Francetic Tax Resolution LLC - November 2019

NOVEMBER 2019

262-752-6992

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A SALUTE TO THE MOUSE

Remembering the Disney Classics My Kids Loved on Mickey Mouse Day

These days Disney is an empire that has made billions and courted controversy, but once upon a time, it was just The Mouse House, home to Mickey and crew and a host of beautifully illustrated cartoons. When I realized that Nov. 18 is Mickey Mouse Day — designated to celebrate Mickey’s 1928 debut in “Steamboat Willie” — I knew I wanted to dedicate this newsletter to the Disney cartoons of the ‘90s that my sons were raised on (and obsessed with). My son Clinton is 27 now, but, back when he was a sunny 6-year-old, he was hooked on “The Lion King.” We must have watched it together 75 or 100 times — enough to wear out three VHS tapes. For months, he wanted to watch it every day! It was the first thing he asked for every morning when he woke up, and when I agreed, watching it with him was a rollercoaster. Considering the movie is based on Shakespeare’s “Hamlet,” it’s no surprise it has its emotional ups and downs. Little Clinton would get so sad every time Mufasa was trampled in the wildebeest stampede even though he’d seen it dozens of times before. Luckily, that tearful mood would only last until Timone and Pumba appeared on screen and cracked a joke. It’s a great feel-good movie overall, and, even though I got burned out on it at the time, now I look back on those mornings in front of the TV as great memories. One not-so-great Disney memory came a bit later in 1998 when my family made a trip to Disney World in Orlando. The trip itself was fantastic, but the trouble came when we were getting ready to hop on the plane to head home and 6-year-old Clinton was stopped by airport

security. It turned out he’d slipped a little plastic knife we’d bought him as a souvenir from a “Pirates of the Caribbean”-themed boat ride into this backpack, and was trying to take it on the plane! This was before 9/11, but even then, nothing that looked like a weapon got the green light, no matter how cute its 6-year-old owner was. We had to leave it behind, and Clinton was inconsolable. Thankfully, we had our worn-out copy of “The Lion King” at home to cheer him up. When my now 17-year-old son Elliot came along, he was more into Pixar than Disney though they collaborated on his two favorites: “Toy Story” and “Finding Nemo.” I have to say, I loved the “Toy Story” movies almost as much as he did and still do! I appreciate the adult humor they slip in that little kids won’t get, and in the end, they’re just great stories. I watch them whenever they come on TV and even went to see the fourth

movie twice in theaters. If you haven’t seen it yet, I won’t spoil the ending for you, but let’s just say it’s not what you’d expect! Funnily enough, both my sons got their names in part from Hollywood: Clinton from Clint Eastwood, and Elliot from the main character in the movie “E.T.,” which my ex-wife and I loved. Considering “E.T.” is a Disney movie, I guess I have a lot to thank the mouse for beyond just good memories! Next time you call me up for tax advice or help to get out of a snag with the IRS, let me know what your favorite Disney movie is — I’m always ready to talk cartoons.

Paul Francetic

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GET MORE BANK FOR YOUR BUCK

HOW TO TAKE FULL ADVANTAGE OF YOUR FINANCIAL INSTITUTION

1. GET CLICKING Even for someone with plenty of internet savvy, bank websites can be intimidating. Most are filled with tabs and portals that overwhelm customers, causing them to limit their interactions to plugging in a username and password to check their balance. Don’t fall into that trap! If you want to get a complete picture of what your bank has to offer, its website is the place to start. Next time you log in, set aside an hour or two to explore the site tab by tab. Take note of products and services you might not be using, like mobile banking apps, 24-hour hotlines, continuing education, and additional account options and their interest rates. Schwab, for example, offers a free online learning center complete with seminars, one-on-one financial advice, and more than 300 informative articles and videos. Not only is Michelle Christensen one of the most hardworking, dedicated insurance agents I know but she has also been a great client over the years. Michelle got her start in insurance working with her father, Chuck Christensen, at his State Farm agency in Kenosha. She eventually got her own State Farm agency in Racine. Michelle’s father was one of my first tax clients when I started my accounting and tax business in 2004. I started doing Michelle’s tax returns when she realized her accountant was missing things. For example, he neglected to talk to her about important considerations like retirement planning and money-saving strategies for people who are self-employed. In my time working with Michelle, I’ve saved her over $100,000 in taxes by taking those things into account. Taking away that stress has helped her focus on building her business, which regularly gets five-star reviews. One customer wrote on Google, “Her staff is so professional and friendly, and they take time to explain any questions you may have. Michelle covers most of our insurance needs, from

2. SCHEDULE A SIT-DOWN If your bank has a brick-and-mortar location near you, make a point to visit it. While there, take the time to learn about the latest updates from the reading materials on offer, make an appointment with a financial analyst, or speak with a bank teller. It’s in your bank’s interest to see your accounts grow, so representatives are happy to help. If you’ve already explored your bank’s website, this is the time to ask follow-up questions on what you found or make a financial move in a new direction. Whether you’ve decided on a 529 plan or a high-interest checking account, your banking representative can make it happen.

Whether you’re banking with a credit union or a national giant, your financial institution likely offers more resources, account options, and saving plans than you’re using — or even aware of. As one NerdWallet article puts it, “Banks and credit unions continue to find new ways to both delight and confound customers.” If you focus on the delights, you can get more bang for your buck out of the financial institution you’re already using. Plus, there’s a good chance you’ll pick up new ways to stretch your retirement fund, grow your investments, and pass nest eggs to your grandkids along the way. Take these two easy steps to get started.

