October 29, 2020

Year-End Tax Planning for 2020: RMD Changes, Tax Law Proposals and Strategies to Consider

Being nimble has seemed like a requirement for all of 2020. We have needed to be nimble with our businesses, as we pivot product or service lines to deal with the COVID pandemic. We have needed to be nimble as Congress enacted the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act relief efforts and additional guidance, requirements and implementation. It comes as no surprise that year-end tax planning will also require us to be nimble during our current economic and political environment. While our planning will evolve going into 2021, below we dig into things you can do now and year-end tax planning strategies to consider.

Take Advantage of Changes to Required Minimum Distributions

There have been two big changes to required minimum distributions (RMD) over the past 12 months. The Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement (SECURE) Act was signed into law on December 20, 2019. One aspect of the bill pushed back the age at which retirement plan participants need to take their RMDs, from 70½ to 72 years of age. This extra year-and-a-half can change the landscape of which source of income to support your lifestyle, as well as, potentially providing additional opportunities for ROTH conversions.

The second big change came with the CARES Act, which was signed into law on March 27th, 2020. One piece of this bill suspended the requirement of RMDs for the 2020 calendar year. This is a great opportunity to allow the qualified retirement account to continue to grow tax deferred.

Planning considerations:

  • Have you previously had large withholdings on your RMDs to cover your federal and state tax liabilities? Don’t forget to consider making quarterly estimated tax payments if you choose not to take your RMD in 2020.
  • Are you still planning on taking a distribution? Consider utilizing a qualified charitable deduction (QCD) to fund your charitable intentions. The distribution will not be included in income, but no additional charitable deduction is available. Typically, this strategy is still more tax advantageous.
  • Will your tax bracket significantly decrease without your normal RMD? Consider a partial ROTH IRA conversion to utilize the lower tax brackets. Additional details discussed below.

Be Aware of Proposed Tax Changes

Tax laws are always evolving at their own pace. In the current political environment, differences in tax policy are on the forefront of everyone’s mind. While it is completely uncertain when, or even if, tax law changes could be implemented, here are some current proposals on the horizon and strategies to keep in mind going into the end of the year.

  • Proposal of increasing the top individual tax rate back to 39.6% and the top corporate tax rate to 28%. The normal “defer income, accelerate expenses” may not be the best strategy depending on how everything plays out.
  • Proposal on increasing net long-term capital gains tax rate on individuals making over $1 million. The current top tax rate is 23.8% when considering the net investment income tax. The top rate under this proposal could be as high as 43.4%. Careful consideration should be taken when planning for the sale of securities and recognition of capital gains.
  • Proposal to change itemized deductions. This would likely eliminate the current $10,000 limit on state and local taxes, however, would also reinstate the limitation on itemized deductions for higher-income taxpayers. This would likely limit deductions to 28% for upper income individuals. Specific scenarios should be analyzed to determine if there is a better tax benefit under current law or proposed law when considering the timing of year-end charitable giving and fourth quarter state estimated tax payments. Many factors will come into play.
  • Proposal to change current gift and estate taxes. There are many different scenarios which could ultimately transpire: The estate tax exemption could be lowered from the current $11.58 million, to pre-Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of $5.5 million, or even lower.  There is also talk about raising the top estate tax rate from 40% to 45%, as well as the possibility of eliminating the step-up in basis to the beneficiary on inherited assets.  The time is now to re-visit estate plans and consider utilizing lifetime gift tax exemptions. 

Don’t Forget Traditional Year-End Strategies

While each individual scenario warrants specific recommendations and guidance, here are some traditional items to keep in mind before 2021.

