MSD Insider 0:00
Welcome to MedShark Insider, with Bill Fukui, your expert host on all things medical marketing, and SEO.
Bill Fukui 0:09
Hi, everybody, I want to welcome you to another episode of MedShark Insider. And today we’re going to be talking about a slightly different topic. It is about profitability in practices. And I’m gonna introduce Jed Wunderli. I’m assuming I’m pronouncing that correctly Jed.
Jed Wunderli 0:29
You are. Thanks, Bill.
Bill Fukui 0:31
Super. And Jed has some insights that that I think is different than the traditional digital marketing or advertising, consulting kinds of things. His background is a little varied, but I think he has an opportunity that a lot of our clients, as well as attendees to this webinar would be, would qualify for and would have great interest in. So number one, I want to welcome you today, Jed.
Jed Wunderli 1:01
Thank you, Bill, I appreciate you having me on.
Bill Fukui 1:03
Yeah, a little bit of background for our audience. I met Jed at a cosmetic meeting, over at Vegas Cosmetic, and had a great time, learned a lot lot about kind of what he does. And we kind of hit it off. I had a great time there, Jed.
Jed Wunderli 1:24
As did I, it was, it was great meeting you. And you know, meeting good quality people is always a good thing to do.
Bill Fukui 1:32
Yeah, so do me a favor, and I kind of learned a little bit about your background, but why don’t you go ahead and share a little bit of who you are, and, and what you do, and then we can kind of jump into some of the opportunities for some of our clients.
Jed Wunderli 1:52
You got it. So Bill, I’ve, you know, I’ve been involved in the financial industry for probably about 30 plus years now, I started off as a series seven licensed representative with Fidelity Investments, I did that for about two and a half years, really loved it. And, and of course, I grew up watching my dad invest in stocks, and, you know, charting stocks and things like that which piqued my interest. And so when I got the opportunity to work for Fidelity, I jumped at it. And then from there, I was looking at other opportunities, like I did mortgages for about 27 years or so. And, you know, the, the background I got from Fidelity between all the stuff you have to study to be, you know, get your series seven and, and then talk about with, with clients and whatnot, gave me a lot of great knowledge for my own personal investing, that I do to help prepare for retirement. And with that, you know, I always kind of had that, in my mind when I would work with mortgage clients is, you know, trying to help them, you know, encourage them to invest and to do, you know, be wise with their finances, so that they can prepare for retirement. And one day out of the blue a little over a year ago, I got a call from the principal of acquire tax credits, and, and he wanted to interview me and, you know, the mortgage business because rates were going up was a little bit on the slow side. And, and, you know, he piqued my interest, talking about, you know, tax credits and dealing with professionals, you know, you know, doctors of all types and whatnot. And, and so I thought of it as a great opportunity to, to work with people who, who would be open and receptive to, you know, seeing how we can save them significant amounts of money with the tax credit. And then also, you know, they’d be people that would have the opportunity to be able to, you know, take some of the advice that we offer and the plans that we work on with them to be able to set themselves up for a successful retirement.
Bill Fukui 4:10
Oh, that sounds great. You had mentioned, you know, tax credits, and, you know, a significant amount, when you say significant amount in terms of tax credits. And that may be different than, say, tax write offs and stuff. Right. So that-
Jed Wunderli 4:26
Bill Fukui 4:26
may be a difference there, correct?
