Rita and Joe, My Wonderful In-Laws, On Their Wedding Day, June 23,1950
The excitement, joy and anticipation of getting married can be almost overwhelming. With the planning that goes into the wedding it is easy to overlook the tax implications of marriage. Although taxes are probably not high on your summer wedding plan checklist, it is important to be aware of the tax changes that come along with marriage. Here are some basic tips that can help keep those issues under control.
The names and Social Security numbers on your tax return must match your Social Security Administration (SSA) records. If you change your name, it is imperative to report it to the SSA.
Change Income Tax Withholding:
A change in your marital status means you must give your employer a new Form W-4, Employee’s Withholding Allowance Certificate.
If you and your spouse both work, your combined incomes may move you into a higher tax bracket. Use the IRS Withholding Calculator tool at IRS.gov to help you complete a new Form W-4. See Publication 505, Tax Withholding and Estimated Tax, for more information.
To avoid problems and to get specific advice speak with your tax adviser.
Changes In Circumstances:
Marriage can have an impact on insurance. It is important that you report changes in circumstances, such as changes in your income or family size, to your health insurance company (or Health Insurance Marketplace). You should also notify your insurance company when you move out of the area covered by your current insurance plan.
Let the IRS know if your address changes.
You should also notify the U.S. Postal Service. You can ask them online at USPS.com to forward your mail. You may also report the change at your local post office.
Change In Filing Status:
If you’re married as of December 31, that’s your marital status for the entire year for tax purposes. You and your spouse can choose to file your federal income tax return either jointly or separately each year.
Note: Once married, neither of you can file using single status.
Generally and in most cases, married filing jointly results in a lower amount of taxes due. However, you may want to figure the tax both ways to find out which status results in the lowest tax.
Filing Status For Same-Sex Couples:
If you are legally married in a state or country that recognizes same-sex marriage, you generally must file as married on your federal tax return. This is true even if you and your spouse later live in a state or country that does not recognize same-sex marriage. See Same-Sex Marriage Tax Guide: 16 Essential Tax Rules and Tips for a more detailed discussion. Continue reading