MARIELA RUIZ, CPA, PLLC

Helping Individuals and Businesses Financially Thrive.

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Financial Controller Services

The growing pains that flourishing companies experience look different and fluctuate over time based on department, company size, rate of growth, and other key factors. In finance departments, management may notice that as transactions increase in volume and complexity, managing the day-to-day duties of accounting and finance, while maximizing growth and performance can get overwhelming. When this happens, it may mean it’s time to invest in adding a financial controller to the payroll.

What is a Financial Controller?

A financial controller is someone who’s a certified public accountant (CPA) or has equivalent industry experience and education in accounting or finance. Controllers are hired when a company’s finance department requires supplementary support with some of their financial oversight. Every financial controller job is unique, but most will be responsible for ensuring maximum financial efficiency, health, and compliance within their company.

Who Needs a Controller?

As a company becomes more inundated with business overtime, it is normal to crave additional assistance in order to ease the increasing workload on each individual. It is often the chief financial officer (CFO) of a company who will eventually require the direct support of a financial controller. Depending on the company, a financial controller may be responsible for helping the CFO with financial reports and statements, preparing budgets, providing internal audits, preparing taxes, managing purchase orders and other financial related duties.

Final Thoughts

Outsourcing financial controller services for your growing business can provide a cost-effective resource of support at a critical time in your business’ development. Whether your company needs temporary or permanent financial support, you can rely on Mariela Ruiz, CPA, LLC of South Texas! She has a proven track record in her field and is committed to honesty, efficiency, and success every time! Call our team today at (956) 997-0067 to find out how we can help you and your business thrive!

Accounting for Small Business Owners

One of the most challenging jobs entrepreneurs and small business owners are responsible for is accurately managing their finances and taxes up to legal standards. From payroll services to tax preparations most small business owners find that investing in expert outside help is well worth ensuring meticulous perfection throughout the books. Below we review some key points you or your CPA should be aware of when managing the finances for your small business.

Bookkeeping

It’s crucial for small business owners to keep accurate financial records regarding all aspects of their business through bookkeeping. Bookkeeping can include anything from payroll services and financial statement preparation to reviewing invoices and managing expenses and revenue. It provides vital data that can help with management decisions, taxes, and getting approved for business loans.

Audits

Nearly all successful businesses will perform regular internal and external audits to ensure authenticity and search for any inconsistencies. External audits are more effective than internal audits than because they eliminate any possible conflicts of interest, must be completed by a CPA, and provide impartial results.

Taxes

When it comes to small business taxes there is so much more involved than just the tax preparation itself. Many small business owners benefit from strategic tax planning and audit representation to further ensure their business is safeguarded by the best. Texas is home to the second largest economy in the country and with that comes unique tax conditions for franchise owners, limited liability companies, sole proprietorships and other small business owners.

Final Thoughts

Over the years Mariela Ruiz, CPA, LLC has provided countless business owners in Hidalgo County, TX with affordable and convenient bookkeeping and payroll services including audits, tax preparations, financial consulting, forensic accounting and much more. Visit our website for a full list of our array of services or call (956) 997-0067 for any questions you may have.

What is Solar Power Tax Credit?

Green energy sources have many benefits to you and the world, including a federal tax credit or home and business owners who have had solar power panels installed before December 31. The federal solar tax credit, known as the investment tax credit (ITC), is much more profitable than a deduction. However, for taxpayers to get the full benefit, the world needs a sufficient income. Here are what tax professionals should know about ITC.

Introduction

When the government provides a tax incentive, it is happy about it, especially when local and state enticements convoy it. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the government passed the ITC as part of the Energy Policy Act, which has been extended four times since its initial passage. The credit is now at 26 percent for the next two years so that eligible taxpayers can have a dollar-for-dollar decrease in the amount of income tax they owe. Taxpayers are looking forward to 2023 because the tax credit will drop to 22 percent. Renewable portfolio standards are in some states where utility companies give clients a specified minimum amount of electricity from solar. Utility companies buy energy made by a solar customer’s house. The value of solar renewable energy certificates will vary by state, but this is an example of taxpayer liberation.

How Does It Work?

            Solar power panels remain to provide people with prospective savings after filing their taxes. Solar energy creates opportunities to resell excess energy, evade power outages when harmonizing with a battery, and charge electric cars. The sun’s rays shine on the solar panels resulting in generating electricity that gives homeowners lower electric bills. The energy is completely free to the owner once the payment to the solar company ends. Also, solar power works all day, even when it is raining or dark overcast. Utility companies can offer the ability to sell back electricity to the grid for a credit on a homeowner’s electric bill. The utility companies can credit a home’s electric account.

The government is devoted to solar power that many states and cities have recognized property tax exemptions on solar. The solar panel installation calculates property tax fees giving homeowners and companies more money.

Conclusion

Solar energy panels have many benefits for businesses and homeowners. However, it could be challenging to understand everything about the tax deduction that comes with installation. You can count on Mariela Ruiz, CPA, PLLC, to help you with your taxes. We can give you tax advice for any situation you are in and find a financial solution that benefits you. We want to save you money by providing attentive and well-strategized plans, so call us at (956) 997-0067 today!

