Monarch Golf & Country Club Hosts Palm City Chamber of Commerce October Monthly Breakfast

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Palm City – On Wednesday, October 28, 2020 The Palm City Chamber of Commerce had their October Monthly Breakfast. The October Breakfast was attended by approximately 70 attendees. Attendees all wore masks before breakfast was served.

Monarch Golf & Country Club did an outstanding job catering for the members, serving a nice breakfast.

They are located at: 1801 SW. Monarch Club Drive, Palm City. Monarch Golf & Country Club is located in Palm City with the great tradition of Southern golf courses, Arnold Palmer was given free reign to create the ideal course. Enhancing the natural beauty of Monarch with its ideal location, exceptional amenities and gracious service.

Sponsor for the breakfast was Arati Hammond with Keller Williams of the Treasure Coast. Ms. Hammond gave her views and a power point presentation of the real estate market in the area. She is located in Palm City.  Call her at 772-342-5599.

Congressman Brian Mast was also a speaker at the breakfast and gave an overview of what is going on in Martin County and our waterways. Several questions were asked by members.

The Palm City Chamber of Commerce strives to promote the continuous improvement of the common good and the quality of life in the community through the pursuit of new business. They are located in Palm City at 3168 SW Martin Downs Blvd. Contact them at: 772-286-8121.

Out2News is your Treasure Coast online newspaper where you are the reporter, photographer and YOU report the news! Do you have something to say, an event to a talk about? An event you would like us to have covered. If you wish a high resolution photo or would like to email your story or request to: rshall@out2martincounty.com.

Photo by: Courtesy of Robin Hall-Out2News.com

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"Your Treasure Coast Newspaper & Photo Journal"

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20 Oct Kiwanis Logo

Skin Serenity Spa Hosts Stuart Martin County Chamber of Commerce October Breakfast

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In Photo: Jeff Sabin - Waste Management and Trustee Cathleen Owen - Loving Chiropractic of Stuart

Jensen Beach– On Tuesday, October 20, 2020 The Stuart Martin County Chamber of Commerce had their monthly breakfast. Approximately 40 members attended

The sponsor for the breakfast was Candace Lopes owner of Skin Serenity Spa. Candace and her staff pay close attention to each of their clients. Skin Serenity Spa is your retreat in Stuart. They promise that their services are both unique and therapeutic to create the perfect symmetry of a Zen-like atmosphere and the well-being you seek. With their personal touch and exceptional treatments, Skin Serenity Spa makes it your ultimate destination. Their personal touch and exceptional treatments make Skin Serenity Spa your ultimate destination. They are located at: 740 S Colorado Ave, Stuart. Call them at 772.600.8613.

Stuart/Martin County Chamber of Commerce plays a significant role in the growth, business climate and economy of our area. Martin is one of the most respected counties in the state. The programs and activities of the Chamber are vital to our lifestyle. The Chamber is proud of the benefits and services we provide to Martin County and our 1,400 plus members. The Stuart/Martin County Chamber of Commerce is a member of the countywide Council of Chambers, an organization consisting of the five county Chambers of Commerce, formed to discuss common issues, provide unified effort in speaking out to represent business interests of the area.  They are in Stuart at 1650 S. Kanner Highway. For more information contact them at: 772-287-1088.

Out2News/Out2martincounty.com is a photo journal featuring people, “Who they are, what they do and where they do it”.

Do you have something to say, an event to talk about? An event you would like to have covered. Do it here!

Photos by Sue Hedgepath – Stuart/Martin County Chamber of Commerce

Email your story or request to: rshall@out2martincounty.com

Out2News LLC. adheres to full compliance with C.O.P.P.A. (Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998)

20 Oct SMC Breakfast 2

In Photo: New members Robbin and Kurt Kruel - Klass Act Solutions, LLC and Chamber President/CEO Joe Catrambone.

