Tax Help

  1. 1
    Any experienced PDNs who do their own taxes?

    I am a private duty Medicaid nurse in NY. I have been a nurse for 11 years, but just started PDN last year. I've done my own tases since I was a kid, but being "self-employed" is really confusing. I took my taxes to a popular tax place last year, (which I won't name) and they didn't do any business deductions or credits for me, ( and wanted to charge me >$300). I ended up doing my own taxes, ended up owing ~$1000 less than I was quoted with the deductions I did, but still owed >2k.

    Are there any resources for PDNs or guides as far as what types of things we can deduct, credits wer can claim, etc? I'd really like to get all I can/ owe as little as possible this year. Hints and suggestions appreciuated!
    somenurse likes this.
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  4. 0
    dang, this is such a great question!! I do NOT know, but, in reading some of the threads in the Specialty areas,
    in both the PDN threads and the Entrepreneur nurses area,
    i saw a post or two where some self-employed RNs hired accountants, to help them withhold quarterly taxes, to avoid that "end of year" kick. This does seem to be a concern for the self employed, is their taxes.

    HOPE SOMEONE WHO KNOWS sees this and stops by to help you.
  5. 2
    Accountants are like nurses, physicians, or physical therapists-- there are generalists, there are specialists, and there are people who just do better work with one thing or another. If the commercial chain didn't do a good job for you, ask around for referrals to another provider. Call your attorney, your dentist, your small grocery store owner... see who they use. Small business is small business.

    I worship my tax accountant. I have given her the passwords to my business credit card account (where ALL business-related charges go), and my checking accounts (business, so she can withhold taxes and pay the credit card bills, and personal, so she can put whatever's left in my personal account). She does my personal and business taxes, so there are no missing connections between them. She charges me about $90/month for all that, which she takes out of the business account (deductible), well worth the time I used to spend agonizing over it all.
    hiddencatRN and somenurse like this.
  6. 1
    The chain tax preparation companies aren't usually good for small businesses. GrnTea is right: ask around and find yourself a nice firm of accountants. You may not need to go as far as GrnTea did though. My husband is self-employed in construction and owns a lot of tools, and deducts the use of his truck. We use an accountant to do the taxes once a year. It costs us about $400 (but that hasn't gone up in 10 years), and in addition to deductions, they also do all the depreciation of his business assets (tools and truck). A real accountant can also give you tips and hints for (legally) reducing your tax liability.

    If you are self-employed and not already making quarterly estimated payments, you NEED to do so. It's not just so you don't take a big hit on April 15th. The IRS imposes financial penalties for failure to make quarterly payments.
    somenurse likes this.
  7. 1
    I worked as an independent contractor for a year in hospice nursing. I had my taxes done at H&R block and got a letter TWO years later stating that I owed the IRS over ONE THOUSAND DOLLARS. I did the estimated quarterly taxes the whole time I worked as an independent contractor to avoid just that very situation.

    If you do use a tax pro, I recommend asking for their experience with independent contractors and asking for a few references from their independent contractor clients.

    Here is a link to the Self-Employed Individual Tax Center from the IRS:

    Self-Employed Individuals Tax Center

    I thought it would be too complicated to deal with myself so I went to a tax pro (fat lot of good it did). You can make a lot of deductions on equipment and such but you must account for depreciation, blah, blah, blah. I didn't have the time or patience to do it myself, but kudos to you if you do.

    Finally, keep all of your receipts and records as I read somewhere that independent contractors are especially targeted for audits.

    Good luck!
    somenurse likes this.
  8. 1
    I used to work for H&R Block, and I definitely recommend that you don't find a large chain of tax places to do your small business taxes. Most of the people who work there are just young people they find and give basics-of-filing courses so they can help the majority of people who use H&R Block. The one I worked for happened to be a franchise instead of corporate location, so my boss knew her stuff really well and so did a lot of the little old ladies who worked there, but you don't usually get that lucky, and the fees are absolutely outrageous. Good luck with it!
    somenurse likes this.


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