services about us careers client resources contact
Client Resources

Client letters

From time to time, we furnish letters to our clients that provide information on particular subjects and, occasionally, news from our firm. Please click on the links below to read the letters; the most recent is at the top of the list.

Year-End Checklist


  • Harvest capital losses to offset any realized gains or rebalance taxable investment accounts.
  • Consider harvesting any capital gains that can be realized in the 0% tax bracket.
  • Review charitable contributions to maximize income tax deductions.
    • Consider donation of appreciated assets that have been held for more than one year, rather than cash.
    • Opening and funding a Donor Advised Fund (DAF) as it allows for a tax-deductible gift in the current year and also the client’s ability to dole out those funds to charities over multiple years.
    • Qualified Charitable Distributions (QCDs) are another option for those over 70.5 and especially for those who don’t typically itemize on their tax returns.
  • Weigh the benefits of converting Traditional IRA to a Roth IRA to lock in lower tax rates on some pre-tax retirement accounts.
    • Remember that Roth Conversions can no longer be recharacterized so there’s no reversing once executed.
    • Keep in mind that Roth conversions will be more beneficial when the tax can be paid by funds outside of the IRA.
  • Remember that all IRA balances are included in the tax calculation of the conversion
  • Maximize contributions to a retirement plan, SEP IRA (self-employed) and Health Savings Accounts.
  • If age 72 or older or are a beneficiary of an applicable inherited IRA, take the required distributions before 12/31.
  • If income is expected to increase in the future, consider making Roth 401(k) contributions.
  • Review income tax withholding on retirement account distributions or wages and recommend any
  • Review the timing of income and deductions such as payments for tuition.


  • ake use of annual exclusion gifts.
  • Capitalize on the unlimited gift exemption for direct payment of tuition and medical expenses.
  • Consider gifting to a 529 plan by year-end if saving for a child's or grandchild's education.
    • Many states offer tax deductions for residents contributing to their state programs.
    • Consider gifting up to 5 years of the annual exclusion amount to an individual’s 529 plan and filing a gift tax return, electing to treat it as if it were made evenly over a 5-year period.
  • Confirm wills, trusts, and power of attorneys are up-to-date and consistent with current plans.
  • Review lifetime gift and GST gifting opportunities to use additional applicable exclusion and exemption amounts


  • Are there any major life changes such as marriages or divorces, births or deaths in the family, job or employment changes, changes in residency, and significant planned expenditures (real estate purchases, college tuition payments, etc.)?
  • Are pre-tax and Roth contribution amounts to retirement accounts for the new year updated and accurate?
  • Review various insurance policies and confirm whether the amount of coverage and deductibles are still adequate.
  • Review beneficiary designations and update, as necessary.
  • Confirm that Flexible Spending Account balances have been spent or there is a plan to spend the entire balance and set next year’s contribution amounts.
  • Review the investment portfolio and target asset allocation. Confirm whether the allocation is within the targeted ranges for each asset class as recent market performance could have caused allocations to drift dramatically.
  • Review any scheduled 4th quarter estimated tax payment needs and assess any liquidity for payments.
  • Consider an additional tax payment or increase in tax withholdings to eliminate a penalty or changes in a tax situation for the year.
  • Evaluate progress towards financial goals and review goals for the year and any changes in long term goals.
  • Plan for the unique change for IRA and 401(k) required minimum distributions for the upcoming year and beyond. With the change in the lifetime expectancy factors, required minimum distributions (RMDs) amounts could be somewhat smaller than prior years.
2023 Tax Season Individual Letter
December 2023

Dear client,

As the year draws to a close, now is the time to take a closer look at your current tax strategies to make sure they are still meeting your needs and take any last-minute steps that could save you money.

Let’s first take a look at a few new laws and some tax law updates.

Many of our clients have leftover money in their 529 plans after their children finish college. Under SECURE 2.0, starting 1/1/2024, you can do a rollover from a 529 educational savings plan to a beneficiary's Roth IRA up to a certain dollar limit. There are many limits imposed. For example, the maximum annual rollover is the IRA contribution limit for the year, less any other IRA contributions. Please discuss with us or your financial advisor before moving the funds to avoid potential pitfalls.

There is a change in the FAFSA rules that 529 plans owned by 3rd parties (non-parent) will not impact financial aid eligibility. This is known as the grandparent loophole.

Starting 2024, buyers that are eligible for the clean vehicle credits can transfer the credits to a registered dealer in return for a cash payment or having the credit treated as a partial payment or down payment on the vehicle.

The Corporate Transparency Act (CTA), a new anti-money laundering law that contains civil and criminal penalties for non-compliance is going into effect 1/1/2024. Many legal entities (such as corporations, limited partnerships, limited liability companies, statutory trusts) with less than 20 employees and $5M in gross receipts will need to report information about the reporting company, as well as its beneficial owner’s and company applicant’s personal information (BOI) to the US Department of Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN). Entities existing as of 12/31/2023 will have until 12/31/2024 to comply and then 30 days from any change to information initially filed. We recommend existing entities delay filing until later as the agency smooths out its processes and provides additional guidance.

New entities formed on or after 1/1/2024 will be required to file within 90 days of formation.

Please go to our website for additional information on CTA.