  • Qualified Business Income (QBI), also known as the “20% Business Deduction”, is a large tax planning strategy. In order to optimize the QBI deductions, careful considerations need to take place to determine year-end bonuses or if considering accelerating or deferring income/expenses.
  • Consider contributing to 529 college savings plan. Some states may allow a deduction for contributions made in this calendar year. Missouri, for example, allows up to $8,000 per taxpayer to be contributed and deducted on their return. 
  • Consider ROTH IRA conversions to utilize lower tax brackets. Whether due to COVID, RMD suspension, or if you are just entering retirement, some individuals may find themselves in a unique situation of being in a lower than usual tax bracket. This is a prime opportunity to convert some of your traditional retirement account to a ROTH retirement account. Pay a little extra tax today but will have tax-free growth going forward.  
  • Revaluate payroll deductions. Before the last paycheck of the year, see if you should make any adjustments to your pre-tax benefits. Have you contributed enough to your retirement to maximize your company’s match? Also, if you are over 50, you are eligible for an additional $6,000 catch-up contribution. Have you maximized your health savings account (HSA)? If you are over 55, you are eligible for an additional $1,000 catch-up contribution.

While I’m sure many of us are ready to put 2020 behind us, there is still time to put some of these tax planning strategies in place before the end of the year. Contact an Anders advisor below to further discuss your tax planning options, or visit our COVID-19 Resource Center for more CARES Act considerations.

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October 27, 2020

Do Your Employees Actually Need Cybersecurity Training?

We can all agree that protecting your business and employees from data breaches is important. But is company-wide cybersecurity training necessary? Some businesses have periodic training courses along with phishing tests. Others send out a friendly reminder to employees to “be careful not to open suspicious emails”. What is enough?

The Importance of Identifying a Scammer

The probability of an employee opening a malicious email may be directly related to the amount of training they received. Let’s say your company has the friendly reminder approach with employees. Here is what happens when an employee clicks on a ransomware link:

  • Hopefully, your anti-virus and firewall has up-to-date patching to HELP prevent an attack
  • However, just clicking the link is enough to activate the sequence for the attack and many times a firewall and anti-virus cannot help you after that action
  • After that, the characteristics of the specific malware will start to deploy in your system – however, you may not notice, and the virus does not always execute immediately
  • You may feel forced to pay a ransom. The government may punish organizations who pay the ransom after a ransomware attack

Beyond ransomware, scammers are using other tactics to gain valuable information through phishing and spear-phishing attempts. By posing as a colleague, manager or other credible source, employees could be conned into:

  • Wiring an ACH payment
  • Using a personal or company card to buy a gift card or other unsuspecting errand
  • Providing their password  

Invest in the training of your human firewall. A traditional firewall cannot do it alone. Even with the best laid cybersecurity safeguards in place including backups, firewalls and software patches, it takes one click by an unknowing employee to cost your business a lot of time, money and important data.

How to Train Employees on Cybersecurity Best Practices

Now that we know the importance of cybersecurity training for employees, how can you get started? Anders Technology has cybersecurity advisors that can implement a training program for staff based on their skill level. Maybe they can already identify a suspicious link but could still be fooled by a credible-looking domain. We use a personalized approach to ensure each employee is equipped with the tools to keep themselves and the company safe from scammers.

Anders Technology can help you implement the best cybersecurity practices to protect you and your organization. Contact an Anders advisor to see how we can help you mitigate security risk and defend against a costly cyberattack.

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October 20, 2020

How Real Estate and Construction Contractors Can Avoid Overpaying Sales and Use Tax

Whether you’re a real estate broker and independent contractor or a general or sub-contractor working in construction, sales tax for contractors can be complex and difficult to understand. There are many factors that affect taxability, and real estate and construction contractors may also be subject to exemptions based on the customer and the property’s function. In this time of uncertainty with the COVID-19 pandemic affecting many businesses, sales tax refunds can help recoup over-paid sales tax and put more money in your pocket.

Are contractors exempt from sales tax?

There are many circumstances where exemptions are allowed but understanding sales tax liability for a construction contractor can be a challenge. States generally do not consider contractors to be making taxable sales, but providing tax exempt services. Contractors are typically treated as the final users and consumers of materials and supplies they use on construction contracts and are liable for sales tax on purchases of those materials and supplies used in a contract. However, many states provide special treatment for construction contracts with exempt organizations if the purchases are related to the entities’ exempt functions and activities.

When can an exemption certificate be used?

In both Missouri and Illinois, a contractor’s purchases of tangible personal property can be exempt with a flow-through exemption, provided a contractor is contracting with an exempt organization. The contractor can obtain an exemption certificatefor purchases of tangible personal property and materials used for a specific contract for the exempt entity. In Missouri, a project exemption certificate is typically needed from the exempt entity and provided to the vendor when making such purchases. Not all states allow a flow-through exemption from exempt organizations, and each state’s rules need to be reviewed individually.

