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Gray entrepreneurs should know about taxes

When you think about today’s common entrepreneur, who do you envision: the baby faced techie or the gray haired dreamer? If you have seen the movie “The Intern,” chances are that you will identify with Anne Hathaway’s character more than Robert DeNiro’s. However, in today’s changing economy, more baby boomers are starting their own businesses for just the reason DeNiro’s character answered the ad for “senior interns.”

According to a recent Forbes.com report, the fastest growing age group among entrepreneurs are those over the age of 65. In 2014, this group grew by 11 percent to represent about 25 percent of all new business owners. By comparison, this group was only 14.8 percent of all entrepreneurs 20 years ago. 

With more people being forced to work into their golden years, their knowledge of tax law may be lacking for a number of reasons. First, many have been climbing the corporate ladder, where additional business tax knowledge may not have been needed.

Second, the health of most baby boomers may improve by staying in the marketplace. As we noted earlier, Robert DeNiro’s character regularly admitted that he needed “something” to enhance his life. Additionally, with some boomers projected to live longer, it is more likely that they will work in the business well into their 70’s and 80’s.

However, not knowing about the tax implications could be harmful to a business owner’s health. With that said, a new entrepreneur should consult with an experienced tax attorney to protect themselves from mistakes that can derail their aspirations.

The preceding is not legal advice. 

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