Post # 1
This is for any CPAs on the boards or anyone else who did this…
So I am getting married in October which means I will be “married” for purposes of 2013 taxes, right?
So should I go ahead and change my filing status on my W4 to “married”? I just did the paycheck calculator thing and it’s a BIG difference… $300/paycheck or $600/month. I’d much rather put that in a savings account than have to get a refund next year… but am I legally allowed to say I’m married before I actually get married in October?
I know the risk is if I don’t end up getting married things will be an issue when it comes time to file as I’d owe money, but I don’t think that’s a risk for FI and me…
Did anyone else tackle this?
ETA: I am NOT talking about filing my taxes this year for 2012. I mean changing my witholding status on my W4 for what is taken out of my current and present paychecks for federal and state taxes.
Post # 3
You’re always doing the taxes for the previous year. So upon tax season right away, you are filing for 2012. You were not married in 2012 therefore you don’t claim as married. In 2014, when filing for 2013 taxes, you can file as married.
Post # 4
@PuntaCanaBride: No. I meant on my W4 for withholding this year.
Post # 5
@classyashley: You will be married for the year 2013, but those taxes you won’t be dong until early 2014.
The taxes everyone is doing now is for 2012, so you are single for those.
You don’t HAVE to change your W4s. H and I left ours as Single/1 and we’re getting $200 back for our first married year, which is just right for us (didn’t want to owe or get a huge refund). A tax lady on here suggested we change one of ours to Married/1 to hopefully break even more. Use the withholdings calculator (which is down on IRS.gov) to help you decided what to change if anything.
Post # 6
I have been thinking about this – yes, I think it would make sense to change W4 witholdings/status at the beginning of the year you are getting married in, because your entire income for the year will be taxed under that new status. Depending on your finances, it can make a BIG difference.
Post # 7
I did! If you get married on Dec 31 2013 you enjoy the same tax benefits as getting married on Jan 1 2013, there is no prorate. So I may as well start enjoying those benefits now instead of getting a bigger refund – you are right that there is no sense in giving the government an interest free loan all year when you can earn interest in a savings account! Actually, some people purposely withold less than they need to, and put that money into interest bearing investments until tax time. You still have to pay, but you (hopefully) made 5% on the money all year!
But full disclosure I am not a CPA… But I am a finance nerd.
Post # 8
You can change your withholding to whatever you want. All that matters is that you give the right amount of tax payment come tax day.
Post # 10
Wow – $600 a month is a big change. Did you prorata your tax withholding to see if only changing in October would let you even out? Another option would be to adjust your withholdings now to Single and 2, which would allow you to have less withheld, but not choose married yet.
Feel free to PM me if you want some help with figuring out a prorata. I’m an MBA student studying federal taxation, so I can help you figure out the numbers if you want.
Post # 11
i didn’t change my withholding on my W-4. you don’t have to. i kept it at S/0 because i like to get a refund back (i know it gets no interest but honestly, DH and i aren’t great at putting money into savings throughout the year. this way, we put a chunk of money in savings at one time and it’s good for us to learn to live on less money- i.e. we get more taken out of our paychecks).
Post # 12
@houstonwhodat: “enjoying the benefits”
LOL! Unless FI and I do something to reduce tax liability (significantly increase his 401k or something), we’re actually slated to pay 35% more in tax after being married on exactly the same income. Totally sucks.
Post # 13
You literally can do whatever you want to your withholding. You can claim 99 if you want. Just remember you’re responsible for the taxes come filing time in 2014.
@calibee79: Did the same thing. I don’t like messing with my taxes. And I’m a Generalist, I see so many people do stupid stuff with their taxes like every other week, I know they owe big time at the end of the year. If I had the time, I would figure out the withholding that would make me come out at 0 at the end of the year.
Post # 14
Yeah, my dad would claim like 6 in his latter years! Yes he owed back taxes time and when he died he left that mess to my mom. What an idiot.
Post # 15
@NAvery: Yes, we are complaining about the marriage pentaly too because it just doesn’t make sense and will eventually lead to us paying much more. Also just the concept of penalizing the family unit… but I will avoid my soap box 🙂 Anyway 35% seems higher than what I’d expect – ouch!! However, FI starts grad school soon so for most of the year we only have to worry about one taxable income. If I’ve researched everything correctly, my effective rate should actually decrease upon marriage since it’s one income now supporting two.