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In Photo: Chamber Trustees Cheree Ramirez - Sky Blue Aviation and Gary Owen - Owen Insurance Group

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In Photo: Chamber Trustee Chris Smith - Photographics, New member Jeanne Knight - Cruise Planners

20 Oct SMC Breakfast 5

In Photo: Colleen Schramm and Kerry Caruso - Tootsie’s Shoes Pedicures & More

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In Photo: Steve Klaassen - Colorado Pawn & Jewelry, Antonio Torres - GFA International, Inc.

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In Photo: Chamber Trustee Debbi Greer - Boys & Girls Club of Martin County,Jeanne Knight - Cruise Planners, Diana Miret - The Business Profit Coach

Year-End 2020 Tax Tips

20 Oct 2020 Tax Tips

Here are some things to consider as you weigh potential tax moves before the end of the year.

Defer income to next year
Consider opportunities to defer income to 2021, particularly if you think you may be in a lower tax bracket then. For example, you may be able to defer a year-end bonus or delay the collection of business debts, rents, and payments for services in order to postpone payment of tax on the income until next year.

Accelerate deductions
Look for opportunities to accelerate deductions into the current tax year. If you itemize deductions, making payments for deductible expenses such as medical expenses, qualifying interest, and state taxes before the end of the year (instead of paying them in early 2021) could make a difference on your 2020 return.

Make deductible charitable contributions
If you itemize deductions on your federal income tax return, you can generally deduct charitable contributions, but the deduction is limited to 60%, 30%, or 20% of your adjusted gross income (AGI), depending on the type of property that you give and the type of organization to which you contribute. (Excess amounts can be carried over for up to five years.) For 2020 charitable gifts, the normal rules have been enhanced: The limit is increased to 100% of AGI for direct cash gifts to public charities. And even if you don't itemize deductions, you can receive a $300 charitable deduction for direct cash gifts to public charities (in addition to the standard deduction).

Bump up withholding
If it looks as though you're going to owe federal income tax for the year, consider increasing your withholding on Form W-4 for the remainder of the year to cover the shortfall. The biggest advantage in doing so is that withholding is considered as having been paid evenly throughout the year instead of when the dollars are actually taken from your paycheck.

20 Oct 2020 Tax Tips 2

Maximize retirement savings
Deductible contributions to a traditional IRA and pre-tax contributions to an employer-sponsored retirement plan such as a 401(k) can reduce your 2020 taxable income. If you haven't already contributed up to the maximum amount allowed, consider doing so. For 2020, you can contribute up to $19,500 to a 401(k) plan ($26,000 if you're age 50 or older) and up to $6,000 to traditional and Roth* IRAs combined ($7,000 if you're age 50 or older). The window to make 2020 contributions to an employer plan generally closes at the end of the year, while you have until April 15, 2021, to make 2020 IRA contributions. (*Roth contributions are not deductible, but Roth qualified distributions are not taxable.)

Avoid RMDs in 2020
Normally, once you reach age 70½ (age 72 if you reach age 70½ after 2019), you generally must start taking required minimum distributions (RMDs) from traditional IRAs and employer-sponsored retirement plans. Distributions are also generally required to beneficiaries after the death of the IRA owner or plan participant. However, recent legislation has waived RMDs from IRAs and most employer retirement plans for 2020 and you don't have to take such distributions. If you have already taken a distribution for 2020 that is not required, you may be able to roll it over to an eligible retirement plan.

Weigh year-end investment moves
Though you shouldn't let tax considerations drive your investment decisions, it's worth considering the tax implications of any year-end investment moves. For example, if you have realized net capital gains from selling securities at a profit, you might avoid being taxed on some or all of those gains by selling losing positions. Any losses above the amount of your gains can be used to offset up to $3,000 of ordinary income ($1,500 if your filing status is married filing separately) or carried forward to reduce your taxes in future years.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Out2News. Any content provided by our bloggers or authors are of their opinion, and are not intended to malign any religion, ethic group, club, organization, company, individual or anyone or anything.

Martin County Expands CARES Act Funding to Nonprofits

19 July MC Commissioners logo

Stuart –This week the Martin County Board of County Commissioners made CARES Act funds available to additional organizations to assist our community in recovery efforts from the COVID-19 pandemic. Local nonprofit community agencies may now apply for a one-time relief grant. Interested parties should visit www.martin.fl.us/CARESAct for more information.

