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  • Pay itemized deductions before December 31, 2010 to save 2010 taxes:
    1. 2010 income taxes
    2. 2010 real estate taxes
    3. January, 2011 mortgage payment
    4. Charitable donations – donate appreciated stock to your charities and deduct the fair market value of the stock and no tax is due on the appreciation of the stock
  • If you are in the 10% or 15% tax brackets consider selling stocks with long term capital gain.  The gains are tax-free up to your 25% tax bracket.  The 25% tax bracket begins at $68,000 for married joint returns and $34,000 for single filers.
  • If you will owe Alternative Minimum Tax for 2010, then defer paying taxes owed at year end to 2011 as well as most miscellaneous deductions.


  • Business owners using the cash method of accounting for tax purposes can shift income and expenses between 2010 and 2011 by delaying or accelerating receipt of income or payment of expenses.


  • If a business owner needs to purchase a car or equipment within the next 6-12 months, then the purchase should be completed by December 31, 2010 to claim the IRS Section 179 expensing deduction and new asset purchases qualify for the special 50% bonus depreciation deduction.  Certain limitations apply.


2012 began with great uncertainty over federal tax policy and now, with the end of the year approaching, that uncertainty appears to be far from any long-term resolution. A host of reduced tax rates, credits, deductions, and other incentives (collectively called the “Bush-era” tax cuts) are scheduled to expire after December 31, 2012. To further complicate planning, over 50 tax extenders are up for renewal, either having expired at the end of 2011 or scheduled to expire after 2012. At the same time, the federal government will be under sequestration, which imposes across-the-board spending cuts after 2012. The combination of all these events has many referring to 2013 as “Taxmeggedon.”


Effective January 1, 2013, the individual income tax rates, without further Congressional action, are scheduled to increase across-the-board, with the highest rate jumping from 35 percent to 39.6 percent. The current 10 percent rate will expire and marriage penalty relief will sunset. Additionally, the current tax-favorable capital gains and dividends tax rates (15 percent for taxpayers in the 25 percent bracket rate and above and zero percent for all other taxpayers) are scheduled to expire.

Higher income taxpayers will also be subject to revived limitations on itemized deductions and their personal exemptions. The child tax credit, one of the most popular incentives in the Tax Code, will be cut in half. Millions of taxpayers would be liable for the alternative minimum tax (AMT) because of expiration of the AMT “patch.” Countless other incentives for individuals would either disappear or be substantially reduced after 2012. While a divided Congress may indeed act to prevent some or all of these tax increases, a year-end planning strategy that protects against “worst-case” situations may be especially wise to consider this year.



A trust enables ordinary people with ordinary money to be prudent with their property. People too often assume that their modest assets wouldn’t warrant the need for a trust. “But if you buy enough life insurance to provide for your spouse and kids, you’ve created an estate,” says Bill Hesch, CPA, Esq., “The trust would be used to hold the life insurance.”


On January 1, 2011 nearly all of the Bush era tax cuts will expire. Thus taxes will automatically increase in 2011 without any action being required by congress. All of the marginal tax rates will be increased, with the highest income tax bracket going from being taxed at a marginal rate of 35% to a rate of 39.6%.

Knowing this, there are significant planning opportunities to save taxes by deferring certain deductions which could be taken in 2010 into 2011. One major deduction which can be shifted into future years is the deduction for pension contributions.

Deductions for contributions to qualified pension plans are generally allowed for the tax year in which the contributions are paid.  A special rule allows an employer to treat a contribution made on or before the due date of the employer’s tax return, including extensions as being made on the last day of the tax year for which the return is being filed. For example, an employer can extend his 2010 tax return and have until September 15, 2011 to fund the pension contribution and still be able to take the deduction on the 2010 tax return.

In the case of tax year 2010, the employer will save taxes by simply filing the return before the pension contribution is made. Thus, the employer can defer the deduction into year 2011 when tax rates will be higher and therefore the benefit of the deduction will be greater.

Assume that the employer is an S Corporation with one shareholder who is in the highest income tax bracket and that the employers required pension contribution for the tax year 2010 is $100,000. If the owner were to extend the corporation’s tax return and pay in the pension contribution on or before September 15, 2011 the contribution can be deducted on the corporations 2010 return and the sole shareholder would receive a tax benefit of $35,000 ($100,000 x 35% highest marginal tax rate for 2010). If on the other hand the corporation did not extend the tax return, the pension contribution would still be due by September 15, 2011. However the corporation would take the deduction on its 2011 tax return. The sole shareholder would receive a $43,400 tax benefit ($100,000 x 43.4% the total of the 39.6% highest marginal tax rate in 2011 plus the 3.8% Medicare tax on high income individuals).

Simply by filing the corporations tax return before paying in the pension contribution the shareholder has deferred the deduction into a year in which he will have a higher tax rate and received a 8.9% greater tax benefit. It should be noted that the 2010 pension contribution will be due no later than September 15, 2011 regardless of which year the deduction is taken and this strategy will not affect the amount of your required pension contribution for 2011 or later years.