In Missouri, contractors are exempt on purchases of tangible personal property for use out-of-state on a construction contract with an entity authorized to issue an exemption certificate under that state’s law. In Illinois, tangible personal property sold to contractors who resell it as tangible personal property can be treated as a purchase for resale.

Are all contracts treated the same?

Determining the structure of the contract can also impact the taxability. A lump-sum contract will generally leave the contractor responsible for the tax on materials. Whereas, with a separated contract or a cost plus contract the sale may be deemed as part property and part sale of service which may be treated differently on the contractor’s sale to their customer.

These are just a few sales tax nuances and opportunities available to contractors. A clear answer to specific questions on a state-by-state basis will need to be determined by reviewing each state’s rules and regulations. Anders has the resources and expertise to quickly help determine opportunities for you.

A sales and use tax refund review can help find overpayments to keep more money in your business’ pocket during this tough time. Anders State and Local Tax advisors have the expertise to pursue these refunds and can do so on a contingent basis. Contact an Anders advisor below for more information on reverse audits.

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October 13, 2020

How the Presidential Election Could Impact Your Taxes

As election season comes to a head, taxpayers across the country are wondering how their families and businesses could be impacted by the results. Both candidates have proposed their own versions and iterations of the tax law if the election works in their favor. Below we discuss the main provisions that would impact individuals and businesses and the points of each proposal.

Impacts on Individuals

Below are the major tax impacts on taxpayers based on each candidate’s proposal.

Impacts on Businesses

Below are the major tax impacts on businesses based on each candidate’s proposal.

Learn more about Qualified Improvement Property, Qualified Opportunity Zones or rules for Net Operating Leases.

Anders will be keeping up with tax impacts as a result of the presidential election and COVID-19. If you have any questions about year-end planning and how the tax proposals could impact you or your business, contact an Anders advisor below.  

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October 9, 2020

New Streamlined Forgiveness Application for Smaller PPP Loans

Businesses with Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans of $50,000 or less can now utilize a simpler forgiveness application. The new application, released by the SBA and U.S. Treasury, is meant to streamline the PPP loan forgiveness process for borrowers and lenders.

Details of the New Application

The new application comes out of a new interim final rule (IFR) providing guidance on forgiveness and loan review processes for PPP loans of $50,000 or less. Borrowers with affiliates that received loans totaling $2 million or more are not eligible to use the new application. Under the IFR, eligible loan borrowers are exempted from any reductions in forgiveness based on:

  • Reductions in full-time equivalent (FTE) employees
  • Reductions in employee salary or wages, and

According to the IFR, of the 5.2 million PPP loans approved by the SBA, about 3.57 million, or $62 billion of the $525 billion, were for $50,000 or less.

Good News for Businesses with Smaller PPP Loans

For borrowers with PPP loans less than $50,000, this is good news as they are not required to perform complicated FTE or salary reduction calculations. Borrowers of $50,000 or less still will have to make some certifications and provide documentation to the lender for payroll and nonpayroll costs.

Before deciding to move forward with the new application, make sure to check with your bank on if and when they are starting to accept applications. View the instructions for completing Form 3508S or the Form 3508S application.

Legislation is continuing to evolve and it’s important to keep up with the latest rules and regulations to make sure you’re making decisions based on accurate data. Our advisors are closely following COVID-19 relief efforts and will continue to publish insights to keep you informed about potential impacts and benefits. Visit our COVID-19 Resource Center for more resources. To discuss your situation and recovery options, contact an Anders advisor below.

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October 9, 2020

Microsoft Ignite 2020: New Features Coming for Businesses

Every fall, thousands of IT professionals and Microsoft experts from around the world gather for the annual Microsoft Ignite conference. Ignite provides an opportunity for Microsoft to showcase products and services and announce upcoming changes and improvements. This year’s feature enhancements align seamlessly with Anders Technology’s approach to flexible, secure and cost-effective technology.

