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In the recent months I have personally noticed a rise in Black celebrity’s who are having problems with the IRS.

My heart always goes out for those who experience that.  You may wonder why I  feel bad for them.  Imagine being an employee & getting money back from the IRS over the years. Now, after  coming into this new found money, and new level of life, you find you  are responsible for paying them.  Our first instinct is to shrug and  say they should know better and expect them to handle their business.   Here is a good lesson to learn about lifestyles of the rich famous.   Real talk: being famous doesn’t equal a strong financial group of advisers!

I say all that to say that it is imperative to file & pay your taxes every year. !

There is nothing worst than having your hard earned money garnished from your account or having a lien put on anything that you own. I have found that it is best to set up installment plans if you cannot pay all at once.

Here are a few tips to help you avoid the IRS Blues:

1)  Research: Do your research on the accountant you choose. Remember just because they have the degree or title doesn’t mean they know what they are doing. (i.e.-Leona Helmsley, the hotel tycoon was indicted because of her accountant mishandling funds.)

2) Address It: If you get into tax trouble don’t ignore it but address it. You may need to get a good tax attorney depending on how deep the issue is

3) Make Arrangements: The IRS is open taking installment so you may need to some up

4) Consider Percentage Payments: Pay monthly a percentage of income.  This will hep avoid a large tax bills at the end of the year.

5) Receipts matter:  Keep all your receipts. There are multiple ways to keep everything neat. Use a  scanner program that will allow you to categorize all of your receipts) many of your expenses that can be written off.

File those taxes, you’ll be happy you did it!

Until next time.

Jewel Tankard is the star of  Bravo reality television show “Thicker Than Water: The Tankards”. The show follows Jewel, her husband Ben Tankard and their five children and one grand-child. Ben Tankard is a former NBA player and current pastor of a church called The Destiny Center.

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