Remember when you did not want to raise your hand in school because you didn’t want your classmates to know you weren’t confident in your answer? Many of us find ourselves in a similar situation when it comes to our taxes. Tax laws can be vague and confusing, especially for business owners like our independent contractors (ICs). If you’re having trouble grasping your taxes this season, you are not alone. You have the assistance of Con-way Truckload behind you.

It’s important for ICs to understand tax liability issues, deductions, tax credits and strategies. As a courtesy to our ICs, Con-way Truckload partners with ATBS, a trusted tax and accounting firm. We work with them to provide helpful information, tips, advice and strategies to reduce your tax liability. Recently, we hosted a call for ICs with representatives from ATBS on hand to address many frequently asked tax questions. The call has been developed into a podcast that can be found at the following link:

http://true2blue.com/podcast/february-2015-independent-contractor-tax-services/

Here are some key tips from our special IC Your Voice is Heard podcast:

 

TIP #1: QUARTERLY TAX PAYMENTS

As a self-employed owner-operator, you are required to file quarterly and make tax payments that include Federal income tax, state income tax and self-employment tax. It is recommended that you set aside 25-28 percent of your weekly net income toward these taxes.

There are two methods to estimate your quarterly taxes: the first is the Safe Harbor method. Simply divide your prior year’s tax liability by four to calculate your quarterly tax estimate. However, if your income fluctuates from year to year or quarter to quarter, calculate your actual quarterly income and pay based on that amount. Be sure to pay each quarter to avoid penalties.

 

TIP #2: TAKE ADVANTAGE OF EVERY LEGAL DEDUCTION AND CREDIT AVAILABLE

A downloadable list of over 100 tax-deductible items can be found at here. These include any expense incurred in the normal course of business, fuel, maintenance and insurance costs, and vehicle depreciation, lease and interest costs.

Remember, tax deductions are only allowed if documentation can be provided to support any claims on your return. Don’t throw away any receipts, cancelled checks, logbooks or any other valid proofs of payment. A rule of thumb is to hang onto these documents for at least three years.

 

TIP #3: TAX CREDITS & BUSINESS STRUCTURE

You may qualify for several tax credits that can contribute significantly to lowering your liability. Often overlooked tax credits include the American Opportunity Credit, the Earned Income Tax Credit and the Child-care and Dependent Tax Credit. Setting up the appropriate business structure can result in significant savings as well. It is recommended that independent owner-operators set up a Limited Liability Company (LLC) and file taxes as an S Corp.

 

TIP #4: THE IMPACT OF THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT (ACA)

Important changes in tax regulation could have a profound effect on your business. For instance, there is a premium tax credit for health insurance purchased on a federal exchange but a potential liability for not carrying health insurance in 2014. There are also updated regulations pertaining to the purchase of health coverage outside of the open enrollment period, fees for not having coverage and new forms related to your federal tax return.

- – - – - – - – -

In summary, reducing your liability and paying less in taxes begins and ends with your willingness to do the necessary research. It’s a matter of good planning, organization and record keeping.

Helping you lower your tax liability, strengthen your business and meet your professional goals is just one way Con-way Truckload supports our IC drivers.

To learn more about what we offer, visit www.True2Blue.com, and to share your tax questions or tips, join the conversation on www.facebook.com/conwaytruckload.

 

 

Our most recent LIVE Facebook chat took place on February 10, 2015 and we were pleased to kick off the new year with members of our recruiting team answering questions for over 50 attendees!

Check out the transcript below for some highlights. Remember: you can always ask us questions on Facebook or Twitter, just include #ConwayTL in your Twitter post or post to our Facebook page!

2013 Dec. Karen Thomas

Con-way Truckload: Welcome to today’s chat! Post your questions now, our recruiters are standing by to answer.

Q: I have had  my CDL since 2012 but have done only local, never OTR, can I join as a student driver?

Con-way Truckload: If you previously drove a combination vehicle then you would only need minimal training to drive OTR, which we would be happy to provide! We’d be happy to discuss your specific situation, call us at 866-265-2617.

