Couples who are getting married this year already know there are plenty of big and small details when planning a wedding. Along with the dress, cake, guest list and gift registry, their first tax return as a married couple should also be on their checklist. The IRS has tips and tools to help newlyweds and taxpayers consider how marriage may affect their taxes and be helpful once the wedding is over.
Here are five easy steps offered by the Internal Revenue that can make filing their first tax return as newlyweds less stressful, it said in a news release.
Step 1: Taxpayers should check their withholding at the beginning of each year, or when their personal circumstances change — like after getting married. Using the IRS Withholding Calculator is a good way for taxpayers to check their withholding. Taxpayers who need to change their withholding should complete and submit a new Form W-4, Employee’s Withholding Allowance Certificate to their employer.
Step 2: Marriage may mean a change in your name. If either – or both – of the newlyweds legally change their name, it’s important to report that change to the Social Security Administration. The names on the taxpayers’ tax return must match the names on file at the SSA. If it doesn’t, it could delay any refund.
Step 3: If a marriage means a change in address, the IRS and the U.S. Postal Service need to know. Newlyweds can file Form 8822, Change of Address, to update their mailing address with the IRS. They should notify the postal service to forward their mail by going online at USPS.com or by visiting their local post office, the IRS reports.
Step 4: Taxpayers who receive advance payments of the premium tax credit should report changes in circumstances to their Health Insurance Marketplace as they happen. Certain changes to household, income or family size may affect the amount of the premium tax credit. This can affect a tax refund or the amount of tax owed. Taxpayers should also notify the Marketplace when they move out of the area covered by their current Marketplace plan, the IRS said.
Step 5: Newlyweds should consider their filing status. A taxpayer’s marital status on December 31 determines whether they are considered married for that full year. Generally, the tax law allows married couples to file their federal income tax return either jointly or separately in any given year. Taxpayers can use the Interactive Tax Assistant to determine which status is best for them and which option they want to use.
After you’re married you will have plenty to worry about but with these simple tips and suggestions regarding taxes from the Internal Revenue might help you and your new spouse get head in the long run.