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Self Employed

November 3, 2009 | Times Wire Reports
The Canadian government will unveil plans to allow self-employed people to opt into the employment insurance system to get maternity and parental benefits. Human Resources Minister Diane Finley will announce the new measures today. Canada has 2.6 million self-employed, and they have been excluded from the system until now.
December 21, 2012 | By Ricardo Lopez, Los Angeles Times
California's unemployment fell below 10% in November for the first time in almost four years, thanks in part to a holiday hiring surge by retailers. The jobless rate fell to 9.8% from 10.1% in October, according to data in an overall jobs report released Friday by the state Employment Development Department. The drop in the unemployment rate, based on a survey of households, came even as a separate payroll survey found that employers shed a net 3,800 jobs in California, according to the report.
November 27, 1987 | TIA GINDICK, Tia Gindick is a Los Angeles free-lance writer
People have been doing it for years, but now it's everywhere. The corporate secretary who, for a fee, will type your personal manuscript at home over the weekend. - The graphic artist who last year worked on seven different teams that created advertisements for 15 clients. - The film cameraman who says he only accepts jobs that take him out of the United States because he doesn't want to be tied down.
April 20, 2012 | By Lisa Zamosky, Special to the Los Angeles Times
My wife and I arrived as legal immigrants from Canada four years ago at the age of 63 to be closer to our three children. Having lived in Canada most of our lives, we never contributed to Medicare. Right now I am self-employed and have a small-business health plan through Kaiser. The premiums have escalated from $450 per month to $1,228 per month, with a very high deductible. I am afraid we may have to return to Canada, where we enjoyed free health care. I am sure that many parents who join their children in the U.S. are in the same situation and would like to know what other options are available.
September 11, 1989
I served jury duty this past year in Torrance. All self-employed persons were excused from jury duty. With no self-employed on the jury, how does a self-employed person get a jury of his peers? WILLIAM D. SIMPSON Rancho Palos Verdes
May 31, 1994
I've been diligently self-employed for 23 years, and no one has even whispered "tenure" to me. Now, is that fair? ART STANLOW, Costa Mesa
July 13, 1997
Well, here we go again. The most popular article these days about small office/home office workers is about how self-employed people secretly take naps ("Take Your Perks Seriously [and Lying Down]" by Daniel Akst, June 16). Wake up and smell the coffee. I don't have time to nap--I have a business to run and work to do. Being self-employed and working at home is a business, just like any other business, except we usually work much longer hours. I start working at 5 a.m., and my workday isn't over until about 6:30 to 7 p.m. I work Saturdays and Sundays as well, averaging about 80 hours a week.
April 14, 1997
Your attack on self-employed businesses (editorial, April 8) is grossly irresponsible and outrageous. Thousands of businesses pay substantial sums to people like myself to ensure that their taxes are properly prepared. This is in spite of the costly burden of overly complicated, often illogical tax regulations that only make sense when measured against the voracious appetite of the government for more and more money. I would not for a minute defend any tax cheater, but your brush is entirely too broad.
June 17, 1993
In reaction to the article on job-loss statistics (June 9): The latest California figures for lost jobs over the last three years has been revised to 552,700, claiming that the 800,000 to 900,000 originally reported was flawed by overcounting the work force. I think that this revision is defective. What about self-employed individuals like myself? Do we ever appear in unemployment, health and medical insurance statistics? I think not. Before the government gleefully reports that it's not nearly as bad as originally thought, reflect on this: The self-employed are often "un" or "under" employed.
September 7, 2000
"White House Favors U.S. Aid for Uninsured" (Sept. 5) stated that Bill Clinton wants to spend 23 billion taxpayer dollars to insure 6 million people. Simple long division shows us that he will be spending $3,800 per person per year. I am self-employed, and I insure my family of four for $3,200 per year. That is $800 per person per year. What gives? STEVE REICH Oxnard
October 1, 2011 | By Anna Gorman, Los Angeles Times
Anh Van never intended to have children. So when she went to the doctor for what she believed was the flu, she was surprised to discover she was pregnant. Then she got another shock: Her private insurance didn't include maternity care. Van, who has insulin-dependent diabetes, called several companies but couldn't find anyone willing to cover her pregnancy.  "Every insurance company we called basically denied us," said her husband, Brian Huh. "It was pretty appalling. " Although HMOs and employer-based insurance policies in California are required to include maternity care, individual policies are not. That leaves women who are self-employed or not covered at work with few options, including paying out of pocket for pregnancy and childbirth costs.
