Whether you’ve just married or are discussing financial arrangements, the question of how to file as a married couple is important for both you and your partner’s finances. Depending on your circumstances, it may be better to file a joint tax return.
For starters, if you’re newly married, you’ll no longer be able to file your taxes as “Single”. Your two options are a married filing joint return or a married filing separately return. Filing jointly combines both your finances and your spouse’s finances. Filing separate returns means you both must file your own tax return, much as you would if you were single--but with different forms and allowable deductions.
Depending on your financial situation, filing a separate return may be beneficial. That being said, filing jointly usually provides the most benefits for married couples.
In short, you’ll most likely receive a larger refund or a larger reduction in your overall taxes due. Here’s a quick breakdown of the benefits you could receive:
There are a few potential issues or downsides to filing together. Some examples include the following:
Unfortunately not. Neither domestic partnerships nor those in civil unions can file jointly. Only legally married partners qualify for these tax benefits.
No. The IRS requires any couple who divorced up through the last day of the year to file a single tax return.
Just got married? Not sure if filing jointly or separately would be more beneficial? Set up a free consultation with one of our Tax Professionals, and we’ll figure out which works best for you.