The major themes of Ignite 2020 were agility and resilience. Modern organizations need the ability to swiftly pivot and respond to new business opportunities, while maintaining business operations in the face of challenges that we could not have imagined a year ago. As a Microsoft Gold Partner, Anders had several of our engineers attend the all-virtual Ignite 2020 conference to better understand Microsoft’s roadmap and help our clients navigate the complex Microsoft environment. Below we dive into Microsoft’s upcoming changes and improvements to look forward to.

Enhancements to Microsoft Teams

With the increased reliance on remote work, businesses now rely on Teams and Teams Calling more than ever. Big changes are coming to Teams that will enable better collaboration and flexibility.

Together Mode

The biggest announcement in the Teams space is called Together Mode.  Together Mode places all video meeting participants together in a virtual onscreen space, like a conference room or a coffee shop, so that everyone in the meeting looks like they’re in the same room together. This new format has a profound impact on group cohesion during a video conference. Together Mode makes it easier for participants to process and understand nonverbal cues like gestures and eye contact while videoconferencing.

Teams Recaps

Microsoft also announced Teams Recaps.  After a meeting, participants can now access meeting recordings, transcripts, chat and shared files directly from their Outlook calendar. If you miss a meeting, forget what was said, or just want to refer back, the entire meeting can be available from your Outlook calendar.

Presenter Mode and Live Reactions

Microsoft is adding Presenter Mode and Live Reactions to meetings. Presenter Mode allows a Teams meeting presenter to superimpose him or herself over a slide deck so that participants can see both the presenter and the slides. Live Reactions already exists in Microsoft Live Events, but previously had not been available in Teams meetings. This functionality allows participants to nonverbally react to a meeting event with an emoji, allowing presenters and participants to maintain a sense of the room.

Breakout Rooms

Another major Teams feature announcement is Breakout Rooms, coming in early Q4 2020.  Meeting hosts will be able to create breakout rooms that participants can use for smaller group discussion, enabling meeting participants to organize and formalize side activities in a more productive format. Once the breakout activity is complete, hosts can then call the participants back to the larger group. Microsoft has placed Breakout Rooms on their roadmap for October 2020 for the standard and web Teams clients, and December 2020 for the Android client.

PowerBI Integration

Microsoft has announced enhancements to the PowerBI Teams app that will integrate almost all of the PowerBI feature set into Teams. Further, they announced a new PowerBI Professional Per-User licensing scheme. Previously, premium PowerBI features were only available at the organizational level, with entry level pricing at several thousand dollars per month. Going forward, organizations will be able to license PowerBI Premium features at the user level, allowing for much smaller engagements at a much lower cost.

Security Announcements

Windows Defender is part of a comprehensive cloud-based security suite called Defender Advanced Threat Protection (ATP). At Ignite 2019, Microsoft announced better medium-sized business licensing schemes for Defender ATP. At Ignite 2020, Microsoft announced that starting in Q4 2020, new Defender Antivirus (AV) capabilities will be added to the Microsoft 365 Business Premium licensing. This means that if your organization is already paying for Business Premium, you will be able to get advanced, automated, cloud-based antivirus for little or no extra licensing cost.

Microsoft HealthCare Cloud

Microsoft’s HealthCare Cloud is its first cloud offering built from the ground up for a specific industry. HealthCare Cloud is designed to integrate Azure, Microsoft 365, and Dynamics 365 for fully native compliance with all healthcare rules and regulations. 

In Private Preview, the Teams Electronic Health Record (EHR) connector allows clinicians to meet with patients and providers in Teams directly from the patient’s EHR. Currently, Microsoft is focusing on Epic EHR support, but other systems will be supported soon.

Azure Enhancements

Azure Communication Services bring communications APIs from the Teams stack into your Azure apps. This allows your organization to utilize Teams voice, video, and telephone features from within your own homegrown applications. 

The significant depth and breadth of new features and services announced at Ignite 2020 are sure to keep IT professionals busy until Ignite 2021. Anders Technology advisors strive to always stay ahead of what’s new in the technology industry so that we can be your trusted advisor, whether your organization wants tried-and-true or cutting-edge solutions. As a Microsoft Gold Partner, we have the skills and the knowledge to meet your organization’s unique needs. Contact an Anders advisor below to discuss your situation.

