Getting married brings about a lot of changes. For some, it brings a new home, new name and a new baby. Get ready for another change because it will be your first time to face the IRS as a couple.
Filing tax returns was probably one thing you never gave much thought when you got married. However, it is important for you to understand how getting married affects your taxes.
Here are some tips from the IRS for the newlyweds.
Even if you were married on the last day of the year, December 31, the IRS still consider you as married for the entire year. But if you got married on the last day of the tax year, then you can file as single or head of household.
Filing jointly vs filing separately
Now that you’re married, you only have 2 choices: either file as married filing jointly or marred filing separately.
In most cases, it makes more sense to file jointly. You’ll probably pay less tax and it’s easier too. But we also need to keep in mind that every couple’s situation is different and there are times when filing a separate return may be a good idea. You can have your accountant run both sets of numbers to determine which filing status will result in lower taxes.
Some couples choose to keep their financial lives separate. If this sounds like you, then you’d be better off filing separately.
Change of name and address
When you file an income tax return, you need to make sure that the name on your form matches your records at the Social Security Administration. That said, it is important that you report the change to the SSA by filling form SS-5.
Also, don’t forget to update your address with the IRS and the U.S. Postal Service if you have moved to a new permanent address. All you need to do is to fill out form 8822 and mail it to the address on the form.