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Articles & Updates




  • 09.29.2014 - DOL Updates Guidance on Locating Missing Participants in Defined Contribution Plans
    On August 14, 2014, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued Field Assistance Bulletin No. 2014-01 (the FAB). When a defined contribution plan, such as a 401(k) or a 403(b) plan, is terminated, it is the plan sponsor’s responsibility to locate all participants and distribute their accumulated balances held by the plan as soon as administratively feasible. The FAB addresses a plan fiduciary’s duties regarding “missing” or “lost” participants in terminated defined contribution plans.
  • 09.25.2014 - Don’t Forget About the Massachusetts Estate Tax
    By now everyone has heard that the federal estate tax exemption is up to $5,340,000 for 2014, and the law allows the portability of a spouse’s unused exemption. So if the value of your assets is less than $5,340,000 (or $10,680,000 for a married couple) you might be thinking that you are in the clear and don’t need to worry about estate tax. Well if you live in Massachusetts, you need to think again.
  • 09.25.2014 - The Importance of Establishing a Record Retention Policy for Your Organization
    As accountants and business consultants, we are often asked how long business records should be saved. Recordkeeping is important because it provides information to support decision-making by management and is generally required by legal retention requirements.
  • 09.22.2014 - Your Reputation Shows in Your Financial Statement
    As you already know, your dealership’s reputation ultimately shows up in your financial statement. In fact, it is in every department. But how do you find it? Your reputation can either hurt or help your financial results. As we all know, a dealership stands out in most communities, especially rural areas. If you treat your customers badly or just don’t care about them, your financial statements are eventually going to show you how badly you are doing.
  • 09.22.2014 - Volume or Gross?
    Auto franchises’ financial statements are quite different in format and how the financial data is displayed for your review. Each franchise seems to think its format is the best to inform you as the dealer how your business is performing. They are very different but the basics remain. There is a balance sheet and an income statement. The income statement is broken up into many departments: new, used, F&I, service, parts, body shop, rental, quick lube, etc. Some statements show some of the variable expenses under the sales and gross profit area, and others show the gross and all expenses separately.
  • 09.22.2014 - New Rule Effective in 2015-One IRA Rollover Permitted Per Year
    The IRS is following the Tax Court ruling that the limit of one rollover per year applies on an aggregate basis and not on an IRA-by-IRA basis. The IRS withdrew a 1981 proposed regulation and announced that the new ruling will not apply to any rollover that involves a distribution that occurs before January 1, 2015.
  • 09.22.2014 - Five Types of Fraud Dealerships Can Prevent With Better Internal Controls
    The U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania recently indicted the former controller of a car dealership, who subsequently pleaded guilty to the charges. The indictment details several ways in which the controller stole $10.2 million over a six-year-period and highlights the importance of proper internal controls in a dealership. Many dealers are likely wondering whether something like this could happen in their dealership.
  • 09.22.2014 - Fair Credit and Fair Gain
    To know how to make a reasonable profit, to abide by government regulations and to offer fair credit contracts is vital to staying in business and doing good business in the automotive industry. However, it is not an easy task.
  • 09.18.2014 - Securing Your Cloud (Before You Fall From the Sky)
    The cloud is a revolutionary technology solution for businesses worldwide. Cloud utilization has led to a reduction in capital expenses, lessened IT department responsibilities and increased workforce access to information. Today, a considerable number of manufacturing businesses take advantage of what cloud computing has to offer. Although the cloud offers a wide array of benefits, it does not mean inherent risks do not exist. Implementing a cloud solution does not automatically protect a business from traditional IT threats and security risks. If you want to enjoy the benefits of the cloud and sleep easy at night, it is vital to fully understand what hazards exist in the world of cloud computing. This article explains cloud computing risks and the approach to take when evaluating a cloud provider.
  • 09.18.2014 - Improving Your Business through Globalization, Digitization, Rationalization and Transparency
    As the pace of change continues to accelerate for manufacturers, distributors and retailers (MDR) of all sizes, we see four driving forces at play: Globalization, Digitization, Rationalization and Transparency. We will take a quick look at defining these for you, but, more importantly, we will describe how technology, more specifically the cloud, can enable MDR companies of all sizes to manage and take advantage of these forces to improve your business.
  • 09.18.2014 - Does an Intercompany Asset Transfer Require a Sales Transaction?
    Often multinational companies contemplate making an intercompany transfer of an asset, commonly for operational or tax planning purposes. Intercompany transfers frequently include the sale of an entity for restructuring purposes, a trademark or patent sale customer relationships, among others. When such a transfer is contemplated, the company will often question whether a sales transaction needs to take place, particularly since the asset(s) is remaining “in the family”. This most commonly occurs when there is a transfer of intellectual property.
  • 08.27.2014 - Pepper Reports Updated for 2013 Claims Information
    The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has again contracted with TMF Health Quality Institute to produce a second round of Program for Evaluating Payment Patterns Electronic Report (PEPPER) reports for Skilled Nursing Facilities (SNF). Unlike the first round of reports which was mailed to your facility, this round of reports is available to the president or administrator of your facility after sign-up via a secure portal at pepperresources.org.

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