Do you plan to file taxes on any foreign source income?
• Has the transfer pricing between your entities been reviewed?
• Are your accounting books up to date and helping you manage your records?
• Is your tax, VAT, and national insurance reporting up to date?
• Are all employee matters up to date? (This includes agreements, mandatory pensions, etc.)
On the family/personal side, consider these questions, among other things:
• Do you and your spouse have up-to-date wills in each relevant country?
• Are you expecting an inheritance from abroad?
• Are you planning against a double tax?
Personal investments
Consult a qualified investment adviser periodically.
• Do you owe foreign taxes?
• Do you have a Israeli foreign tax credit?
• Is your Israeli tax withheld at source?
• Do you have Israeli halfyearly capital gains tax reports?
• Do you optimize the aliya 10-year exemption?
• Do you have trusts?
• Are your pension, study funds and life insurance enough to support you?
• Do you have any charitable donations?
As always, consult experienced tax advisors in each country at an early stage in specific cases.
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The writer is a certified public accountant and tax specialist at Harris Consulting & Tax Ltd.