Jed Wunderli 4:28
Yeah, a big difference between a deduction and a credit, credit is dollar for dollar. And what we found, well, first of all, the first time that we work with the doctor on their tax credits, we, we typically, there’s some times that we don’t just for various reasons, but more often than not, we typically work on the current tax year, like so right now here in the middle of 2023. Doctors who haven’t filed their 2022s because many of them I’ll you know, on the on the late period, we’re still working on ’22 as the current year. And then we also typically go back and grab, as, you know, help amend as many years as we can. And so depending on when they filed their ’19, we might still be able to get ’19 done, but also ’20 and ’21. So what we’ve seen is that when I say significant, you know, it’s like, that’s a, that’s a different number for everybody in their head. Yeah. To try to quantify that if for a doctor that has maybe a million dollars in gross revenue annually, the we’re looking at probably somewhere around 170 to 250, somewhere in that ballpark, for their first tax credit with all those years in there. And, you know, for obviously, for bigger offices, like I did, I did a tax credit for a general dentist that I met at the AGD last year, it was my first conference that I went to, and they their gross revenue was about 2.1 million. And, you know, we ended up doing, computing that their tax credit based on all the things the information that we got from him was about somewhere in the 350 to 370 range. So significant. That’s my significance.
Bill Fukui 6:24
You know, what, I don’t think there’s anybody watching this, this program that would not consider that significant dollars, right?
Jed Wunderli 6:33
Now that can that number can vary quite a bit, because because the way it’s quantified is it’s based on on the wages of the, of the doctors and their assistants involved in each qualified research activity, as well as the supply costs. And so, you know, if you’re working with a doctor who pays themselves a rather high wage, they’re obviously going to have a lot more of a credit than somebody who kind of minimizes the wages that they’re paid, and takes it in distributions instead. So.
Bill Fukui 7:03
Yeah, no, I think that that, so let’s maybe get into a little bit more of this tax credit, what what is it that that qualifies somebody to get a tax credit? And what kind of due diligence or the research that you guys need to do in order for, you know, a client to submit and have any expectations of qualifying for the tax credits?
Jed Wunderli 7:35
Okay, great question. So, so let me maybe I should start off with a little background as to, you know, a lot of people say, you know, hear research and experimentation tax credit. And a lot of times, you know, they’re thinking about well, I did that when I was in college, when I was going to med school and whatnot. And it’s not, it’s not the laboratory kind of a research, it’s more of, you know, what are you doing it your practice to be innovative to always be trying to improve patient care. So, so just a little history on the tax credit: in 1981, the Congress came out with a tax credit for companies like you know, big pharma, who are trying to find cures for cancer and heart disease, and you know, major medical, things like that. And over the years, what they found is that, hey, we’d like to maybe modify this, the tax credit so that smaller businesses can take advantage of this. So in 2003, they made a change that went from new to the world to new to the practice or business. And then in 2015, the Path Act was passed. And in the Path Act, they had the IRS four part test, and with the IRS four part test, we’re able to say, okay, if you meet these four things, then you would, then that specific activity would qualify. And what we found is that most doctors who aren’t too specialized, like if you’re an endodontist, and all you do is that, then you’re probably going to have one activity. But for a general dentist or you know, many others that have 4, 5, 6, 10 services, and they’re always doing things to try to improve patient care within each of those services. They’re probably going to have as many qualified research activities, and all, of course, all the related expenses that go along with that.
Bill Fukui 9:40
So that would, so kind of put that into perspective, or maybe not dentistry, but what about, say plastic surgery, dermatology, you know, med spa types of you know,
Jed Wunderli 9:52
Bill Fukui 9:54
That offer, you know, a menu of different technologies and services. I think this is probably one of the biggest growing areas, for most say board certified plastic surgeons is to really grow the non surgical aesthetic side of thebusiness.
Jed Wunderli 10:13
Bill Fukui 10:14
You know, and that kind of stuff.
