On December 20 the President signed into law two spending packages that will fund the government through the rest of the fiscal year. Included in the spending packages were the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement (SECURE) Act, and a number of tax provisions, many of which may have an impact on your future financial planning. HBK is currently reviewing these important provisions and will be providing a more in-depth look at what many of these provisions may mean for you. For now, the following provides a quick overview of some of the more impactful provisions:

SECURE Act Provisions

  • The age at which individuals need to start taking required minimum distributions (RMDs) has increased from age 70 ½ to age 72 (note that this increase only applies for individuals who have not reached the age of 70 ½ on or before December 31, 2019);
  • There is no longer an age cap for individuals to make contributions to Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs);
  • Inherited IRAs must now be paid out over a ten (10) year period, and cannot be stretched out over the lifetime of the non-spouse beneficiary;
  • Up to $10,000 held in a Section 529 plan may now be used to pay off student debt; and
  • Up to $5,000 may be withdrawn, penalty free, from a Section 401(k) plan in order to help with the costs of childbirth or adoption (income taxes still apply).

Other Tax Provisions

  • Many taxes that were enacted as part of the 2010 health care reform law have been repealed, including the 2.3% medical device excise tax and the 40% excise tax on high-cost health insurance plans (known as the “Cadillac tax”);
  • A number of tax credits have been extended, including the work opportunity tax credit, credits for energy-efficient homes, and credits for health insurance costs of eligible individuals;
  • The high tax rate on investment income of private foundations has decreased from 2% to 1.39%;
  • The transportation fringe benefit tax that was imposed on tax-exempt organizations by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 has been eliminated; and
  • The changes made to the tax rates imposed on children’s unearned income (known as the “kiddie tax”) have been eliminated, so that the income will no longer be taxed at the higher tax rates of trusts and estates, but will now be taxed at the highest marginal tax rates of the child.
About the Author(s)
Amy L. Dalen, JD is a Principal and Tax Advisory Group Chair at HBK CPAs & Consultants and provides support services for the CPAs in all HBK offices. She is a member of the HBK Tax Advisory Group, specializing in estate, gift, trust, and individual taxation. As a member of the Tax Advisory Group, Ms. Dalen researches complicated tax issues, provides compliance reviews for tax returns and trust accountings, and analyzes and plans for the estates of high net worth individuals. She works closely with the other professionals of HBK, their clients, and the attorneys and other professionals that make up the client’s team of advisors. Prior to joining HBK, she worked for a Top 100 accounting firm in Maine preparing and reviewing complicated tax returns, providing tax planning for high net worth individuals and their businesses, and researching complicated tax issues.
Hill, Barth & King LLC has prepared this material for informational purposes only. Any tax advice contained in this communication (including any attachments) is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of (i) avoiding penalties under the Internal Revenue Code or under any state or local tax law or (ii) promoting, marketing or recommending to another party any transaction or matter addressed herein. Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions regarding the matter.