July 17, 2011 | Liz Weston, Money Talk
Dear Liz: I'm 25 and trying to maximize my tax savings and retirement contributions. I currently have two jobs: One is the typical salaried position with taxes withheld where I earn $45,000 a year, while the other is self-employed work I do on the side that grosses about $7,000 a year. Currently I have a Roth IRA that I max out and a 401(k) that gets the equivalent of 13% of my salary when combined with my employer's contribution. Given that I don't get a refund on April 15 and end up having to pony up a lot of money, is there a way for me to set aside my self-employment income into a retirement account such that I can just bypass all taxes on it, including payroll taxes?
May 15, 2011 | Kathy M. Kristof, Personal Finance
If you're self employed and yearning to shelter some of your income from taxes, you probably know all about SEP-IRAs, the retirement plan for small-business owners. But do you know about so-called solo 401(k)s? Probably not, unless you can afford to put a substantial amount of your income into tax-sheltered accounts. If you do, solo 401(k)s can offer some advantages. "They give you a lot more options," said Stuart Robertson, head of ShareBuilder 401k, a subsidiary of ING Direct.
April 4, 2011 | By Karen E. Klein
Dear Karen: I'm self-employed and make $20,000 a year. The tax lady calculated that I owe $1,600. Can this be right? Answer: Self-employment income is subject to both income tax and self-employment tax. Ordinary income can be reduced by standard deductions and exemptions, but income subject to self-employment tax cannot, said Donald Lucove, a CPA with Lucove, Say & Co. in Calabasas. "The self-employment tax is calculated using 92.35% of self-employment income at 15.3%," he said.
April 3, 2011 | Liz Weston, Money Talk
Dear Liz: I'm 50 and self-employed. I am trying to save as much as possible for retirement. I've put the maximum allowable in my IRA ($6,000). What else can I do? Would contributing to a Roth at this age be advisable? What other options are out there? Answer: You're lucky — you actually have more options to save for retirement than people who don't own their businesses, if you can spare the cash to make significant contributions. You can contribute up to $14,000 annually to a SIMPLE IRA (the limit is $11,500 for people under 50)
March 27, 2011 | Kathy M. Kristof, Personal Finance
Welcome to tax season ? the most dreaded time of year. It's not just that preparing a tax return is time-consuming and costly ? although it's clearly both. The Internal Revenue Service estimates that it takes roughly 23 hours and costs about $300, on average, to compile and file a Form 1040. There is also the stress of not knowing whether you've claimed all of the deductions and credits you're due, or made some dumb mistake that could have tax authorities on your tail. "If we go too small we feel cheated and resentful, and if we claim too much we may feel jittery and anxious, looking over our shoulder for the tax man in the trench coat," said Brad Klontz, a financial psychologist and co-author of "Mind Over Money: Overcoming the Money Disorders That Threaten Our Financial Health.
May 28, 1989 | From United Press International
Eugene Keogh, a veteran congressman from Brooklyn who was the chief sponsor of the pension plan legislation that bears his name, died of pneumonia Friday at St. Vincent's Hospital in Manhattan. He was 81. Keogh, a Brooklyn native, served in Congress 30 years, representing a heavily Democratic district that included parts of East New York, Canarsie, New Lots, Cypress Hills and Brunswick. Under the Keogh Plan, self-employed people such as doctors, lawyers, salesmen and free-lance writers may, for pension purposes, invest part of their income in a fund that is exempt from federal taxes until the money is withdrawn at retirement.
January 9, 1994
"Big Squeeze Faces Valley Charities" (Dec. 28) reports on people's growing reluctance to contribute. A second story in the same issue, "Charity Used Bingo Revenues to Pay Salaries," explains why. Seventy-two thousand dollars in back pay to a director of a charity? I haven't earned that in the last three years of working full time. People are tired of the "gimme, gimme, gimme" mentality afflicting too many people today. As a self-employed entrepreneur, I work for everything I have and am up early every day to earn that living.
August 15, 2010 | Liz Pulliam Weston, Money Talk
Dear Liz: My 74-year-old mother was laid off from her full-time job in May. My siblings and I were horrified to learn that she owes $41,000 on 12 credit cards with interest rates ranging from 9.9% to 29.9%. None of the issuing banks is willing to lower her interest rates. With her Social Security benefits and unemployment, she is just barely getting by, but unable to afford more than her minimum payments on the credit cards. She does not own a home and rents a duplex for $650 a month.
April 19, 2010 | Sharon Bernstein, Ann M. Simmons and Nicole Santa Cruz, Los Angeles Times
The health insurance overhaul signed into law last month has been billed as the most sweeping reform in generations. And it is. In broad strokes, the law provides tax credits for small businesses that offer health insurance, and subsidies for people who buy it for themselves. More people will be eligible for Medicaid, and insurers won't be able to charge more for those with preexisting conditions. But when it comes down to how the law mixes with the variables of everyday life, things get complicated.
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