The Washington long term capital gains tax (7% on gains in excess of $250,000) caught many by surprise. The state has provided a few clarifications on how the tax is calculated.

  • Capital gain distributions from mutual funds are included as part of the long term gains
  • Long term gains from pass through entities (K1s) are included
  • Netting short term losses against long gains are NOT allowed
  • Only long term losses from 2022 (law enactment year) is allowed to be carried over to the next year(s) to offset future long term gains

A couple planning ideas on this tax if you might be subject to this tax. Do consider increasing your retirement contributions if allowed, as retirement accounts are exempt from this tax. If you are doing loss harvesting, try to create long term losses as they can help lower your WA threshold.

Here are some year-end planning ideas and some checklist items:

  • Don’t forget to take your RMD (required minimum distributions) before year end. To avoid penalties (they are significant) for missed RMD, we recommend signing up for auto RMD payment with your financial institutions.
  • Withholdings - the IRS requires prepayment of 110% of your 2022 taxes or 90% of your 2023 via payroll withholding or quarterly payments. Now is a great time to look at your projected tax. Doing this will help avoid unwanted penalties/interest (interest is now 8%!) as well as helping you plan for cash flow needs. Adjust your withholding if needed before the end of the year.
  • You can make a salary deferral to a retirement plan to reduce taxable income. Make sure your total salary deferral contributions do not exceed the $22,500 ($30,000 if over 50) limit for 2023. Goes up to $23,000 ($30,500 if over 50) in 2024. If you switched jobs, make sure the total of your contribution from all jobs does not exceed the limit. Those 401ks offering after-tax contributions and in-service distributions may want to consider a back-door Roth to “superfund” your Roth account.
  • If your retirement portfolio is depressed, or you are in a low tax bracket this year, you might want to consider the Roth IRA conversion strategy. Please keep in mind the conversion is a taxable event, so careful planning is needed. Also note the 2018 Tax Reform now disallows recharacterization (undo the conversion).
  • Qualified business income deduction - If you own a business or a rental property, you may qualify for this deduction (a potential 20% deduction on business profit). The deduction can be limited by taxable income, which means that planning to minimize income can be important.
  • If you have investments with an unrealized loss, consider whether you should realize those losses by selling the investments before the end of the year, especially if you have capital gains to offset. If you like the stock and want to buy it back, be aware of the wash sale rules, which are 30 days before and after the sale.
  • To the extent you can control the timing of your medical expenses, group them into the same tax year so they will exceed the yearly threshold to deduct them. The threshold is 7.5% of your adjusted gross income.
  • If you are thinking about making gifts to charities, consider appreciated securities. With the increase in standard deduction, if you are borderline with the standard deduction vs. itemized, you may want to consider “bunching” your donations in certain years, so that in a year of high donation, you take the higher itemized deduction; in a year of low donation, you take the standard deduction. If you are unsure which charities to give yet, or won’t be itemizing next year, but want the tax deduction this year, consider a donor advised fund (DAF).
  • Consider 529 plans to fund education. You can “superfund” it by front-loading 5 years of contributions with gift tax exclusion, so it will be gift tax free (a gift tax return is still required).
  • Make your charitable donation via RMD if you are required to take RMD, the limit is $100,000.
  • If you paid household employees $2,600 or more, the payroll tax filings are due by 1/31/2024.
  • The annual gift exclusion amount for 2023 is $17,000 per person; it will increase to $18,000 in 2024.
  • Now is a good time to Determine whether any updates are needed to your insurance policies or beneficiary designations.

If you are interested in scheduling a call to discuss year end planning moves, please contact us. For more tax planning tips and recent tax updates, please visit our website at .

January 2024 Engagement letters will be sent. Organizers are uploaded to your portal for you to access. Please use the tax organizers to minimize errors caused by omitted data. If you have received paper organizers in the past, they will be in the mail the 2nd – 3rd week.
February 1 - March 1, 2024 You may upload, drop off or mail in your tax data. If mailing, be sure to retain copies in case of misdirected mail. We recommend using our secure portal to upload your data. If you have to email, please password protect sensitive documents.
March 1, 2024 We must have the bulk of your tax data in order to prepare your tax return for filing by April 15, 2024.
April 1, 2024 We need your final open items, such as missing K-1s, to complete your return by April 15, 2024. This is also the deadline for you to provide us data if you want us to calculate extension payment(s).
April 15, 2024 Taxes must be paid, and returns or extensions filed; first 2024 estimated tax payment is due.
June 15, 2024 Your second 2024 estimated tax payment is due.
September 15, 2024 Your third 2024 estimated tax payment is due; if you are on extension, we need every last bit of your tax data!
October 15, 2024 Extended tax returns are due.

We do our best to work on tax returns whenever we receive your data, but we may not be able to complete returns by IRS deadlines when the data is submitted late. Our normal turnaround time for completion is 2–3 weeks. The turnaround for tax data received from late February on is typically about 4-5 weeks, please plan ahead.


We respect your privacy. The personal, non-public information we collect about you has been derived from information that you have provided to us directly or indirectly and from transactions with us. We do not disclose personal information about you to anyone outside our firm, except at your specific request, as required by law, or to our software vendors in resolving an IT issue.