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October 8, 2020

Business Interruption Grant Program Offers Pandemic Relief for Illinois Businesses

The Business Interruption Grant (BIG) is a historic recovery program for Illinois small businesses hit hardest by the ongoing pandemic. The first round of funding released $49 million in August to 2,655 small businesses across the state. Grants averaged $17,000 and were used to cover expenses such as payroll, rent, and other operational costs for small businesses in economically distressed areas.

Round Two

The second round of BIG will provide more than $200 million to heavily impacted industries and disproportionately impacted areas. The Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) has pledged that at least half of all remaining funds, totaling more than $100 million, will be reserved for businesses in downstate and rural communities of Illinois.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Must be an independently owned and operated for-profit corporation or limited liability corporation, partnership, or sole proprietorship authorized to conduct business in the State of Illinois; OR a 501c3, 501c6, or 501c19 nonprofit;
  • Must have been operating for at least three months prior to March 2020;
  • Must have had less than $20 million in revenue in calendar year 2019, or a pro-rated amount if in operation for less than a year prior to March 2020;
  • Must have experienced operating losses since March 21, 2020;
  • Must have been closed or had reduced operations due to government orders, public health guidelines, or depressed consumer demand during the COVID 19 pandemic;
  • Must have complied with all relevant laws, regulations, and executive orders from the State and federal government, including the social distancing guidelines as promulgated by the Executive Orders of the Illinois Governor

Deadline

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until all funds are exhausted. Access the BIG application here.

This is a brief summary of the Business Interruption Grant (BIG). Contact an Anders advisor below for more details on applying, eligibility and other information.  Our advisors are closely following COVID-19 relief efforts and will continue to publish insights to keep you informed about potential business impacts and benefits. Visit our COVID-19 Resource Center for more news, tools and insights you need to know in these uncertain times.

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October 7, 2020

Selling Your Business? SBA Clarifies Change of Ownership Rules for PPP Loan Borrowers

Many businesses have received and benefitted from Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan funding during the pandemic, but the rules on loan forgiveness have continued to evolve. On October 2, the SBA published a Procedural Notice regarding “change of ownership” in the event that a PPP loan is still outstanding at the time of the sale of a business. It was obvious from the loan documentation that was originally signed, that the sale of a business would be problematic while the loan was still outstanding. Borrowers and advisors have been anxiously awaiting clarification. Highlighted below are the primary areas that were defined.

How does the SBA define “change of ownership”?

The SBA defines a change of ownership in a business when one of the following occurs:

  1. At least 20% of the common stock or other ownership interest of a PPP borrower, including a publicly traded entity, is sold or otherwise transferred, whether in one or more transactions, including to an affiliate or an existing owner of the entity                                                                     
  2. The PPP borrower sells or otherwise transfers at least 50% of its assets, measured by fair market value, whether in one or more transactions
  3. The PPP borrower is merged with or into another entity

When is SBA approval required?

SBA approval is required on all sale transactions, with the exception of any of the following situations where only lender approval is necessary:

  1. The PPP loan is fully satisfied, which means the loan is either:
  2. Paid in full; or 
  3. Forgiven by the SBA (i.e., the SBA has remitted payment to the lender) and any unforgiven amounts are paid in full.
  • In a stock sale or merger:
  • A sale or transfer of less than 50% of the borrower’s common stock or other ownership; or
  • The PPP borrower completes a loan forgiveness application reflecting its use of all loan proceeds and submits it to the lender and puts in an interest-bearing escrow account controlled by the PPP lender funds equal to the outstanding balance of the PPP loan.
  • In an asset sale of 50% or more of the borrower’s assets, if the PPP borrower completes a loan forgiveness application reflecting its use of all loan proceeds and submits it to the lender and puts in an interest-bearing escrow account controlled by the PPP lender funds equal to the outstanding balance of the PPP loan.

What is the borrower required to do prior to the sale?

Prior to the closing of any change of ownership transaction, the PPP borrower must notify the lender in writing of the transaction and provide the lender with a copy of the relevant transaction documents necessary to effectuate the proposed transaction. The lender is required to submit certain documentation regarding the transaction to the SBA within five business days of the completion of the transaction.