“Due to the widespread impact of the pandemic, we see an incredible need in our community,” Assistant County Administrator George M. Stokus said. “Extending funding to these nonprofit partner agencies helps them expand programs and services, strengthening families throughout Martin County.”

NEW! Community Partner Relief Program
Nonprofit agencies including nonprofit cultural facilities, nonprofit medical services providers, nonprofit veterans organizations and 501c6 associations impacted by COVID-19 are encouraged to apply for assistance to continue providing important services to individuals and families in Martin County. Visit www.martin.fl.us/CommunityPartnerRelief for more information.

The Business Renewal Program helps small businesses with $5 million or less in total gross sales or receipts with a maximum award of $20,000 per applicant, subject to funding availability. To find detailed information on this program, visit www.martin.fl.us/BusinessRenewal. For questions, please call 772-288-5951 or email sbrc@martin.fl.us.

Martin County's CARES Act Housing Program is designed to meet the housing needs of low-income households in Martin County. Eligible expenses include rent and/or mortgage payments and certain emergency repairs, due to job loss, furlough or work hour reductions. To apply for funding under this program, visit www.martin.fl.us/housingprogram. For questions please call 772-288-5456.

United We Care: Martin County's COVID-19 Relief Fund is a partnership between the county and United Way of Martin County. This program provides one-time assistance to support eligible Martin County residents with rent or mortgage payments and utility bills. Learn more at www.unitedwaymartin.org/Cares.

St. Lucie Habitat for Humanity Partners with Bank of America to Build Affordable Homes

20 Mar St Lucie Habitat Logo

Bank funding will support the construction of homes for families in need

Port St. Lucie – St. Lucie Habitat for Humanity has partnered with Bank of America to build affordable homes for local working families. For more than 30 years, Bank of America has given back to the community and engaged its employees in service by working alongside Habitat homeowners to build, improve, or repair homes throughout the world.

This year, the Bank of America Charitable Foundation presented St. Lucie Habitat for Humanity with $22,500 in funding. Despite the challenges of COVID-19, St. Lucie Habitat is still building and repairing homes, with four currently under construction and a limited number of volunteers allowed on the job site.

“Support from Bank of America helps us continue with our work and helps our Habitat homeowners become empowered to build better lives for themselves and their families,” said Melissa Winstead, Development Director, St. Lucie Habitat for Humanity.

At a time when construction costs are increasing, and Habitat’s ReStore donations and sales are down from last year, support from community partners, like Bank of America, is more impactful than ever.

“Access to affordable housing is fundamental for families and individuals to achieve financial stability,” said Doug Sherman, Treasure Coast market president for Bank of America. “Our long-term partnership with St. Lucie Habitat supports our shared goal of providing families in need with a place to call home and the ability to pursue economic prosperity and growth.”

20 Sept BAC Flyer

Twinkles Jewelry & Gifts Hosts Palm City Chamber of Commerce October Business After Hours

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Photos by: Robin Hall - Out2News

Palm City– On Thursday, October 16, 2020 The Palm City Chamber of Commerce enjoyed a Business After Hours and ribbon cutting for Twinkles Jewelry & Gifts in Palm City. The event was well attended to see a beautiful uplifting store, right in your backyard. Attendees wore masks throughout the event and wonderful refreshments & hors d'oeuvre were served.

Mother & daughter Diane Clingan and Christine Coller are the owners of this beautiful boutique. This Twinkles is an offshoot of another hometown favorite formerly called Twinkles; a Christmas Shoppe owned by Diane.

Twinkles Jewelry & Gifts is a unique boutique style gift shop with just about something for anyone.  When you walk in the store it is breathe taking and fun! No matter where you look there will be something that you want! Both Diane and Chris are Palm City residents, and they LOVE all things make you Smile....beautiful jewelry, fancy home decor, beachy stuff, pet gifts and more.  So, let them bring you into their vision of a one stop shop when you need a gift or just some retail therapy!
They are located at 1385 SW Martin Hwy or call them at 772-678-6588.