Jed Wunderli 10:15
So, so we have a number of clients who are plastic slash cosmetic surgeons. And I’ve, I’ve got, you know, it’s almost like that’s become my specialty, I somehow wind up with a bunch of them, and we’ve gone to a number of the conferences and love working with them, and trying to do a, put, you know, some of the things that I’m learning into practice myself so that I don’t look a lot older than my wife does. But, but the, so yes, we have, for instance, I have a client, who is a plastic surgeon out of San Diego, he specializes in the head and the neck. And he had 12 qualified research activities. And his annual, you know, his annual credit is about 170,000. Now, he’s got a fairly large practice. And that’s just his part, his his, he’s got an associate doctor that does the body and we’ve got, you know, something else going for that. But, you know, you talked about med spas, and I have a client who I met at a at a conference, one of the many, you know, conferences for, you know, cosmetics that I’ve been to, and she, she’s in Florida, and she has two, two med spas, and we just did finish her tax credit about three weeks ago or so. And she got a credit look for about two and a half years, three years of credits for a little over 200,000. So, you know, that’s a great way, when you have a, you know, a credit that size or anywhere close that’s significant. You know, it’s a great way to be able to, one either do a little something fun with it for yourself, or, and or be able to put it back in your business, you know, get that get that next level piece of equipment, that’s going to improve your patient care, because the main question that we ask is, have you done anything in the last three to five years, within your practice, to improve patient care. So what we’re looking for is, is doctors who are always trying to stay at the cutting edge, you know, and when I go on people’s websites, when I go on to doctors websites, and I see that, hey, we have the latest technology, we’re on the cutting edge, we’re at the forefront of technology, all those kinds of things, that makes me think right off the bat, that they are going to have qualified research activities, because they are doing what they can to improve that patient care.
Bill Fukui 13:05
You know, and I think I mean, in the in the true spirit, in the true spirit of the tax credit, it really is just that it’s not necessarily Oh, how can I pocket more money? It is what can we do to build practices that are, you know, innovative, that that’s offering more things, and to provide some financial resources for you to make that, those investments because we all know that, you know, when we’re investing in $150,000, you know, piece of equipment, it, whether it’s a laser, ultrasound, whatever technology it is, it’s a barrier for practices, right? So if it allows us to expand our repertoire of offerings, of, you know, building more lifetime patients into the practice, I think all of those things, I think it’s a great opportunity to do those things, not just oh, well, I get some some extra money here. It really is, what can we do to rebuild and re-retool our practice? And grow it in ways that, you know, we probably wouldn’t do otherwise?
Jed Wunderli 14:18
Well, you know, Bill, that’s, that’s exactly right. And, and that’s kind of one of my favorite things about what I do is that, you know, once they get a taste of, you know, for instance, if a doctor has a tax credit of 400,000, he can buy 2, 3, 4, 5 pieces of expensive equipment and really, you know, change what he’s able to do, improve what he’s able to do in a significant way for his patients, including not just improving current activities, that and services that he’s providing, but maybe adding some new ones and, and so, and when you get the bug, you know, like we’ve, you know, had had doctors now that have been with us for a number of years now, again, this is you ask the about the history, for this kind of tax credit, it’s relatively new, because it came out, you know, in the, with the Path Act in 2015. But, but when you get doctors now seeing how much they can get back in the form of a tax credit, because they are trying to improve their, their patient care what they can do for their patients, then they’re thinking, Okay, next year, I’m gonna get roughly, if my tax credit this year was 174, this one year, I should get another 170, give or take back next year, and then I can get this piece of equipment. And so it’s, it’s like a bug almost, it’s, it’s, uh, you know, it’s just a great incentive. And that’s what Congress has, you know, their intent was was to incentivize doctors to be able to, and people that on med spas, you know, everybody, you know, medical professionals, who are trying to help, you know, their patients with a variety of needs, whether it’s cosmetic, or whether it’s, you know, purely for health reasons, or whatever, all of those things qualify. And, and last year, toward the end of last year, the Congressional Budget Office came out and said, Look, our budgets about $55.8 billion a year. And last year, we only utilized about 8.78 point 8 billion of that. And so they implored us to, you know, to utilize more of that so that their budgets not cut, because we all know that if we’re not utilizing the budget, then Congress is going to want to decrease that, and, you know, put it somewhere else.
Bill Fukui 16:54
Put it somewhere else. Yeah. Yeah, no, I think that’s, that’s, you know, and I was surprised when I, when you kind of mentioned it, to me brought this up to my attention. First time I ever heard about it. So it really is more of a, just a lack, It’s not that physicians or entrepreneurs aren’t looking to take advantage, they just don’t know.