CLIENT SPOTLIGHT: STATE FARM AGENT MICHELLE CHRISTENSEN

A Second-Generation Customer and Friend

auto to homeowners, and we are very satisfied with her team,” and another wrote, “Michelle is just the best agent I know.” Over the years I’ve known her, Michelle has become a friend as well as a client. I offer house calls to make the lives of my busy clients a bit easier, and I’ve often stopped by Michelle’s home to drop off tax returns. Her daughter, Kinsley, who’s a star in gymnastics, has treated me to a balance beam routine in their dining room converted into a gymnastics room! I always appreciate being welcomed into my clients’ homes and value building relationships with them that go beyond the numbers on the tax returns. While some tax accountants try to shuffle people in and out as fast as possible, I’ve found that when I know my clients well, I can better tailor my advice to their circumstances. To learn more about Michelle’s insurance agency, visit MyRacineAgent.com. If you’re self-employed and want to save money on your taxes, give me a call at 262-752-6992. I’d be happy to help you just like I’ve helped Michelle.

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FTR TAX TIP OF THE MONTH

DON’T NEGLECT YOUR MAIL!

This month’s tip is simple: Open all your mail. This may seem like common sense, but, in my experience, plenty of people go weeks or even months without opening letters from the IRS or state either because they forget them in the pile of junk mail on the counter or because they’re afraid they’ll carry nothing but bad news. This is a poor choice. If left untended, the IRS and state will garnish your wages or levy your bank account in order to recoup the taxes they are owed. However, if you open your mail right away and engage the services of a taxpayer representation expert like me, you’ll have time to appeal and work out another payment method. An appeal puts the whole process on hold, setting you up for a good outcome like an Offer in Compromise (you won’t have to pay the full amount owed), gaining “currently not collectible” status (collections will stop until you have the ability to pay), or a properly structured full or partial pay installment agreement. Here’s an extreme example of notices gone wrong. In October of 2018, a guy called me up and told me he had a tax problem. As usual, I asked him to stop by my office and to bring any mail from the IRS and state with him. A few days later he showed up with a big box. In it were 67 envelopes, all unopened!! Some of them dated back more than a year. Several were certified, meaning he’d have had to sign for them, but even those were unopened. When I started tearing into them, I found out that the IRS had threatened to levy his bank account multiple times before they actually levied his account on two occasions. This wouldn’t have happened if he’d opened his mail and come to me sooner. Please don’t wait to take action until it’s too late. Open your mail, and be proactive with your tax problems. Not only is there a good chance you’ll save money, but you’ll also make a good impression on the IRS, and save yourself being labeled a problem taxpayer. If you’re facing a mounting pile of letters, opened or unopened, and aren’t sure what to do with them, give Francetic Tax Resolution a call today. No matter how far gone the situation is, I can usually do something to help.

THE BEST LEFTOVER TURKEY SANDWICH

Thanksgiving may be held on Thursday, but the food often lasts at least through the weekend. To make the best use of the excess, grill up some killer turkey sandwiches.

INGREDIENTS

• • • • •

2 slices sourdough bread 2 tbsp Dijon mustard 2 slices Swiss cheese

1/3 cup leftover dressing or stuffing

• •

2 tbsp leftover gravy

1/3 cup shredded leftover turkey 3 tbsp leftover cranberry sauce

1 tbsp butter, room temperature

Note: Don’t worry if you don’t have all the leftovers required.

DIRECTIONS

1. Coat inside of each bread slice with mustard and a slice of cheese. Place turkey and cranberry sauce on one slice and dressing and gravy on the other. 2. Combine sandwich and spread butter on both sides. 3. In a panini maker or large skillet, grill until crispy and golden brown. 4. Slice and serve.

Inspired by FoodNetwork.com

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5429 DEERFIELD ROAD MOUNT PLEASANT, WI 53406-1919

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1 2 A Salute to the Mouse How to Get More From Your Bank Client Spotlight: State Farm Agent Michelle Christensen FTR Tax Tip of the Month The Best Leftover Turkey Sandwich The Gift of Giving INSIDE 3

Listen to Paul Saturday Mornings 7 a.m. on AM channel 1050 WLIP or stream online at www.WLIP.com!

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SUPPORTING THE PEOPLE YOU BELIEVE IN CELEBRATING GIVING TUESDAY

November is usually all about Thanksgiving, but it isn’t the only holiday that encourages generosity. Giving Tuesday is a phenomenal celebration in which millions of people from across the globe are inspired to spend 24 hours giving back to the communities they love. ORIGIN AND GOAL Giving Tuesday is celebrated every year on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving, and this year, the holiday lands on Dec. 3! It was established in 2012 by the United Nations Foundation and New York’s 92nd Street Y as a response to consumer-driven holidays like Black Friday and Cyber Monday. The purpose of the holiday was to spread the spirit of giving, not only for the people in our nation but individuals across the world. The goal is “to create a massive wave of generosity that lasts well beyond that day and touches every person on the planet.” TECHNOLOGY AT ITS BEST Through the use of social media and technology, the organization hopes to encourage and spread generosity on a global scale using the

hashtag #GivingTuesday. The website states that “... technology and social media could be used to make generosity go viral; that people fundamentally want to give and talk about giving.” Through massive social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter, the individuals and companies participating in Giving Tuesday can spread their missions and messages all over the world, encouraging others to do the same. HOW YOU CAN CELEBRATE Now is the perfect opportunity to support your community and the causes you believe in. The best part of this holiday is that “giving” doesn’t just refer to donating money. People can give back by volunteering their time to help a nonprofit business, donating goods and food, or just buying a stranger some lunch. Even the smallest actions can have the biggest impact. If you’re interested in participating in Giving Tuesday, get together with your friends, family, sports team members, or neighbors to brainstorm on how you can give back. To learn more about how you can participate, visit GivingTuesday.org .

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