The Palm City Chamber of Commerce strives to promote the continuous improvement of the common good and the quality of life in the community through the pursuit of new business. Located in Palm City at 3168 SW Martin Downs Blvd. Contact them at: 772-286-8121.

Out2News/Out2martincounty.com is a photo journal featuring people, “Who they are, what they do and where they do it”.

Do you have something to say, an event to talk about? An event you would like to have covered. Do it here!

Photos by: Robin Hall - Out2News LLC.

Email your story or request to: rshall@out2martincounty.com

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Jensen Beach Chamber of Commerce October Luncheon Hosted by Hutchinson Shores Resort & Spa

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Photo by: Courtesy of Robin Hall-Out2News.com

On Thursday, Oct 15, 2020 the Jensen Beach Chamber of Commerce had their October Luncheon at the Hutchinson Island Shores Resort & Spa in Jensen Beach. Approximately 50 people attended the luncheon all wore masks before lunch was served. Recently voted Top 30 Resorts in Florida. Hutchinson Shores Resort & Spa is the Treasure Coast of Florida's new premier resort for family vacations, meetings, corporate retreats, oceanfront weddings, and spa getaways. Our unique Jensen Beach hotel offers 178 oceanfront accommodations with coastal-inspired decor and private balconies, along with exceptional resort amenities including a signature spa, two outdoor pools, oceanfront dining and more. They are located at 3793 NE Ocean Boulevard in Jensen Beach. For more information call them at: 772.334.1950.

Superintendent Lori Gaylord was in attendance for the luncheon. She will be retiring in November. The speaker for the Luncheon was Martin County School District. Mr. Garret Grabowski, Chief Operations Officer, who gave an overview of what the new Jensen Beach Elementary School would look like and how it would impact the Jensen Beach Community. Questions were asked by the members and a lot was learned regarding traffic entrances, the look and feel of the new school.

The Jensen Beach Chamber of Commerce stands as the advocate for the development of the business community, tourism and resource center that promotes member success." The Chamber is in downtown historic Jensen Beach. Through seminars, workshops, and monthly luncheons the Chamber provides members with many opportunities to network and enhance businesses. For more Information contact them at: (772) 334-3444.

Out2News is your Treasure Coast online newspaper where you are the reporter, photographer and YOU report the news! Do you have something to say, an event to a talk about? An event you would like us to have covered. If you wish a high-resolution photo or would like to email your story or request to: rshall@out2martincounty.com.
Photo by: Courtesy of Robin Hall-Out2News.com
Out2News.com adheres to full compliance with C.O.P.P.A. (Children's Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998)
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The Busch Family Foundation, Wild Game Dinner

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In Photo: Philip Busch & soon retiring employee Tommy Padrick

Article & Photos: MaryAnn Ketchum

The 9th Annual Wild Game Dinner saw a full-house out at the sprawling Adam’s Ranch in Fort Pierce. Hosted by the Busch Family Foundation, formerly known as the Peter W. Busch Foundation, the fundraiser expects to yield a higher than average total. With a total of over $470,000 raised and contributed to local charities in the past nine years, this year’s intake will put that number well over the half a million mark!

As a stag-only extravaganza, camaraderie, male-bonding, and a bit of ‘kicking up heels’ is the name of the game. For the price of a ticket, the gents feasted on a wide variety of specialty meats and secret-recipe dishes, wet their whistles, soaked in the country-music vibes of the Randy McNeely Band, threw a few axes, and bid on hundreds of raffle and live auction items.

Congressman Brian Mast led the crowd in a toast to “God, country and family,” followed by a heartfelt Pledge of Allegiance en masse.

President of the Busch Family Foundation and Southern Eagle Distributing, Philip Busch, recognized an outstanding member of both organizations, Tommy Padrick, who will soon retire. Of his 36-year employee and friend, Busch said, “Tommy’s been an intricate part of this event and all of the events that we help sponsor.” Padrick received a rousing round of applause for his efforts.

