TAX REFORM

President Trump signed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act into law on December 22, 2017. Highlights of the changes to come for 2018 are below:

The tax brackets will change, introducing new rates and income thresholds. The new rates of 12%, 22%, 24%, 32%, and 37% replace the old rates of 15%, 25%, 28%, 33%, and 39.6%, respectively with updated income thresholds for each rate.   The qualified dividends and capital gains rates would be adjusted to the new brackets accordingly.

Elimination of the personal exemption

Elimination of the Affordable Care Act's individual mandate; taxpayers will not be penalized for lack of qualified healthcare coverage; this will not be implemented until 2019

Increase of the standard deduction to $12,000 for single filers and $24,000 for married filing jointly filers

Expansion of the tax breaks available for child care and care of the elderly; including creation of a tax-free Dependent Care Savings Account option

Increase of the child tax credit from $1,000 to $2,000 per qualifying child, to be phased out for taxpayers with income greater than $200,000 ($400,000 if married; an increase from $110,000)

$10,000 cap on the deduction for the total amount of state and local property tax and income tax or sales tax

Elimination of reporting alimony as income for the recipient and as a deduction for the payer; this goes into affect for the 2019 tax year

Reduction of the AGI floor for medical expense deductions to 7.5%

Expansion of the 529 account provisions to include savings for K-12 and homeschool expenses

Increase of the exemption amounts for the estate tax and alternative minimum tax to 12 million per person and $70,300 ($109,400 if married), respectively

Decrease of the corporate tax rate to 21%

Expensing of certain capital assets in lieu of depreciation for all business entities for the next five years, to be phased out in the subsequent five years. The assets can be new or used.

Pass-though business income will be eligible for a 20% deduction, subject to income thresholds