2017 Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) Increase of 0.3% confirmed


[2017 COLA Confirmed] Despite fears that there would not be a Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) increase in 2017, the Social Security Administration (SSA) announced that benefits will in fact increase by 0.3% in January 2017. Over 65 million Americans who receive Social Security benefits or Supplemental Security Income payments will benefit from this increase. This is following a year […]

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2017 Tax Refund Payment Delays Likely According to the IRS – Continuing 2016 Trend


It looks like we may have a repeat of 2016 tax refund payment delays millions of American’s faced (and are still facing) this year. The IRS recently warned that there will likely be 2017 tax refund delays (for 2016 taxes due by April 15, 2017) for certain taxpayers subject to several new factors and legislation enacted […]

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2017 Military Pay Charts Reflecting 1.6% Raise – Updated Basic Pay Monthly Tables


[2017 update] Armed serviced members in 2017 will at minimum see a 1.6 percent increase in base pay based on the President’s latest executive order for government and uniformed service members pay raises. The final pay raise will be determined in a month or so once the final Employment Cost Index (ECI) figures are released. By law […]

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2017 Pay Raise Approved for Federal Employees on GS Pay Scale


[2017 Confirmed GS Pay Raise] The president has excised his executive power and given government employees on the GS pay scale and armed service members one of the largest raises in recent times. Civilian employees will receive a combined 1.6 percent raise (vs 1.3 percent last year) per the earlier update, which is made up of an […]

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2016 and 2017 SEP IRA Contribution Limits and Eligibility Rules


[Updated for 2016 and 2017 limits]  A year or so after starting my small business and completing my first annual tax return that showed a slight profit, my accountant advised that I start looking into a retirement account/plan for my business in order to lower my overall tax bill and also effectively set aside some […]

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Which Fund Allocations Should I Choose for My 401K or IRA Contributions in 2016 Given Markets, Economy and Elections


With the markets rocky, US and global economies facing headwinds and a presidential political campaign in full swing, choosing how to allocate your current and future retirement savings for the medium to longer term is no easy task. But rather than just leave your current 401K and IRA allocations as is amid changing macro and micro […]

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2017, 2016 and 2015 Earned Income Tax Credit (EIC) Qualification Income Limits


[Updated] Below are the final IRS published 2016 and 2017 Earned Income Tax credit (EITC) figures. You can reference IRS publication 596 or use online tax providers like TurboTax or H&R Block to get a free estimate of the specific credit amount you would get. How to read the EITC tables: The maximum amount of the earned income credit allowed/payable is shown in line […]

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2016 and 2017 401k, 403b Contribution Limits and Catch-up Amounts


[Updated with 2016 and 2017 contribution limits] The IRS has released updated employer sponsored retirement plan limits, which covers 401(k), 403(b), and Government Thrift Savings (TSP) plans. The annual contribution limit, which is indexed to inflation, remained unchanged over the last 2 years. So like 2015, the maximum amount employees will be able to contribute on a pre-tax basis in […]

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2016 vs. 2017 Federal IRS Tax Brackets, Tax Rates, Standard Deduction and Personal Exemption Updates


With the continued low inflation environment federal IRS tax brackets, standard deductions and personal exemptions have only moderately increased in the past few years. Federal income tax brackets and related tax items are adjusted annually, under the tax code, to provide for mandatory cost of living adjustments (COLA). The tables and changes below for 2016 and 2017 tax […]

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2016 vs. 2017 Obamacare Health Insurance Subsidies and Tax Credits


Despite ObamaCare, formally known as the Affordable Care Act, having been around for several years now there is still considerable uncertainty around the various tax credits and subsidies on premiums, deductibles, co-payments, and coinsurance. The value of these credits and subsidies are generally dependent on your modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) and family size and can significantly impact […]

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