Thanks to sponsors Adam’s Ranch, Dobb’s Equip., Nature’s Keepers, Advantage, Bell, Earthmovers Equip., John Jacobs Construction, Land Corp. of Fl., Dyer Chevrolet, Everglades Equip., Croce Construction, Summit Construction and Sentanta Equip., and the dozens of others that stepped up, this event continues to draw more participants each year.

This past year alone, the Busch Family Foundation helped the Boys & Girls Clubs of St. Lucie and Martin Counties, Hope for the Homeless, the St. Lucie County Hundred Club, Operation 300, Honor Flight, the UDT Navy Seal Museum, The Lenny Schelin Foundation for Cancer Research, The Santia Feketa Foundation, The Britney Lee Foundation, YMCA of Martin County / Indiantown and many other local charities.

“The Busch family is the definition of being significant,” said attendee Port St. Lucie Assistant Police Chief Rich Del Toro. “There’s a big difference between being successful and being significant. When you’re successful, it’s all about how much you make. When you become significant is when you help other people become successful.”

Save the date for the next Busch Family Foundation event, a rodeo/concert on April 24, 2021.

For more information, please visit buschff.org

Out2News/Out2martincounty.com is a photo journal featuring people, “Who they are, what they do and where they do it”.

Do you have something to say, an event to talk about? An event you would like to have covered? Do it here!

Email your story or request to: rshall@out2martincounty.com

Out2News/Out2martincounty.com adheres to full compliance with C.O.P.P.A. (Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998)

“YOUR" Treasure Coast Newspaper & Photo Journal

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In Photo: Busch Family Foundation President Philip Busch, with Scott Holmes and Paul Trabulsy

Monarch Golf & Country Club Hosts Palm City Chamber of Commerce October Lunch & Learn

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Palm City – On Thursday, October 8, 2020 The Palm City Chamber of Commerce had had their first Lunch & Learn since the craziness of the Covid 19 virus has made many events that the Chamber would have had but have been unable. The October Lunch & Lunch for October 2020 was attend by approximately 35 attendees. Attendees all wore masks before lunch was served.

Monarch Golf & Country Club did an outstanding job catering and social distancing with members, serving a wonderful lunch.

They are located at: 1801 SW. Monarch Club Drive, Palm City. Monarch Golf & Country Club is located in Palm City with the great tradition of Southern golf courses, Arnold Palmer was given free reign to create the ideal course. Enhancing the natural beauty of Monarch with its ideal location, exceptional amenities and gracious service.

Sponsor for the Lunch & Learn was Martin County School District. Mr. Garret Grabowski, Chief Operations Officer gave an overview of what the new Palm City Elementary School would look like and how it would impact the Palm City Community.  Questions were asked by the members and a lot was learned regarding traffic entrances, the look and feel of the new school.

The Palm City Chamber of Commerce strives to promote the continuous improvement of the common good and the quality of life in the community through the pursuit of new business. They are located in Palm City at 3168 SW Martin Downs Blvd. Contact them at: 772-286-8121.

Out2News is your Treasure Coast online newspaper where you are the reporter, photographer and YOU report the news! Do you have something to say, an event to a talk about? An event you would like us to have covered. If you wish a high resolution photo or would like to email your story or request to: rshall@out2martincounty.com.

Photo by: Courtesy of Robin Hall-Out2News.com

Out2News.com adheres to full compliance with C.O.P.P.A. (Children's Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998)

"Your Treasure Coast Newspaper & Photo Journal"

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Place of Hope Treasure Coast Host Hobe Sound Chamber of Commerce October Breakfast

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Hobe Sound – On Thursday, October 8, 2020 The Hobe Sound Chamber of Commerce had their October Breakfast at Place of Hope Treasure Coast in Hobe Sound. The event was well attended with approximately 60 attendees. Attendees all wore masks and socially distance throughout the event. Breakfast was catered by deLITEful kitchen Catering, located in Stuart.