Jed Wunderli 17:19
Right. Right. And, you know, it’s, it’s, that’s a very common reaction we get, you know, and they don’t they, you know, a lot of them say, we’re not doing any research in our business. And it’s like, well, think of it this way, are you making iterative modifications, just small modifications, to any of your services that you offer your patients, whereby they, with the intent of improving the outcome for that patient, and if you’re doing that, then you would qualify under the IRS four part test that was implemented with the path act in 2015, for the tax credit, and then it’s just a matter of monetizing it by seeing what the wages are of all the people involved in the specific qualified research activities, as well as you know, whatever, you know, supply expenses are involved in that. And it includes, like this, the wage expense includes also doctors who, who have like associate doctors, but aren’t W2 and they 1099 them, you know, that kind of thing. It’s contract, contract expenses. So, so really, there’s, and that’s very common for us to have doctors that one are either paying other doctors in their practice W2, or in many cases is 1099. So they can take advantage of all of those things that way, and, you know, doctors who are looking for ways to improve, you know, the outcomes for their patients are, those are the ones that, you know, this credit is for.
Bill Fukui 19:02
Right? Okay, so, have okay, let’s say I gotta I gotta practice. And, and I’m looking at man, they’re, they’re, they’re attending conferences, they’re investing in new technologies or want to add, you know, pages on new services that they’re, you know, oh, we need a page on this new laser or on this new treatment, you know, those kinds of things. Those are obviously, you know, documented great opportunities for for this. What’s the timeframe? What is if somebody’s interested in taking advantage of that? How long does this process take to go through? What’s the expectation?
Jed Wunderli 19:47
Well, so because of the way we do it, it’s not super fast. You know, we’ve worked with two different tax attorneys and and they both well, the one specializes in defending Research and Experimentation Tax Credits. And the other one is a tax attorney who is a CPA beforehand, and, you know, very knowledgeable. And so we’ve done a lot of consulting with them. And what we found is that in order to make sure that we do it right, and that they’re protected, now, the audit rate for, for doing the credit is from, according to Moss Adams, who’s a big CPA firm, they said, it’s about the same as an S corp. So it’s not a super high, it’s very vanilla. Most of the numbers, even the big ones aren’t big enough to really, you know, like, get the light going and getting the excitement going for IRS agents. We’ve had a couple of, of clients of ours who have gotten audited, and because of the report that we produce, that and our report is designed to address every hot point that the IRS looks at in an audit of a research and experimentation tax credit. So we’ve spell it out for them very clearly of how how each activity qualifies as a research activity. And so we haven’t had any issues yet with any of that. But, but this, but the tax attorneys have told us how important it is for proper substantiation. So we have a medical writing staff who, who interviews them, it starts off with an interview from me where I can get some mostly basic information from them relative to what they’re doing that that they’ve changed over the last three to five years. Because if they’re doing the same thing, that they’ve been doing exactly the same thing for the last 10 years, then they’re not going to qualify. But even if they’re making just little changes, and when they get, when they buy a nice piece of equipment. And now they’re using that for some services and whatnot, that’s obviously going to qualify, but it’s also then three years down the road, when they upgrade the software or a new piece comes out for that equipment to help it do more things or other things better or whatever, that also starts the clock over again. So most of the studies that we knew are three to five years, five years for the bigger things. And so, so it’s it’s important to note that, that we go through that interview process with me initially, and the doctor, talking about what what are the services that you offer, have you made iterative modifications in that, that might qualify for a research activity, then we look at all those things that they give us and see if it passes the four part test. At that point, once once he and I, or she and I are done talking for the first time, I’m going to have them, we’ll send an email, where they give us permission to talk to their CPA, because we want to make sure the CPA is familiar with this and that they understand how it works and what we do and that type of thing. Because we need to get you know, typically some documents from the CPA documents from their bookkeeper, you know, for, you know, payroll, and you know, the supply expenses and things like that. And then they have one more interview, we try to keep the total time for the doctor down, you know, somewhere between two hours and 15 minutes to three hours. Because we want it to be us doing the work, we want them focusing on what they do best. But we do need to get you know certain information from them so that we can make sure that we one maximize their tax credit. And to do it right, so that it’s defensible, in case they do, you know, have an audit come up. Both of the audits I was talking about before it was a general audit. And when they do a general audit, they look at everything within that tax return and passed with flying colors. So, you know, after after we’ve talked to the CPA, then there’s an interview with our medical writing staff and our analyst. And they write a great report. None of its ever, you know, cookie cutter kind of stuff. It’s not it’s not boilerplate, you know, each report is written specifically for that doctor and the services that he or she provides and and our analysts make sure that the numbers are accurate. And and then from there, once we’re done, we review everything with the doctor, make sure they feel good about it. And then and then from there, it’s you know, that’s to start the process to getting that money back for him.
