As you know, retirement accounts are more than just a way for your self-employed clients to plan for a secure future. They’re also a powerful tax deferral tool. And they’re an important revenue opportunity for your firm.
UltraTax CS Data Mining makes it easy for you to identify the clients who may benefit from retirement planning, then contact them to offer planning services. You can even include a message about retirement planning in an existing communication, like a reminder to pay their next estimated tax payment (which, by the way, you can also produce using UltraTax CS Data Mining).
Below, I’ve outlined the steps for creating a custom report that lists key information for clients that fit this profile. The steps below will find all employees who have self-employment income. If you prefer, you could modify the report slightly to find only employees with employment income above a given threshold.
I’ve also described how to use the Client Letter and Search functions to generate a letter or email to send to the clients you find with the search.
Building the custom report listing self-employment income for the taxpayer and/or spouse
- Open UltraTax CS and select Utilities > Data Mining.
- Select 1040 Individual and click the Continue (Step 2) button.
- Click the Design Custom Reports button near the top-right.
- Click the Add button to add a new custom report.
- Enter a title for the report, such as “Self-employment income,” select the 1040 Client List w/Invoices template, and click Continue.
- Select the pre-added columns for Letter, Client invoice number, and Net invoice amount and click Remove to delete them. This will free up space to add a new column for self-employment income.
- Change the Product drop-down at the top left to Federal.
- Select over the following values to be included in the report:
- Sch SE, Net Earnings (Tp)
- Sch SE, Net Earnings (Sp)
- Click OK to save the report, then Done to exit the custom report listing.
Selecting the pre-defined tax planning letter and search criteria for self-employed persons
UltraTax CS Data Mining includes pre-defined search criteria and a pre-written client letter that you can use to find and contact self-employed clients. Follow the steps below, run the search, and generate a letter.
- In the list of reports, select over the self-employment income report that you created earlier.
- Change the drop-down at the top-left from Reports to Letters.
- Select over the letter titled “Self-employed Individual.”
This letter includes recommendations concerning self-employed retirement plans. It also makes other tax strategy recommendations, such as the deduction of self-employed health insurance premiums and the benefits of a health savings account.
- From the Search name drop-down list in the middle of the window, select the search titled “Self-employed retirement plan candidates.”
This identifies all clients with self-employments earnings who are not claiming a self-employed retirement deduction on Form 1040, Line 28.
- Click Continue (Step 3).
- In step 3 of data mining, select your letter in the Print what dialog.
- Select your distribution method in the Print where dialog. You can:
- Print paper copies
- Have UltraTax CS automatically email PDFs to clients with an email on file
- Have UltraTax CS automatically email PDFs to clients with an email on file and print paper copies for clients who do not
- Once you’ve chosen your distribution method, click Print. UltraTax CS will use your MAPI-compliant default email client to email PDF copies of the notification, and/or print paper copies.
Come back on August 19 for my next blog entry, where I’ll show you how to use UltraTax CS Data Mining to find clients who file a 1040 Schedule C, yet aren’t claiming the Domestic Production Activities deduction. Until then, feel free to post your questions and comments below.