Place of Hope is dedicated to providing a stable and loving environment for children, youth and families that are hurting. We are committed to meeting desperate needs in our community by sharing God’s love and placing hope in their lives- one life at a time.We offer a full continuum of care for those in need with programs and services specializing in: family outreach and intervention, maternity care, safety for victims of domestic minor sex trafficking, affordable transitional housing and supportive services for young adults, housing and support for homeless families, foster care recruitment, hope and healing opportunities for children, youth and families throughout our region.

Place of Hope’s social enterprise Peninsula Coffee, a large and fully appointed indoor/outdoor event space, as well as home to three executive suite spaces. They are located at: 11810 SE Dixie Highway in Hobe Sound. Contact:Jamie Bond 561-775-7195 for more information.

Angela Hoffman with The Boys & Girls Club of Martin County spoke about the mission of their organization and mention that they collbrate with Place of Hope.Provide a world-class Club Experience that assures success is within reach of every young person who enters our doors, with all members on track to graduate from high school with a plan for the future, demonstrating good character and citizenship, and living a healthy lifestyle.For more information contact them at: 772.545.1255.

The Hobe Sound Chamber of Commerce plays a significant role in the Martin County and northern Palm Beach County business community. The Chamber is a business organization financed entirely by membership investments. It provides opportunities for members to stay connected, network, advertise, receive continuing education, business support and always gives back to their community. They are located at: 8958 SE Bridge Rd, Hobe Sound. Contact them at: 772-546-4724

Out2News is your Treasure Coast online newspaper where you are the reporter, photographer and YOU report the news! Do you have something to say, an event to a talk about? An event you would like us to have covered. If you wish a high resolution photo or would like to email your story or request to: rshall@out2martincounty.com.
Photo by: Courtesy of Robin Hall-Out2News.com LLC.
Out2News.com adheres to full compliance with C.O.P.P.A. (Children's Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998)
"Your Treasure Coast Photo Journal"

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20 Aug Skin Serenity Spa Logo LG

How Does LLC Ownership Work?

19 Nov Woodward Logo
20 Sept LLC Woodward

The limited liability company (LLC) is a popular business structure for new businesses, but what does it really mean to own an LLC? LLCs provide unique opportunities to customize business ownership to fit the particular needs and circumstances of the owners. Here is what you should know about LLC ownership.

The Basics

The owners of LLCs are often called members. If a single person or a single business entity owns an LLC, it is called a single-member LLC. If multiple people or entities own an LLC, it is called a multimember LLC. LLCs can have an unlimited number of members. When ownership is established, the membership interests are usually expressed in one of two ways:

by membership units similar to corporate shares
by percentage
The terminology you choose to use for a membership interest should correspond to your vision for the company. For example, if the business is owned primarily by your family, identifying the membership interests by percentages may keep things clear and straightforward. However, if you intend to seek funding from individuals outside of the family, you may find that labeling the ownership interests as membership units facilitates the easy transfer of ownership rights.

Establishing Ownership Rights

To be an LLC member, some form of contribution is required; however, the contribution need not be cash, which is called a capital contribution. LLC members can also contribute property or services. Additionally, unlike contributions to a corporation, when an LLC member makes a capital contribution, the concomitant ownership rights and distributions can be customized. For example, if one member were to contribute 40 percent of the capital in an LLC, that member and the other LLC members may still choose to split profits fifty-fifty.

Generally, LLC members are entitled to share in the company’s profits and losses, vote regarding key LLC matters, inspect and review the books, and enjoy a host of other rights. These rights stem from default state laws; however, they may be customized through contractual agreements. The contractual agreement that typically governs LLC ownership rights is an operating agreement. Operating agreements may include the following common customizations:

Distributing profits and losses in a way that does not match the members’ capital contributions
Creating different classes of ownership to reflect passive investor rights
Mandating member meetings
Transferring Membership Interests

Death, incapacity, and sale are the primary events that trigger transfers of membership units. However, if you intend to transfer membership units to investors, be sure to evaluate whether your interest is a security under the federal securities law. If you offer your interest to less than thirty-five investors, your interest likely qualifies for an exemption that allows you to bypass the federal disclosure requirements and even some state securities law.

