When you’re married, you have a lot to think about when it comes to money and managing finances, including whether to file your taxes jointly or separately. Learn the advantages of filing jointly versus separately, and how filing taxes separately can affect your taxes.
Most married couples choose to file jointly to take advantage of tax credits and deductions. Some of the more common credits and deductions that are available for married couples, but either are not available or are not as advantageous for taxpayers who are married and filing separately include:
“You’ll usually pay more in taxes when you file separately, which is the deciding factor for most people.”
Marriage can affect taxes in many ways. While everyone’s situation is different, there are some tax benefits of marriage that help you pay less taxes. Plus, you’ll have tax options as spouses that single filers don’t. Other tax changes after marriage are related to paperwork you should complete.1
As you become familiar with the different processes of tax filing when you’re married, be aware of how your tax situation could change in the future. Changes in your combined income, qualifications for additional tax credits, or an increase in debt will influence your tax filing. If you were ever to separate, choosing to file taxes separately will avoid any liability relating to your soon-to-be-ex’s finances.
There isn’t one right answer for every married couple when it comes to your taxes. How you choose to file together depends on your personal circumstances and many variables surrounding income, debt, expenses, and liabilities. The best course of action is usually to file jointly as a married couple and claim as many credits as you can, but if you think you could save money by filing separately, consult with a tax professional.
1 “How Does Marriage Affect Taxes?” H&R Block. HR Block
This material is for informational purposes only. Neither New York Life nor its agents provide tax, legal, or accounting advice. Please consult your own tax, legal, or accounting professional before making any decisions.