Q: How do I get credit for recruiting drivers?

Con-way Truckload: Have new drivers give their recruiter your name and employee ID. Referral bonuses are a great way to make some extra money!

Con-way Truckload: We frequently get asked about benefits for drivers. Con-way Truckload is pleased to offer group medical, 401k, life insurance policy, SiriusXM Satellite Radio, a free rider program and more!

Q: Satellite radio is great!! Thanks for looking out for the drivers Con-way!

Con-way Truckload: Thanks; glad you’re enjoying it! What is your favorite thing to listen to?

Q:  Bunches of stuff. Politics, comedy, most flavors of music.

Q: Is the satellite service offered to the independent contractors also?

Con-way Truckload: If the Independent Contractor has the radio we will provide the service, we are not distributing the physical radio at this time.

Q: Can I get a recruiter number?

Con-way Truckload: You can reach our recruiters at 866-265-2617.

Q: Are you hiring in Aurora, IL? 

Con-way Truckload: Yes we are! Give us a call at 866-265-2617 if you’d like to apply.

original_f15afe4ce6074d53a8989b24887695af (1)

 

Con-way Truckload: At Con-way Truckload we also like to encourage a healthy lifestyle for our drivers. Right now we’re running a contest for those who are eating healthy on a budget! Check it out here and enter for a chance to win Con-way Truckload prizes.

Q: What parts of South Florida do you hire in?

Con-way Truckload: We hire starting from Orlando and on up northward. We hope you are in our hiring area!

Q: How much experience do you require student drivers to have? I’m new to the business and I’m currently in my 5th month solo 

Con-way Truckload: No more experience is needed to start with us as a solo driver! Give our recruiting office a call at 866-265-2617 to apply.

Q: What about team driving? My husband and I have 10 months experience over the road. Also what about pets?

Con-way Truckload: Now is a great time to start as a team driver at Con-way Truckload, each member of the team is paid as a qualified driver at the experienced pay rate. We are pet friendly and allow one animal per driver, cat or dog please.

Q: I have my CDL but need more training. I lack the experience and am looking to drive in Houston.

Con-way Truckload: Please request a student recruiter for an evaluation: 866-265-2617.

Con-way Truckload: We have a few minutes left; if you have any other questions for our recruiters post them now!

Q: When can I call and talk to a recruiter?

Con-way Truckload: Our recruiting office is open Monday to Friday 7am to 7pm CST.

Con-way Truckload: We’re signing off for today, thanks to everyone who joined our live chat! As always, you can reach our recruiting office at 866-265-2617 or post more questions directly to our Facebook page.

 

 

Fitness on the Road: Yoga

Written by: on February 10th, 2015

Staying fit and healthy on the road is easier said than done. Yoga, a practice that includes breath control, simple meditation and specific postures, is widely practiced for health and relaxation. It is also a way to work out and stretch your body in a small space. As a bonus, yoga is known to be an excellent stress reliever, and your routine length and exertion is completely up to you!

Other benefits of yoga include:

  • Increased flexibility and strength
  • Muscle tone
  • Improved posture and balance
  • Weight control
  • Circulatory health
  • Increased concentration and energy

All you will need to practice yoga on the road is a yoga mat (these can be found anywhere sportswear is sold, such as Walmart – and can be rolled up for easy cab storage!). As you advance in your practice, a yoga block and a yoga strap may be useful. Also, keep plenty of water on hand to drink before and after your practice. The best place to arrange a mat can be right outside your truck, on a flat, steady surface.

Last week, employees at our Joplin campus were given the opportunity to participate in a regularly offered free yoga class. We learned a lot and converted a few new “yogis”!

YOGA 1

 

YOGA 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Below are a few of our favorite yoga resources. Prop up your phone or tablet and use these instructions and videos as your yoga guide.

Have you tried a yoga routine that you loved? Share it with us at: www.facebook.com/conwaytruckload.