What You Need to Know for the 2021 Tax Season

Many will agree that 2020 has been a year of unique challenges but 2021 is just right around the corner! With that being said, below we discuss some things to keep in mind as we approach 2021 and the upcoming tax season.

Tax Day is Thursday April 15th, 2021

This is the date you must file you taxes before! Most can take the standard deduction which has increased from this year to $12,400 for single filers and $24,800 for married couples filing jointly. You may also itemize your deductions which is a little bit more painstaking, however is worth it if your itemized deductions exceed your standard deduction.

Stimulus Checks Aren’t Taxable

The CARES Act was instituted near the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic and gave many citizens a onetime payment of $1200. These payments will not count as taxable income in the upcoming year which is great news for most tax payers! You can think of it as a kind of advanced refund you would have received as part of your 2021 tax refund.

Unemployment Income is Taxable

The pandemic has caused much of the country to shut down for extended periods of time, leaving many Americans jobless through no fault of their own. If you were one of the millions of Americans who received unemployment benefits in 2020, you have to pay taxes on that income. If you opted to defer taxes on your unemployment payments before you received them then you will need to save for the taxes that will be due when you file, or pay estimated quarterly taxes to stay ahead.

Final Thoughts

As always, consult your tax professional to get the most out of your taxes in 2021 and speak with someone who can help you in your specific financial situation. Mariela Ruiz, CPA, PLLC is here to help individuals and business owners in the Mission, TX community with their taxes and wishes you all a prosperous 2021!

Financial Forecasting for Your Business

In order for your business to be successful in the future, it’s essential to have a financial forecast. What is a financial forecast? It’s an overview of your company’s current finances and resources. You can use it as a guide for budgeting and strategic targets for the future, allowing you to stay on track with goals for your business. It gives a detailed forecast of business trends so you can maneuver the direction you want the company to go. Learn more about the benefits of financial forecasting by reading our blog.

Clearing a Path

Preferred CFO says it best – “Having accurate and up-to-date financial records is vitally important for day-to-day operations. However, having an accurate financial forecast can be the difference between success and failure for a company.” This type of forecast reflects your company’s finances and resources, giving you the information you need for future planning, including long-term goals. These goals can be anywhere from six months to a year or even longer.

Confidence with Growth

Having confidence in your company is one thing, but it’s different when you have definite goals that you want to achieve. Of course, there are certain steps you must take, but with a financial forecast, it can help you get there. Following an accurate forecast can assist with growth within your business, as well as create trust and confidence with investors.

Plan of Action

With your financial forecast in hand, you can plan what resources you will need, including when and how to use them. For example, resources for your company may include cash investments, materials, employees, and so on. Using the forecast as a reference, you can make decisions based on accurate financial information. Answers to questions such as “how much do I need to make sure I don’t run out before the next funding round?” or “how many employees do I need to prevent overstaffing or understaffing to achieve this quarter’s goals?” are made much clearer.

Conclusion

MARIELA RUIZ, CPA, PLLC offers financial forecasting and projections for clients in the city of Mission and surrounding areas. With our certified public accountants by your side, you can be confident in our services and the success of your business. Get in touch with an accountant at MARIELA RUIZ, CPA, PLLC today!

Should You File Your Taxes Jointly or Separately?

For married couples who live together and share finances, tax season can bring with it a lot of questions about how you should file and why. In this month’s blog post we briefly dive into what couples need to know before filing their taxes and how they can determine if they should file jointly or separately.

Married Filing Jointly

Your filing status determines your tax rate and the amount of deductions you can qualify for. For most couples filing jointly is the best option for several reasons. Basically, married couples can continue to qualify for a lower tax rate despite having a higher taxable combined income. This tax break in addition to one of the largest standard deductions offered by the IRS makes filing jointly the best option for the vast majority of married couples.

Married Filing Separately

The circumstances in which a married couple would benefit more from filing separately are far and few between. They mostly include situations where one spouse has outstanding deferred debt that needs to be collected promptly. Examples can include having large amounts of student debt or costly outstanding medical bills. Filing separately is also the best option for couples who are expecting to get divorced within the year.

Final Thoughts

If you’re still unsure of which status makes the most sense for you, call on a highly qualified and experienced CPA. One tax service does not fit all so it’s important to turn to a professional who is committed to finding the absolute best option for you and your family. Contact the experts here for a variety of services including forensic accounting, tax services, financial consulting, bookkeeping, and much more.

Steps to Take Before Filing Your Taxes

Before you contact your tax preparer, ensure you have the necessary documents to hand over. It’s important to have previous year’s tax information, as well as current receipts and documents. Getting an early start on gathering these items will not only speed up the process, but give your tax preparer more time to double check all of your information. Learn more about which forms you will need to file a complete tax return.

