Wednesday, April 15, 2015

States Resort to Suspending Licenses in Effort to Collect Student Debt

The student loan bubble has ripened to such an extent that over 7 million debtors were in default as of mid-2014 and they're holding on to over $100 billion in outstanding debt. Consequently, both private and federal lenders are exploring a variety of tactics to collect outstanding payments. Those payments, after all, represent forecasted revenues that never arrived. One such tactic employed by the Education Department is engaging private debt collectors to bring in borrowed money. While they often rely on unethical (and illegal) pressure tactics to coerce borrowers to start paying, these glorified bounty hunters have earned over $1.6 billion in commissions and bonuses from 2010 – 2013. Still, when engaging debt collectors just doesn’t cut it, many states resort to other, more punitive means. 22 States have passed litigation that permits them to suspend professional and/or driver's licenses of student loan defaulters. [more...]

Tax Day - It's Not What You Make, It's What You Keep

Your U.S. Federal taxes are due. The average work week is over 40 hours now, and the IRS has decided to veer from its job description and play the role of U.S. job creator as well, after requesting funds for 9,000 new positions that would work to enforce Obamacare regulations. These additional jobs will count as added Gross Domestic Product (GDP), which means more people working on taking rather than making something useful like a service or product, which means someone - you, a U.S. citizen - will be taking on the burden of financially covering the expenses via heightened taxes. Each year the IRS makes changes to the tax code, and this year is no exception. One out of every four businesses will be affected by the Affordable Care Act. For those businesses or individuals that do not offer private insurance, market insurance, or any type of qualifying insurance at all, they will be required to pay the dreaded fine. However, despite proposals for ongoing increased costs, there are ways to bypass and cash in on the ultimate tax refund. [more...]

Government's Next Tax Target - Your Bank Account

Tax Day, April 15, reminds us of just how overtaxed we have become and how a circular cage of taxes on earning, spending, investing and saving is being created to snare us. If you earn money to live on, you face income taxes nationally as well as from 41 of the 50 states. If you buy anything, you face sales taxes in all but five states – and some local sales taxes in those five. In D.C., politicians now talk enthusiastically about imposing a national European-style sales tax, an easily-increased Value-Added Tax (VAT) to soak both companies and consumers. If you invest what little money you have left after paying all your other taxes, get ready to pay capital gains taxes, which the current administration aims to increase. [more...]

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Build Your Business to Sell

Entrepreneurs dream of the day they can call themselves business owners. They want to grow their ideas into tangible results, be their own boss and obtain financial freedom. However, the reality is that many of these individuals end up creating another job for themselves in which to work, rather than a business that works for them. The biggest mistake business owners make is that they do not plan their exit strategy. Most business owners decide to sell upon the occurrence of a catastrophic event, in which case their business is typically trending downward. The BEST time to sell is when your company is thriving, not dying. [more...]