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How Poor Bookkeeping Cost Altermeds Over $78K in Penalties

When it comes to cannabis record-keeping, not every dispensary wants to spend the fees on an accountant specific to the niche. That’s what happened to one dispensary owner in Colorado, who owes $391K in tax deficiencies and an additional $78K in accuracy-related penalties.

But how exactly did this happen?

According to the notice of deficiency for tax years 2010 and 2011, the IRS found poor record-keeping, lack of check registers, no physical inventory counts, reduction of COGS, and the...

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First AICPA Cannabis Conference Paves the Future for the Industry

As states across our country continue to legalize Cannabis every year, CPAs, bookkeepers, and accounting professionals are steadily encountering new clients who want to serve the Cannabis industry. The AICPA (American Institute of Certified Public Accountants} has now recognized the need for providing guidance and support to accountants who may support the quickly growing Cannabis market. 

Calling on industry leaders, the AICPA held its first 2-day Cannabis education conference, the...

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Do’s and Don’ts of Cannabis Cost of Goods Sold and IRC 471-11 Accounting and Tax

Due to the fact that Cannabis is classified as a Schedule I drug (in spite of the fact that the majority of states in this country have voted to legalize Cannabis in some form or fashion), ALL Cannabis companies must comply with 280E. There’s little grey area here, but if you’re in the business of harvesting, producing, manufacturing, or selling Cannabis in any way, shape, or form, your business is not able to legally take deductions.

IRC 280E clearly states:

No deduction or...

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Choosing the Right Cannabis or CBD Entity Structure

NOTE: When forming a legal entity it is best that all parties involved seek experienced, informed legal counsel. Preferably a tax AND corporate attorney that can help guide you in making legal decisions.  

At the inception of a Cannabis or CBD company, one of the most important first steps is to decide on the entity structure, where the client will be deciding how the business will be taxed, how equity will be dispersed when investors come on board, and how to protect the assets of...

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8 Ways Cannabis Startups Differ from Traditional Startups (and the Vital Skills Accountants Need to Help Them Flourish)

Cannabis startups are much more complicated than traditional startups. They face a set of unique challenges that require accountants to be clear on state licensing rules and federal regulations regarding controlled substances, making Cannabis companies 10x more likely to fail than non-Cannabis.

We’re not talking about not being successful in business -- we mean getting audited and paying massive fines, criminal charges against CEOs for illegal market activity, loss of licensure, and...

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11 Cannabis Accounting Experts Share Industry Software Tips

Cannabis accounting software is hard to come by, and options that do exist are abysmal at best. Most vendors won’t come near the federally illegal industry. Also, the software that is available tends to be buggy and won’t typically integrate well with your clients’ existing accounting software. 

Without efficient “out-of-the-box” software solutions in place, you’d have to resort to pen and paper and archaic spreadsheets. Not only is that method...

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5 Accounting Myths Cannabis CEOs Believe (and How to Debunk Them)

If you’re a Cannabis accounting professional, or are working towards learning how to serve clients in this space, you may have already experienced the frustrations of trying to reach out to Cannabis clients, only to be told that you’re not needed because they “already have an in-house bookkeeper” and that they’re sure their current accounting system is just fine. Until Cannabis CEOs understand that their practices are often inaccurate and self-damaging (as they...

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How to Legally Maximize Your Clients’ Tax Benefit: An Introduction to Cost Accounting for Cannabis/CBD/Hemp

cost accounting gaap Mar 05, 2021

Cost accounting is essential for proper Cannabis and CBD/hemp accounting and tax; however, if you are not doing cost accounting correctly (or at all), your clients could be missing some benefit under IRC 471-11 and paying too much in taxes. On the other hand, if you claim a significant amount of costs allocated to inventory (and eventually COGS) incorrectly, your clients could end up in hot water when audited, and potentially owe thousands of dollars in back taxes, interest, and...

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Lessons in Compliance from 4 Notorious Cannabis Court Cases

2021 is already shaping up to be a historic year for Cannabis, on the heels of the huge growth and developments the industry experienced in 2020. From skyrocketing sales amid the pandemic to five new states welcoming legalized Cannabis in the November elections, the industry is poised for big changes on the horizon.

Now, with the recent Senate power shift and the House voting on the MORE (Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement) Act, Cannabis may finally be removed from its...

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4 Things Cannabis and CBD/Hemp Accountants Need to Know About 471 (That Will Save Your Clients Money and Frustration)

280e 471-11 irc 471 Jan 05, 2021

Cannabis companies are springing up across the country, and for good reason. There is a huge opportunity for growth in this market and businesses are just scratching the surface. However, it’s your job to be the expert on the numbers and the complicated rules to stay ahead of the game and keep your clients moving forward.

Despite the many opportunities in the industry, Cannabis companies face certain challenges due to its federally illegal status, especially in regards to tax...

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