Despite the occurrence of a change of ownership, the PPP borrower remains responsible for:

  1. Continued performance of all obligations under the PPP loan;
  2. Certifications made under the PPP loan application, including the certification of economic necessity; and
  3. Continued compliance with all other PPP loan requirements.

The PPP borrower continues to be responsible for obtaining, preparing, and retaining all required forms and documentation and providing these forms and documents to the PPP lender, servicer, or SBA upon request.

The new owners are liable for any unauthorized uses of PPP loan proceeds by the new owner.  If the new owner also had a PPP loan, the PPP loan funds must be segregated and properly allocated among the two borrowers.

Where do we go from here?

Although many questions were answered in this most recent guidance, there is much still that remains unanswered, including:

  • How can I speed up the process if pending M&A activity is imminent?
  • What happens if the bank allowed a sale to already happen prior to the new guidance?
  • What recourse do I have if my bank isn’t accepting applications yet?
  • Who is responsible if SBA reviews a loan years later and nullifies some or all of the forgiveness?

Read the full SBA Procedural Notice.

Open and upfront communication with your bank and/or advisors is critical prior to any transaction. Legislation is continuing to evolve and it’s important to keep up with the latest rules and regulations to make sure you’re making decisions based on accurate data. Our advisors are closely following COVID-19 relief efforts and will continue to publish insights to keep you informed about potential impacts and benefits. Visit our COVID-19 Resource Center for more resources. To discuss your situation and recovery options, contact an Anders advisor below.

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October 6, 2020

Harnessing Microsoft Intune and Autopilot to Work Better from Anywhere

In the days of social distancing and remote working, flexibility is more important than ever. Businesses that excel at finding ways to not just work remotely, but to work better remotely have a significant advantage over their competition, both during the coronavirus pandemic and afterwards. 

Companies are now trying methods that they never would have considered a few months ago. Anders Technology has used this as an opportunity to automate processes in a remote, contact-less environment using Microsoft® Intune and Autopilot.

The Power of Microsoft Intune: Configuring Computers Remotely

Many small and medium-sized businesses rely on a small but dedicated helpdesk staff to care for their internal technology. The helpdesk performs jobs like installing new software and configuring PC settings at the user’s desk or via remote control software. With Microsoft Intune, many of these tasks can be performed completely automatically and in bulk, freeing the helpdesk staff to handle more difficult problems. 

Example Using Intune

With Intune user groups, it’s possible to roll out a mass update. For example, if you want every member of your front-line staff to get the Teams app installed wherever the user logs in. Or if you want to ensure that Acrobat Reader is always installed on all machines in your company.  With Intune, it only takes a few minutes to set it up.

It’s also possible to have personalized configurations. For example, if you want all of your C-Suite staff’s devices to be encrypted. Or if you want to force a OneDrive backup policy for all of your HR employees. These types of custom or company-wide configurations can be easily set up and managed to provide the flexibility and security you need.

The Magic of Microsoft Autopilot: Contact-Less Deployment of New Computers

In the short term, most businesses are concerned with just getting by remotely, and haven’t considered how to deploy new hardware when it may be unsafe for users to visit the office.  In the past, configuring a new PC was a long, hands-on affair that required hours of personal attention from a from a trained technician before it ever landed on a user’s desk.

Example Using Autopilot

With Microsoft Autopilot, it’s possible to deliver a brand new PC, fully customized and configured to a specific user without ever touching it. In fact, you can have the device shipped directly from the manufacturer to your business. All the user needs to do is plug it in and login, and all of their apps and files will show up. I assure you it’s not magic. It’s Microsoft Autopilot, used in conjunction with Azure and Intune technologies.

The backend configuration of Intune and Autopilot can be very complicated, but the frontend benefits are extremely valuable to businesses. As a Microsoft Gold Partner, Anders Technology has expertise and experience in these powerful technologies.  We can gauge and understand the unique needs of your business and design technology solutions that work flexibly, securely and in a cost-efficient manner. Contact an Anders advisor below to discuss your technology goals and how we can simplify your IT infrastructure by harnessing the power of Microsoft.