Many employers fund their pension plan contributions currently by making monthly payments or a large contribution at year end. These employers need to stop making pension contributions until after the due date of the 2010 tax return. If the tax return is filed before the due date, the due date is not deemed to have been extended for purposes of defining when the pension contribution is made.


I. The problem – Money is the #1 problem in relationships today

A. Since 2005 our country has been in a negative savings mode nationally.

Debts have increased and household budgets are getting stretched to the limit.

B. Higher gas and medical costs are now forcing the average person to cut their personal living expenses deeper and deeper.

C. The average person at all income levels $15,000/50,000/100,000 is spending more than they make in take home pay and the solutions are not easy.

II. The solutions to your money problems usually lie in the need to make better Cincinnati financial planning budgeting decisions, by putting your personal budget on paper and using it to control your spending.

STEP 1 – Plan your personal budget and set goals

A. Identify your fixed monthly expenses

B. Identify your goals for your discretionary expenses like food, gas, entertainment, etc.

C. Leave some cushion in your budget for unexpected needs – car repair expenses, home repairs, health problems

D. Target 10% of your income for savings in your 401(K)/IRA

E. Build cash reserves equal to 3-6 months of monthly bills

STEP 2 – Measure and manage your personal spending habits –

Keep score daily!!!

A.        Analyze your actual spending habits

B.        Keep track of all daily expenses for 3 months and compare to your budget

C.        Treasure each dollar you earn

D.        Identify what expenses can be cut so you spend less than you budget, if possible

1.         Buy only what you need, not what you want each day for each purchase.  Eliminate emotional spending completely.

2.         Shop wiser by looking for lower prices, buy what you need when it is on sale and use coupons and discount programs offered by merchants in newspapers, magazines or the internet.

3.         Pay all of your fixed expenses first and be disciplined to not use your credit card when you are spending more than what you earn.  Change your spending habits by saying “NO” to yourself.

4.         The solution may lie in reducing the cost of your home and car by downsizing ASAP!!!

STEP 3 – If you are not making enough money to meet the lifestyle that you have budgeted for, then the solution may be that you need to make more money.

1. Look for a better paying job.  Do not quit your job until you have another job ready to go.

2. Seek more education in an area of work that will result in a better paying job to meet your financial needs in your budget.

3. Get a second job if you need more money now to meet your financial needs in your budget.  Are you willing to pay the price of working a second job or do you really need to cut your expenses??

CONCLUSION:       The solutions lie in each person finding the changes they need to make in their lives.  Making more money and spending less and investing more is easier said than done.  The solution usually lies in being disciplined in spending less and living below your means.  In doing so you will free up extra money each month to pay off your debts or increase your Cincinnati retirement planning assets to provide for your long term financial security.


American households are struggling to make ends meet with higher gas prices and the trickledown effect on the cost of our day to day household expenditures.  Now more than ever, households are living paycheck to paycheck.  An ominous sign of the times are “middle income” families beginning to seek help from the food pantries.

One solution is putting together and managing your personal budget.

1. Review current spending habits.

The first step is to review your bank statement and credit card statements to identify where your money is being spent.

The baseline helps benchmark your current spending habits and it may be necessary to estimate what you have been spending if spending receipts are not available.

1.Create your personal budget by reviewing where you believe you have been spending your money and identifying what changes in spending habits are needed to “balance” your budget.

Your budget is your goal for planning to make the right choices so that your monthly expenditures do not exceed your monthly income.

1. Monitor and keep track of your daily expenditures for three months.  Challenge yourself each day for each purchase – Do I really need this? Say no to yourself and begin new personal spending habits.

Be creative – begin planning more home cooked meals and entertainment choices and dining choices that are less costly.

Use coupons to save money on your planned purchases. Be proactive and make your car and home repairs when the problem first arises as well as be sure to do your preventative maintenance on a timely basis.

One basic strategy is to pay all fixed expenses first and then allocate what is left among your variable/ contingent expenses in your budget.  To be safe, you need to budget 5% for contingencies to give yourself a cushion for the unexpected and 5–10% for retirement for retirement planning to responsibily plan for your retirement.

You need to plan for major purchases by putting money away into savings to buy a new piece of furniture or a new computer.

The purpose of the personal budget is to help you plan for your financial security and retirement in the long run.  The real key is to get your priorities identified in your budget.  Our society is a NOW/ ME society and we all need to follow the values/ priorities that our grandparents learned from the Great Depression.  Do not spend money unless you have it on hand and make decisions that are good in the long term. Cincinnati financial planning basics are required for every family in order to be successful in this new economy.