Management

LLC members can choose to be managed either by the LLC members (a member-managed LLC), or by nonowners or certain members designated as managers (a manager-managed LLC). When an LLC is managed, it is vital to identify and articulate the decisions for which the members bear responsibility and the decisions the managers must make. If the decision-making authority is not clear, the resulting uncertainty can hinder effective management of the LLC.

Payment

LLC members can pay themselves in several ways, such as

Receiving income in the form of distributions of profits at the end of the year,
Receiving draws, which are periodic payments based on the estimated profits for the year, or
Receiving periodic payments as employees of the business.
These three methods are not mutually exclusive—a member can take advantage of more than one option. However, members must remember that each option has unique tax consequences. LLC members should account for Social Security and Medicare taxes. When LLC members pay themselves as employees, the LLC is expected to withhold taxes as it would for any other employee. Conversely, when members pay themselves based on their profits, they must pay self-employment taxes. Either way, LLC members must be mindful of the tax consequences of the payment methods they choose.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Out2News. Any content provided by our bloggers or authors are of their opinion, and are not intended to malign any religion, ethic group, club, organization, company, individual or anyone or anything.

Key Considerations for Managing a Remote Workforce

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20 July Woodward Photo

The post-COVID-19 world will likely see a major shift toward companies maintaining remote workforces. Due to government-mandated business closures and stay-home orders, many owners and employees of small businesses have been forced to work virtually, and they have seen the benefits. Studies show that remote working increases productivity.Large technology companies like Facebook and Twitter have announced that they will be implementing remote working until at least September 2020. Some companies have even gone as far as to give employees the option of working from home permanently. The “new normal” that many predict involves more companies maintaining a remote workforce.

As a business owner, you may be exploring the idea of permanently utilizing a remote workforce; however, you may not be aware of all of the relevant factors to consider and preparations to implement. Be sure to take the following measures as you move toward permanent virtual employment.

1. Increase security measures for information stored in the cloud.

As your company begins functioning in a paperless world, you must take appropriate steps to ensure data shared over digital cloud networks are secure. One way to increase security is to provide the specific tools employees will use in completing their tasks. For example, establish a policy allowing only company-issued phones and laptops to be used when handling work business. In complying with these measures, keep your team accountable by restricting the reception and transmission of company emails; requiring the use of secure passwords—passwords comprised of many characters, including symbols and numerals;
providing guidelines regarding proper social media usage; and
providing access to encrypted wireless networks.
By taking these additional precautions, a company addresses confidentiality concerns and further protects itself and its customers or clients from potential data breaches.

2. Comply with federal and state wage laws.

For business owners, understanding labor rules and laws that apply to specific situations is key for the successful implementation and continuation of a remote workforce. It is important to keep in mind that federal legislation requires employers to pay nonexempt workers for any work over forty hours in a single workweek. This is especially challenging for individuals classified as part-time workers, because tracking their time at home could be difficult and could result in a nonexempt worker exceeding the forty-hour cap. As a result, when working with a remote workforce, it is critical to create systems and structures that enable employees to indicate and record their start and end times. Additionally, most states have minimum wage requirements, with some exceeding the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour. If you have an employee who resides in a state whose minimum wage differs from the federal minimum wage, you are required to pay the higher of the two.

3. Pay applicable taxes.

For employers with remote employees in more than one state, payment of state taxes is a key requirement. Typically, if you and your employees are in one state, you are only responsible for paying taxes in that state. However, this rule changes if your business has a nexus to another state as determined by that state’s law. The presence of an employee in a state usually constitutes sufficient evidence of such a nexus. In these instances, you are required to pay taxes in that state.

4. If You Need Help….Ask Us. We Can Help!

We are dedicated to helping you adjust and thrive in the post-COVID-19 world. If you have any questions about developing your remote work employee policy, do not hesitate to call our office. A dedicated attorney will be available to guide you through the process. We are happy to meet with you by phone or video conference if you prefer.

Woodward,Kelley,Fulton & Kaplan
27 SE Ocean Blvd.
Stuart, FL 34994
(772) 497-6544

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