Do you qualify for simplified reporting?

Spouses who operate a business together have a new option for reporting their business income. In the past, husband and wife joint owners were considered a partnership for reporting purposes. New rules, which took effect in 2007, give spouses the option of reporting their business income as two separate sole proprietorships.


Filing as two sole proprietorships reduces the number of returns that are required while reporting the income from the business just as before. The income and expenses from the business are allocated to each spouse based on their respective ownership interest. In most cases, income and expenses are split equally. Each spouse will report their share of the net earnings and pay self-employment tax on the total.

There are a few key points to consider before making this election. First, the spouses must file a joint return. Second, the spouses can be the only owners of the business. Third, each spouse must agree to the treatment as sole proprietorships. And lastly, both spouses must materially participate in the trade or business.

Tax Tips Small Business

  • Electing to Expense the Cost of Your Business Assets

    Section 179 deduction limits increase

    The IRS allows taxpayers the option of either depreciating some assets over a specified number of years or deducting all or a portion of the cost in one year. The expense election, commonly referred to as the Section 179 deduction, is made in the year the asset is placed in service. The benefit is a large deduction in the current year that is not reduced even if the asset is placed in service late in the tax year.

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Small Business Quick Tip

  • Business Mileage Rate

    Instead of deducting the actual expenses for the business use of your vehicle, opt for the standard mileage rate. In 2016, you can deduct 54 cents for each business mile you drive.
Tuesday, 16th October 2018
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Tax Tips Personal

  • Gambling Income and Losses

    Six Tips on Gambling Income and Losses

    Whether you roll the dice, play cards or bet on the ponies, all your winnings are taxable. The IRS offers these six tax tips for the casual gambler.

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Personal Quick Tip

  • Roth IRA Contribution

    You can actively participate in your employer's qualified plan and may still be able to contribute to a Roth IRA. A deduction for contributions to a traditional IRA may be limited or nondeductible if you are a participant in a qualified retirement plan.