Submitted by: Chris Allen, President – The Business Spotlight, Inc. and Committee Member of Emerging 30

The William E. Hesch Law Firm, headquartered in Cincinnati, OH, is owned and operated by Bill Hesch, Owner/CEO. His company, founded in 1993, focuses on providing great legal, tax & financial advice (licensed attorney, CPA & Personal Financial Specialist [PFS]) for business owners and high net worth individuals (Estate, Elder Law & Medicaid Planning). Website:

Bill’s very proud to be recognized again as a N. KY Chamber Emerging 30 business. The continued growth is a direct result of providing the expertise and services most needed and wanted by his clients. His focus to get the additional certifications, including PFS, so he can offer holistic advice [both legal and financial] for a person’s business, estate, taxes and health care planning really provides the one-stop shop that high net worth individuals really value. He is the only one in the city practicing across all areas.

Bill’s original inspiration to become an attorney was from JFK. He either worked in evenings or studied every night throughout law school to earn his degree with very high marks from Chase Law School (3rd in class!).

He credits the people working with him across the law firm (and the CPA firm) for his continued success. The right team has allowed me to double revenues over the past four years during a recession.

Bill loves what he does and gets pumped up over solving the really complex issues his clients may come across. He has seen others who have left the game and doesn’t believe he’ll ever truly retire!


You are invited to attend our free one-hour program!

  • Life/Disability/Long-Term Care Insurance.
  • Health Care Power of Attorney, Living Will, and Financial Power of Attorney.
  • Failure to use a trust or transfer on death provisions for your assets

5:30 p.m. Registration

Hors d’oeuvres & Beverages

6:00 p.m. Program

6:45 p.m. Q&A

7:00 p.m. Conclusion & Tours

Presented by:
William E. Hesch Law Firm, LLC

Amy Pennekamp, Attorney

William E. Hesch, Attorney and CPA

Location: Carriage Court of Kenwood Assisted Living & Memory Care

4650 East Galbraith Road
Cincinnati, Oh 45236




Top 10 mistakes that may devastate your family & their financial security when you become sick or die…

1. Failure to make sure you have enough life/disability insurance to provide for your family if you become sick or die.

2. Failure to execute a Health Care Power of Attorney, a Living Will, and a Financial Power of Attorney thereby resulting in your family needing to go through probate court to be appointed your guardian in order to avoid what Terri Schiavo had to do for 10 years—being kept alive on life support with a feeding tube.

3. Failure to use a trust in your estate plan to insure that your spouse and children do not recklessly deplete their inheritance and insure the assets pass to your heirs upon their deaths

4. Failure to designate a person who will raise your children if both parents die without a Last Will and Testament.

5. Failure to have a Last Will and Testament if you are a Kentucky resident will result in your spouse only receiving half of your property while your children receive the other half.

6. Failure to use a trust or transfer on death provisions for your assets resulting in your estate needing to go through probate.

7. Failure to designate beneficiaries of your IRAs, 401(k) and other retirement plans resulting in negative tax consequence to your heirs.

8. Failure to pre-plan your funeral causing stress on your family.

9. Failure to organize your records resulting in family members having a lot of stress trying to find all of your important papers.

10. Failure to plan your business successor to avoid resulting chaos and possibly causing your business to fail or be sold at a bargain price.


Top 5 problems that arise when you leave money to your family upon your death and the unexpected consequences that would cause you to roll over in your grave

1.Heirs recklessly spend their inheritance: Failure to leave your estate to your heirs in a trust means that your family “wins the lottery” upon your death. Your spouse and/or children may recklessly spend their inheritance within months or years, which is what most lottery winners do. A trust can control what distributions are made to your surviving spouse and/or children after your death and also delay the distributions over a number of years.

2.Wrong heirs inherit your estate: Failure to leave your estate to your heirs in a trust means that your surviving spouse or children own the assets outright and may choose to leave their inheritance to their second spouse, stepchildren or non-family friends instead of to your children or grandchildren upon their death. A trust can control who inherits what property upon the death of your surviving spouse and/or children and delay distributions so that your grandchildren inherit your estate after the death of your children.

3.Heirs make bad investments decisions: Failure to leave your estate to your heirs in a trust means that your surviving spouse and/or children own the assets outright and may make bad investments and lose their inheritance within a matter of a few years. If a trust is set up properly with a trustee and successor trustees, you can control who makes the investment choices for the trust assets so that your family members do not end up like many lottery winners who go bankrupt as a result of bad investments.

4.Heirs with drug/alcohol problems use your money to feed their addiction: Failure to leave your estate to your heirs in a trust means that family members who have a drug or alcohol problem may stop working or going to school and use their inheritance to fund their lifestyle of drugs and alcohol. A trust can be used to control distributions to your heirs and limit their access to trust money if their drug or alcohol problem causes them to stop working or going to school.

5.Heirs lose inheritance to their creditors: Failure to leave your estate to your heirs in a trust means that family members own the assets outright and if they are subject to a lawsuit or the claims of their creditors, their inheritance may be lost to their creditors. A trust if properly set up can provide asset protection for your family members so that any assets held in trust for them are not subject to the claims of their creditors.

Solution: Each of these 5 problems identify why you need a trust in your estate plan. Don’t let these unexpected consequences hurt your family. Call Bill today for a free review and assessment to determine if you need a trust in your estate plan or if your current trust needs to be updated.