Bill Fukui 24:35
Okay. So listening to you, in terms of, as I am not as familiar with this. It’s not something that a doctor or practice should, you know, go to their, their CPA their their current tax, and talk to them about doing this because they’re not going to be familiar with documentation. and other things associated with it. So it’s not something that I would that you would recommend just, oh, just have, I’ll just have my tax guy take care of this, you know, look into this.
Jed Wunderli 25:12
Oh, that’s, that’s a great question. And a great point, the CPAs are a lot more familiar with tax credits from the manufacturing side. And what we’ve found, and I can’t tell you how many different CPAs I’ve spoken with, who have thanked me and Aquire and my team that I work with, for and lots of credit to my team, because I got a great team that makes everybody look good. But, you know, they’ve, they’ve thanked us for being able to have the special, you know, the expertise to be able to do these things. Because, one, it takes a lot of manpower and hours to produce the kind of report that we do to substantiate the credit. And then, and then the other thing is, is that, you know, CPAs, they’re working on tax returns, nonstop, you know, right now, right on through September and October for those filing late. And, and they just don’t have time to document things, nor do they typically have the manpower or expertise to do that kind of thing. So I was, I had delivered a report to a CPA and, and we with the CPAs, we also provide the 6765, which is a form that has the numbers that they need to amend prior year’s return, they just take it off that form and go ahead and put it in their software. And then it’s pretty easy for them at that point. But what we’ve also done, what we also do is provide the IRS summary sheet, so we try to make it as easy for the CPA as possible. And so what happens is the CPAs, that I’ve talked to recently, when we when we delivered those items and a copy of the report as well, they saw that and one guy, one guy said to me, he’s like holy cow, he says I was already very impressed with everything that I was seeing out of you, you know, in your follow up and in your hearing, you know, talking to my client, what they were saying. But when he saw the report, he’s like, yeah, I’d have no problem defending the tax credit, with the, you know, with the IRS and an audit. And we’ve gotten that numerous times. In fact, we found one of our tax attorneys, because a client of ours was getting, they had a very large practice, they were getting a $4 million tax credit. And he said, you know, this is great, but I want to make sure that I’m not gonna get in trouble with the IRS. So he says, I want to have a tax attorney review this report, and kind of sign off on it and give me the okay, so he found this tax attorney, one of the ones that we use, and he says he had him review it paid, paid the tax attorney on his own dollar. And the tax attorney contacted us and said, Hey, if I had this report, I would never lose a case. And so so we’ve, I’ve heard that a few times. And it’s, and it’s always very satisfying, it doesn’t get old. And and it’s you know, it just verifies when I already think about our medical writing staff that they do a heck of a job. I’m happy to share a sample report that we have with with any of your, your folks listening to this so that they can see. And we show that and along with a couple of other things in our initial interview, giving them the background of this whole process. So.
