Owners of Florida’s leading agricultural businesses, including orange and grapefruit orchards, plant nurseries, vegetable farms, cow pastures, sugar plantations, chicken and egg farms, peanut fields, and cotton fields are eligible for the Section 175 deduction. Section 175 of the Internal Revenue Code allows Florida agribusiness owners to currently deduct, rather than capitalize, certain costs incurred […]
I’m hearing a lot about end-of-year gifts and changes to tax laws. What are some of the rules that I should be considering as I plan my year-end gifts?
Although Congress has yet to determine gift and estate tax legislation for 2010 and forward, here are some recommendations for you to consider: 1. Annual Exclusion Gifts The “annual exclusion” gift amount has not changed for 2010. In 2010, you may give any one or more persons up to $13,000 (each) during the year by […]
There has been a substantial increase in the use of specialized social networks by health care professionals such as physicians and nurses. These social networks provide a forum for these professionals to share experiences, collaborate and learn, and many commentators believe that their use is potentially very beneficial to the health care industry. This is especially true as this industry faces a myriad of economic problems and an uncertain future. What are some of the special problems associated with these specialized social networks, and what steps can health care professionals take to minimize the effects of these problems?
According to published statistics, 60% of physicians surveyed and 65% of nurses surveyed are interested in participating in a social network for professional purposes. According to Sermo, one of the most prominent physician social networks, approximately one out of every six United States physicians are members of its social network. The number of health care […]
I recently saw that the Palm Beach County Commission is drafting a local wage theft ordinance. What is a local wage theft ordinance and how does it impact my business?
If adopted, a local wage theft law would allow the county to investigate employers who allegedly fail to pay a worker all of his or her wages. Miami-Dade County adopted such an ordinance early this year and at the October 19 meeting of the Palm Beach County Commission, the county attorney was directed to draft […]
Why are so many people against Amendment 4?
Amendment 4, the proposed “Hometown Democracy” amendment to the Florida Constitution which will appear on the November ballot, would bring chaos, confusion, and economic deterioration to the State of Florida. Amendment 4 means higher property taxes and higher costs for all working families. Under Amendment 4, local governments would be required to hold expensive referenda […]
Some federal estate tax laws will be changing by the end of the year. Which ones do I need to know about?
At the end of 2010, we will see several changes to existing federal estate tax laws. For example, repeal of the federal estate tax will expire and the federal estate tax will be reinstated for 2011 going forward. Absent new legislation, the credit equivalent against federal estate taxes will only be $1 million as of […]
Recent media coverage indicates bedbug infestations have spread from hotel rooms to public buildings, executive board rooms, movie theaters and retail stores. In addition to the stigma that goes with an infestation, could these pests pose a threat to my company? Are there insurance and legal ramifications or employee relations issues?
Yes, as a business owner, you should be concerned about these issues. A recent survey found that most property managers, building owners and commercial real estate professionals are unaware of this growing threat. According to Robert Friedman, head of the insurance practice group at Gunster, bedbugs may give rise to liability claims. According to Friedman, […]
In today’s difficult job market, employees with severe medical issues may feel pressure to refuse medical leave or return to work early after a medical crisis for fear of losing their jobs. As an employer, what is the obligation of my company under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA)?
Not all employers are covered by the FMLA. The FMLA only covers employers with 50 or more employees. Employees must also meet certain requirements to be eligible for FMLA even if their employer is covered. In the event that both the employer and employee are covered, the FMLA provides up to 26 weeks of leave […]
I recently read that the economic recession has led to a surge in employee theft. As a business owner, what can I do to protect myself?
According to a 2010 report by the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, the typical organization loses 5 percent of its annual revenue to fraud and the median loss caused was $160,000. Nearly one-third of the fraud involved losses of at least $1 million. Many companies, large and small, are unaware that they can increase their […]
My company is expanding to do business in Europe and Latin America. I have heard that I need to be aware of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). What is it and how can I protect myself?
The FCPA, enacted in 1977, generally prohibits U.S. citizens, companies and certain foreign issuers of securities, from making or giving (or offering to make or give) a corrupt payment, or anything of value to a foreign official in order to retain business or gain any improper business advantage. If you are a public company, the […]