Marriage is a wonderful thing and marks the beginning of a new life together. Many memories will be made, moments shared and traditions formed. One of the earliest traditions you’ll share together is the time-honored process of filing taxes.
Here are 4 things to pay attention to during tax time.
- Personal Information
If you moved, make sure to notify the IRS of your address change by filing IRS Form 8822. Any name changes should be reported to the Social Security Administration so your name and Social Security number match on your tax forms. If they don’t, the IRS will most likely hold your tax refund until the issue is resolved. Fill out form SS-5 and file it at your local Social Security office. If you don’t have time to change your name, you can file using your maiden name, but be sure to take care of the name change by next year. Also, remember to let your employer know of any changes to your name and address so your W-2 arrives on time and in good order.
- Tax Withholdings
Now that your household income has changed, be sure to adjust your tax withholdings. You can do that by completing a new W-4 form at work. Try to get your refund as close to zero as possible so your money makes it to your paycheck where it can have the most benefit.
- Filing Status
Filing as a couple isn’t a lot different from filing as an individual. Report your and your spouse’s incomes and deduct your combine allowable expenses. Most couples find that filing jointly reduces tax bills. The reason being is you will qualify for additional tax benefits with a joint return.
You and your spouse will need to decide whether to itemize or take the standard deduction. The standard deduction for married couples filing jointly is $12,600 for the current tax year. If your individual deductions add up to more than the standard deduction, it may be worth the hassle of itemizing. Common deductions include property taxes, medical expenses, donations to charity, and certain types of interest.
There’s enough to adjust to in marriage without needing to worry about taxes. If you would like to take some of the stress out of the equation, contact our offices in Joplin, MO. Our team of Certified Public Accountants. We are one of the Endorsed Local Providers of Dave Ramsey and can help get you off on the right foot.