(Closed) File taxes jointly or separately?

posted 5 years ago in Money
Post # 2
Member
888 posts
Busy bee

I would have your accountant run the numbers individually then as a martied couple and see which is less. Some years it comes out less for us to file jointly, others individually. It depends on your deductions and the tax exemptions for the given year.  One year it was a $7000 difference for us to file individually, another year it was only a $600 difference but amy money I can keep instead of giving to Uncle Sam (already in 38% tax bracket) is fantastic! 

Post # 3
Member
9555 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

I would ask an accountant on this one. Normally you’re better off filing together, but since he doesn’t have taxes automatically taken out I’m not sure how that would work.

Although I can say that DH’s loans have not changed at all due to being married.

Post # 4
Member
3778 posts
Honey bee

jwdesiree:  I would do a dry run and look at the numbers both ways. My husband is a student, but owns a condo in a different state. Last year, we were in a lower tax bracket if we filed jointly for federal, but ended up owing money if we filed jointly in the two states. We ended up filing joint for federal and separately for state. It’s too hard to say without crunching the numbers which way it will go.

Post # 5
Member
636 posts
Busy bee

 

Are your student loans on an income based repayment plan? If so, then your filing status could change your payment amounts. If you are *not* on an income based repayment plan, then it won’t matter at all.

If you are using TurboTax or TaxCut, you could always take the tax software, run it once as joint and then once as separate and just see where the numbers fall out. No one is going to be able to predict which is better for you – it depends if you are making use of deductions that are disallowed under MFS, or if you are trying to meet a minimum floor for other deductions, etc.

 

Post # 7
Member
6117 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

jwdesiree:  When filing separately, neither can itemize taxes.  I agree the TurboTax dry run can help you analyze things.

Post # 8
Member
13702 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

Obviously consult a tax pro on this but my experience has been that filing separately is the better way to go with large student loan balances.  DH and I do this because he has large payments, and if we file jointly, they will consider my salary for repayment, without considering my own student loan debt (they will consider if we consolidate, but we don’t want to do that).

Filing separately means you are not eligible to deduct student loan interest, though.  That was the only drawback we had, and it was minor in the grand scheme of things.

Post # 9
Member
13702 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

sienna76:  That’s not true. Filing separately means you both are obligated to file in the same manner (either itemized, or standard) — but you can do either.  DH and Ifile separately and itemize our taxes.  I wish I could take the standard and deduct everything on his, but it doesn’t work that way.  As soon as he itemizes, I’m obligated to– and turbotax will make sure of that.

Post # 10
Member
706 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

JiminyCricket:  Darling Husband and I file jointly and while they do consider both incomes, they most certainly consider both of our student loan debt, as well.

Post # 11
Member
13702 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

melisandescott:  Perhaps it’s a policy of the company that has his loans.  We specifically asked, and they said they only consider my loans if I’ve consolidated them with his.  Since I’m on a manageable 10 year plan, it would be foolish and financially irrespnsible for me to consolidate into a 30 year plan. 

Post # 12
Member
706 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

JiminyCricket:  Ours are federal loans, so that should apply to all.  Are yours private loans?

Post # 14
Member
706 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

JiminyCricket:  Interesting.  I thought it was a federal thing, not a per company thing.

Post # 15
Member
5884 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: April 2013

jwdesiree:  Keep in mind that filing as “single” and filding as “married filing seperately” are two VERY different status.  Generally, it is not fincially adventagous to file as “married filing seperately,” but you should use a tax program or an accountant to run the numbers in your situation and see.

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