As the end of the year approaches, it is a good time to think about moves that will help lower your tax bill for this year and possibly the next.

President-elect Donald Trump has proposed sweeping changes in federal income tax policy, including significant decreases in taxes on higher incomes, but of course nothing will become law until Congress acts. In the meantime, there is a lot that individuals and business owners can do prior to December 31 of this year that can help reduce their 2016 tax obligation.

Factors that compound the planning challenge this year include political and economic uncertainty, and Congress’s all-too-familiar failure to act on a number of important tax breaks that will expire at the end of 2016. Some of these expiring tax breaks will likely be extended, but perhaps not all, and as in the past, Congress may not decide the fate of these tax breaks until the very end of 2016 (or later).

Below we provide two checklists that highlight the opportunities and challenges that affect year-end planning for 2016, including actions that can cut taxes for this year and in the years to come.

One checklist describes actions individuals can take before December 31 to save taxes. 

The second checklist describes tax-saving actions businesses and business owners can take prior to year-end. (Business owners should also review the items on the checklist for individuals.)

>> For Individuals  

>> For Businesses and Business Owners