Bill Fukui 28:44
Well, that sounds great. Do me a favor, Jed. You’ve been great about sharing a lot of the details, some of the ins and outs of this research and development, you know, tax credit. If somebody is interested to maybe look into this, how can they get a hold of you?
Jed Wunderli 29:02
Well, they can call me on my cell or they can text me at 702-812-1214, when we actually talk on you know, have our initial interview, I do that on my office phone because we want to record everything so that we make sure we get all the facts straight. And my writing team likes that so that they can go back and listen to it and make sure that I didn’t miss anything. The other thing the other way they can get a hold of me as firstname.lastname@example.org which is A-C-Q-I-R-E-W-C, for wealth collective, .com.
Bill Fukui 29:43
Super, and then for information is there, what kind of business name the website well, how can they kind of learn more?
Jed Wunderli 29:51
Yeah, so we have a nice little, a nice little web, web page they can go to that. gives a nice little background on, on the tax credit, and you know, answers, hopefully some questions for them. I’m not a super pushy salesman kind of guy. So I just love talking about it, you know, with people because I believe in it. But I’m not, you know, I’m not a, you know, some, some people would think, um, I shouldn’t be a salesman, because I’m so not pushy, but I’m happy for them to call me and ask I’ll answer any questions. But if they wanted to go to a website, we have, it’s https://acquiretaxcredits.com/ And, you know, a lot of information there as well.
Bill Fukui 30:35
Well, that sounds great. And thank you, again, for sharing this information. I know, this is different than a lot of the other, you know, webinars and information that we’ve shared, which is more marketing, related, but I think that it kind of goes hand in hand, as long as we’re helping prof, practices be more profitable. So they can continue to invest not only just in technology, but in marketing, I mean, our goal is to help practices, be able to have the opportunities of choice, right, we want to give them choices. And if you don’t have the financial opportunity to do it, you’re limited in the choices that you’re able to make, it’s kind of like what I tell my kids, we work hard, we do things up front, so that we can enjoy the choices that, you know, we’re allotted in life. Because if you don’t have choices, you know, life isn’t a lot of fun.
Jed Wunderli 31:34
Right? Right. You know, Bill, you make a great point, I don’t want to, you know, hold you too much longer. But you know, I think that what you just said, is gold, because, you know, when we’re able to free up a significant amount of money, whatever that may be for a practice, and it’s going to vary widely depending on you know, one the size of the practice and two the wages and the supply expense, all that kind of stuff. But whatever significant amount of money we can free up, you know, it’s going to do a couple of things. One, if for people who want to grow their practice, you know, they can take part of that and reinvest it with you to help them get more clients which, which grows their revenue base, to allow them to have a larger tax credit, to get more state of the art equipment to get more state of the art training for them and their, and their staff. So that ultimately, they can grow their their practice even further. And what I like to see is I like to see the docs who are most concerned about improving that patient care, grow so they can serve more clients because the more people who get the best care, the better off we are.
Bill Fukui 32:53
Now and at the end of the day, as much marketing as I say, you know, as much as my business is in marketing, it’s, it’s good practices, build their practices from the inside out, and it is through referrals and you get referrals with great outcomes, and you get the best outcomes when you have the best protocols, and quite frankly the best technology so, all works together my friend so,
Jed Wunderli 33:21
Bill Fukui 33:23
Thank you again for joining me today Jed and for all the great information and I’ll, I’ll be posting this and sharing this with with others and hopefully we can spread the word about the opportunities here.
Jed Wunderli 33:36
Hey Bill, I appreciate your time and appreciate you having me and, and I hope that we can help lots of people grow their practice with with our team effort here.
Bill Fukui 33:46
That sounds great. Have a great day Jed.
Jed Wunderli 33:49
You do the same Bill. Take care now.
Bill Fukui 33:51
Jed Wunderli 33:51
MSD Insider 33:52
Thanks for joining us for the MedShark Insider with Bill Fukui! Join us next week for another dive into all things medical marketing. All episodes can be streamed at https://medsharkdigital.com/medshark-insider/