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October 1, 2020

Tom Helm, Jr., Brent McClure, Adam Prest and Erin Prest to be Named Anders Partners

Anders is proud to announce that Thomas S. Helm, Jr., CPA, MBA, Brent E. McClure, CPA, MBA, CEPA, Adam S. Prest, CPA and Erin E. Prest, CPA, PFS are being named partners of the firm, effective January 2021.

About Tom Helm, Jr.

Tom joined the firm in 2005. Throughout his career, he has worked within the Audit and Assurance practice, performing and leading financial statement audits. Tom is an active member of the firm’s Not-for-Profit and Manufacturing and Distribution Groups and has worked on client audits in a broad range of industries, including manufacturing, hospitality and not-for-profit organizations. Tom also performs SOC 1 and SOC 2 audits to help companies get a handle on the internal controls and cybersecurity of their service providers.

A Certified Public Accountant (CPA) in the State of Missouri, Tom earned an MBA and B.S. in Accountancy from Missouri State University. He is an active member in the Missouri Society of Certified Public Accountants (MOCPA) and the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA). Tom is also a graduate of the leadership program Rainmaker Academy and a member of the National Tooling & Machining Association.

Learn more about Tom Helm, Jr.

About Brent McClure

Brent joined the firm in 2015 and quickly got to work building the firm’s Business Transition Planning practice. Brent works with high net worth individuals and small businesses on their tax, trust and succession planning needs. With over 25 years of experience, Brent enjoys helping clients manage their financials so they can focus on the areas of business that are most important to them. Finding hidden tax credits and benefits to save clients money is something Brent is passionate about.

Brent is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) in the State of Missouri, a Certified Exit Planning Advisor (CEPA) and holds certifications in Exit Planning and Value Building. He earned an MBA from the University of Houston, a B.A. in Finance from the University of Northern Iowa and an MHA Certificate from Des Moines University. Brent is a graduate of the Rainmaker Academy leadership program, a member of the national chapter of the Exit Planning Institute and the Membership Vice-President of the St. Louis chapter. He is also an active member in the Missouri Society of Certified Public Accountants (MOCPA) and the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA).

Learn more about Brent McClure.

About Adam Prest

Adam joined the firm as a tax intern in 2004, working his way up the ranks to partner. Throughout his career, he has worked with closely-held businesses and their owners on tax planning and cash flow forecasting. He advises small and mid-size businesses, including many in the hospitality, real estate and professional services industries. Adam is leading the firm’s efforts in expanding expertise and service offerings for businesses in the cannabis industry following the legalization of medical marijuana in Missouri. He also enjoys helping individuals and families lower their tax liability and plan for their financial future through retirement planning. At the firm, Adam played a key role in establishing the Anders Young Professionals Group, and serves on many strategic committees within the firm.

Adam is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) in the State of Missouri and earned a B.B.A. in Accounting from McKendree University. He is a graduate of the Rainmaker Academy leadership program, an active volunteer of Fair Saint Louis and held leadership positions in the Missouri Society of Certified Public Accountants (MOCPA) and the Leading Edge Alliance Young Professionals Special Interest Group. Adam is also a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) and was named a 2010 30 Under 30 by the St. Louis Business Journal and a Top Accountant by the St. Louis Small Business Monthly.

Learn more about Adam Prest.

About Erin Prest

Thanks to her experience working with corporate executives, families and business owners on individual and corporate tax planning, Erin was selected to help develop the Anders Family Wealth and Estate Planning practice. Since beginning her career at the firm in 2003, she has worked with families and individuals on individual and corporate tax planning, wealth transfers, stock option planning and business transition planning. Erin also has extensive experience in the preparation of tax returns for public charities and private foundations.

Erin is a Certified Public Accountant in the State of Missouri and earned the Personal Financial Specialist (PFS) credential from the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA). She earned an M.A.S. and B.S. in Accountancy from University of Illinois. Erin currently serves on the board of the Estate Planning Council of St. Louis and the English Tutoring Project and is a member of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners. Two highlights of her career are being named to St. Louis Business Journal’s 30 Under 30 and an MOCPA Women to Watch Emerging Leader.

Learn more about Erin Prest.

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