As we approach the end of calendar year 2014, you may want to review your records and consider doing what you can to accelerate deductions and to defer income. Gifts to your church or to your favorite charities are always good. A direct distribution from your IRA to a charity may be beneficial, if your IRA income is more than you need. If you have appreciated low-basis stock, gifting the stock to charities give you a current gift of the full present value, while avoiding recognition of capital gain (win, win!) If you have a flexible source of income, like grain in storage or unbilled services, consider deferring the sale or invoice until after the first of the year.
We are also again in the window for obtaining Affordable Care Act health insurance, for those who are not covered at work or by Medicare. If you do not know whether your health insurance is an ACA-qualified plan, you really should check now, as there will be penalties assessed with few exceptions. I will be requiring my tax clients to provide me with documentation, including a copy of insurance cards.