Congratulations on your nuptials! All of us at Barker
Business wish you the best of everything in your new life
together¾ including your new tax
status as joint taxpayers. Please allow us to help you start off
on a lifetime of happiness with some great tax advice
especially for newlyweds.
Here are a few simple steps that can save you money and help
keep tax issues from interrupting your newly wedded bliss.
Among those tax-related changes that you should think about
now are notification of change of name and address. Later, as
filing season approaches, you should carefully consider the right
tax return form and filing status to use. These simple
tax-related decisions can help both of you save money and even
prevent problems with missing a refund check. In order to assist
you in making these important tax-related decisions, you should
consider following the recommendations below.
USE YOUR CORRECT NAME
- You must provide your correct names and identification numbers to
claim personal exemptions or the Earned Income Tax Credit on your tax
return(s). If you changed your last name when you were married, you
must let the Social Security Administration (SSA) know to update your
Social Security card so your old number matches your new name. You can
obtain Form SS-5, "Application for a Social Security Card,"
from us or through the SSA website at www.ssa.gov
or by calling the SSA toll-free at (800) 772-1213.
REPORT YOUR CHANGE OF ADDRESS
If either or both of you are changing your address, you should
notify the IRS as well as the U.S. Postal Service to be sure you
receive any tax refunds or IRS correspondence. All you have to do to
notify the IRS of this change is obtain a Form 8822, "Change of
Address Form," from us, which you can then file with the IRS center
where you filed your most recent return. You should also remember to
let your employer(s) know about any changes to your name or address so
you and/or your new spouse can receive your paycheck(s) and W-2(s).
SELECT THE RIGHT FORM
Choosing the right individual income tax form can help save you
money. As newly married taxpayers, you may find that you now have
enough combined deductions to itemize on your tax return rather than
just using the standard deduction, particularly if you are now buying a
new home instead of renting. Deductions for medical care, mortgage
interest, real estate taxes, state income taxes, charitable
contributions, casualty losses and certain miscellaneous expenses,
including preparation fees for your tax return, can reduce your taxes.
If itemizing such deductions will save you money on your taxes, you
should now use Form 1040 whereas you may have been able to use Form
1040EZ when you were single and just using the standard deduction.
CHOOSE THE BEST FILING STATUS
Because your marital status on December 31st of the year
you are filing your tax return for will determine whether you are
considered married, you will have to decide whether to file jointly or
separately. In general, a joint return will allow you to combine your
income and deductions on a single tax return, but both of you must sign
the return and will be held jointly responsible for any tax due.
On the other hand, filing separate returns will allow you to only
be taxed on your own income after allowable deductions, and therefore,
you will only be responsible for your own potential tax liability.
However, if one of you itemizes deductions on their separate return,
the other must also itemize. Figuring the tax both ways can determine
which filing status will result in the lowest tax, but filing jointly
will usually result in the lowest combined tax owed unless you have
fairly equal incomes and deductions. We can help you choose the right
filing status to help you both save the most money on your taxes.
We look forward to assisting you further with any of the above
tax related decisions. Let us know how we can be help. Please
call us today to set up an appointment to review these and any
other concerns you may have.
Very truly yours,
Barker Business Services
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