The Essentials

Forms from employers, banks, and other businesses need to be filed your tax return, so have these documents ready to go. Some of the most common forms include Form W-2, Form 1099, and Form 1098. These documents indicate the income you’ve received from the previous year. If you are unsure about which documents need to be filed, get in contact with your tax preparer for confirmation.

The Receipts

Receipts act as a form of proof to show so you can properly itemize your deductions. Whether you choose itemize or claim the standard deduction, it’s a good idea to compare your findings and see which one has the greater write-off. Your list of expenses may include anything from medical costs and mortgage interest to charitable contributions. Consult with your tax preparer if itemizing is worth it.

The Tax Return from Last Year

Grab your tax return from last year, even if you are using the same tax preparer. You can look over it for any inconsistences and ensure your current tax return is up to date. It can also provide details about forms you received from last year, and that you have these forms from this year too. Investopedia also comments, “If you made small gifts, you may not have received any acknowledgment from the organization, but you can still deduct these contributions as long as you have a canceled check or other proof.”

Conclusion

The process of filing taxes can be confusing, so let our certified public accountants do the work for you. We are here to prep your tax documents and handle all forms with the utmost professionalism. Refer to MARIELA RUIZ, CPA, PLLC for tax preparation services today.

The CPA: Your Litigation Support Professional

There are a wide variety of types of court cases that can require the additional support of a CPA. Oftentimes in civil and business litigation, courts and powerful legal teams will require a CPA to weigh in based on their expertise in finances and accounting. Follow along with this blog to learn about the types of cases they typically work on and how having a CPA on your legal team can help you get the case results you seek.

Forensic Accounting

While forensic accounting may sound like a job reserved for detectives or the secret service, it is broad term used when a certified accountant applies the theories and principles of accounting in a legal setting. A CPA hired for litigation support purposes will review bank statements, receipts, time sheets, and any other necessary financial documents involving the case.

Business and Civil Litigation

Too often complex accounting, appraising, and tax issues find their way into business litigation. A certified public accountant with litigation support experience most often work either for or against a business to prove or disprove alleged disputes. For example, forensic accounting can either make or break cases involving bankruptcy, fraud, data analysis, damage evaluations and more.

In addition to business litigation, civil litigation cases will often require the additional support and expertise of a CPA as well. Most often their role in court will be as a consultant, but there are times when they are asked to stand as an expert witness too. Civil cases that could benefit from a CPA’s support can include those involving marital settlements, taxes, valuations and more.

Conclusion

When litigation is simply unavoidable, ensure that you have a solid legal team working in your favor. A CPA working to support your case will able to provide a judge and jury with indisputable evidence and facts that less qualified individuals wouldn’t have been able to uncover. For a CPA who’s highly experienced in providing top notch litigation support and forensic accounting services, contact us today!

What is a PLLC and What Do They Do?

Chances are you have seen the letters LLC posted after a company’s name, but do you know what it means? It’s important to first understand what a limited liability company (LLC) is and what it does in order to understand what a professional limited liability company (PLLC) is. Follow along with this blog to find out the difference between the two, who can form these groups, and why they do.

LLC vs PLLC

An LLC is a term used in the U.S. to describe a type of hybrid corporate structure used by some professional companies. These companies are owned by multiple partners, or members, which work to ultimately combine the liability protections of a corporation with the tax benefits of a partnership. The most notable difference here between the two is that unlike a PLLC, virtually anyone can become a member of an LLC.

A PLLC is essentially the same as an LLC but is owned and operated by licensed members of the same profession who will only be performing services specific to their profession. Some states require these professionals to form PLLC’s rather than standard LLC’s because they are licensed specialists. A major difference between these two types of companies is that members of a PLLC are personally liable for their own malpractice, should it occur, but not each other’s.

Who can form a PLLC?

In the states where PLLC’s are required to do business, groups are generally made up of lawyers, doctors, engineers, accountants, and other licensed professionals. This partnership arrangement requires documents to be filed with and approved by the state the business hopes to operate in. Additionally, each of the members will need to have their licenses validated by the state before approval.

Benefits of a PLLC

There are some pretty notable benefits in establishing an LLC or PLLC rather than a corporation. The main benefits of PLLCs are their limits on liability and the tax perks. More specifically, their limitations on liability for owner’s taxation and the availability of pass-through taxation. Pass-through taxation enforces that PLLC’s are the responsible parties at tax time, and not the owners. Additionally, these individuals will not be personally liable for the business’ debts or any lawsuits against the business.

Conclusion

At the end of the day, only licensed professionals of the same profession can establish PLLC’s. Though it’s important to keep in mind that each state has their own list of rules and regulations about PLLC’s and the steps that must be taken to establish and operate one. Ultimately, these two types of companies are much easier and cheaper to form than traditional corporations are.

Deciding if you should choose to do business with a member of a PLLC is a no brainer. Professionals who are members of PLLC’s will most likely be very serious licensed professionals who are supported by a group of other educated professionals. For a top notch certified public accountant who is also a PLLC member, call on the offices of Mariela Ruiz, CPA, PLLC.

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