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Financial Crisis Planning from The Wealthy Accountant

Every crisis has its own flavor. The Cuban Missile Crisis was man made and did absolutely nothing unless a stupid decision was made where the end of the world happened. The Great Depression came on rather fast, the 2008-9 housing crisis was brought to a boil slowly until the pot boiled over. And now we have our first serious pandemic in 100 years. 

The rules have changes since the 1918-19 Spanish Flu. Today we know washing our hands with soap and water for 20 seconds and social distancing are powerful tools  to prevent the spread of the virus. Modern medicine is also far more advanced from the early 20th Century. Ventilators and drug therapies can help many survive long enough until their bodies can fight the virus on its own.

If only that was all it took to solve the problem. The stock market is down, reflecting the dim prospects for companies trying to turn a profit in a quickly declining economy. Decisions need to be made while you are under heavy duress. Should you sell an investment, or maybe buy? Is early retirement or collecting Social Security early a good move? How does your business survive if it has been deemed non-essential? The financial decisions you make today will have consequences for years to come.

You can make a difference.

These and similar questions have filled my days this past week. Here I am writing this on Tuesday and already helped this week a 64 year old man decide if he should take Social Security early. We weighed his situation, considered the likelihood he may earn over the income limit before he reaches full retirement age, put into perspective the cost if he does exceed the income limit and compare it to what his current needs are. He had to make the final decision; I just helped him see the full picture clearly. 

In less than one day my office helped a restaurant go from a breakfast joint shut down due to the virus to a restaurant delivering meals from early morning to late at night. By outlining his options he was able to go from down and out to vibrant business. It looks like his business will be bigger than it was before the pandemic on the delivery service alone!

These and other serious business and financial issues are superseding my normal work in the tax arena. Plus we have two new tax laws and a third on the way. People are confused and small business owners have plenty to worry about.

Today the governor of my state deemed my office essential. (Whew!) Tax returns have slowed from the pace expected this time of year if there were no pandemic and what comes in is all virtual. And people have until July 15th to get their return filed and any tax paid. Temporary employees have all been sent home, A skeleton crew remains to answer the phone, receive and send documents via mail and portal and prepare the returns, payroll and bookkeeping that does come in.

Rather than close the doors, I will do the most essential thing of all: help you, kind readers, make sense of the unknowns in our world today.

I have pulled back from consulting over the past year because it is a very grueling job, taking a large amount of energy. Doing too much only means I end up sick (breaking down from exhaustion versus an actual illness). That happened last tax season when I felt I could consult, prepare taxes, and keep a regular schedule of social media events informing people of the best tax strategies out there. (I went down like a sack of potatoes.)

Helping friends in need is what friends are for.

But things have changed. My work schedule has obviously declined. Therefore, I am opening the doors to more consulting sessions. If you contacted me before, please resubmit your request. We did get to some of the requests from earlier this year in the past few days, but tax clients took precedence.

Now that things have changed I will have available time to focus on dealing with the unique issues facing you. I will not tell you what to do, but I can build an understandable picture to help you make the best choices possible. If I can help you remove the emotions involved and focus on the facts of the situation, it should be financially rewarding with benefits that extend for years or even to the rest of your life. 

At the end of this post I will provide the link to my Contact Page. Read the rules for working with me and then outline your situation in your consulting request. If it is something I don’t think I can help with I will let you know and point you to someone who can help if I have someone in mind. If I feel I can add value my team will ask a few questions so I can adequately prepare for the consulting session. 

These sessions do not have to focus on taxes only. We can discuss retirement, buying or selling real estate or any other investment, personal struggles during this pandemic and more. I will always offer encouragement. It is so important you focus and think clearly as you make decisions during this crisis! I have helped clients for decades deal with the worst of crises. Nothing is off limits in consulting sessions while this pandemic is active. I will not give medical advice, of course, but I can help you make the best medical decision for you as you work thought your personal situation. We are in this together. We will take this rapid onset medical, investment and economic crisis head on. It will never be perfect, but we can make it better than it is now.

Finally, I struggled with how I should handle my fee for consulting. I decided to keep my normal fee so I can keep employees paid and moral high on the home front. All fees received that are not used to pay for salaries and other expenses related to consulting sessions will be donated to homeless shelters, abuse shelters and food banks in my local community. If funding permits, I will also donate to similar organizations supported in the past around the country. 

Here is the link to the Contact Page. I am eager to work with you. Let’s get started.


Required Reading 



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Thursday 26th of March 2020

Hi Keith how are you planning for the next 6 months in terms of your cash position?

Keith Taxguy

Friday 27th of March 2020

William, my cash position was rather high the past year or so. Once we wiped out all of the gains since the last presidential election I had to put the rest of the liquid funds back into the S&P index at Vanguard. Regardless, I keep several years of living expenses in cash. That will never change since I am at the age where that is a wise thing to do.

Mr. Hobo Millionaire

Thursday 26th of March 2020

Do you know if Estimated Tax deadlines are pushed as well?

Keith Taxguy

Thursday 26th of March 2020

HM, estimated payments also get the extension to July 15th without penalty or interest.


Wednesday 25th of March 2020

Nice article, its true you need to make some hard choices with the current information that is available.

Our restaurants not so lucky in this lockdown. Our Health minister decided they must shut as well as all food delivery. So Uber and Ubereats and delivery services are closed. Small restaurants and business owners will not recover and pre this crisis our country (South Africa) was already in recession. Will do our best to rebuild a new stronger economy once we survive this period. Good luck and carry on!

Keith Taxguy

Wednesday 25th of March 2020

Bob, I unfortunately think locally in this matter because the rules are so different everywhere you go. I agree we need to do our best to build a better world. This will make all of us better. Stay safe and healthy.


Tuesday 24th of March 2020

If this virus gave anything to us, it gives some people a much needed break, time to breathe, reflect, and maybe make changes to what is important to them moving forward in life. Hope all are well. As once said, "this too shall pass."

Keith Taxguy

Wednesday 25th of March 2020

I agree wholeheartedly, Gene. Even this tired old blogger has found meaning in this forced pause. If only nobody would have to get sick or die to achieve these goals. And you are right, this too shall pass. Hopefully we remember the lessons learned.

Tiffany Larson

Tuesday 24th of March 2020

Keith did some tax planning for us last year and it was very helpful in that we had no surprises come tax season. Thanks Keith!

Keith Taxguy

Tuesday 24th of March 2020

Always glad to help, Tiffany, and even happier when the efforts yield dividends.