My taxable income is considerably less (I receive SS and state disability), and I have always deducted my medical expenses (10% or so of my income), which I could no longer do. We own a home together but have no mortgage.
The easiest way is to prepare your return both ways and file the way that is most advantageous. Typically married filing jointly is more advantageous than married filing separately.
As a general rule, your income tax liability will be less by filing as Married Filling Jointly. However, in certain situations your income tax liability will be less by filing as Married Filing Separately. The specific situations where it is advantageous to file as married Filing Separately occur where
spouse #1 has higher income than spouse #2, and spouse #2 has either: lots of medical expenses, or lots of investment fees, or lots of unreimbursed employee business expenses, or lots of casualty or disaster losses.
MOST IMPORTANT is that your tax attorney/accountant runs the numbers both ways and determines which filing status is best for that particular client.
2) Where spouse #1has much higher income but spouse #2 has higher will reduce your overall income tax liability
You need to claculate it both ways. Prepare the returns and then decide. If you find the returns to be complicated, engage the services of a CPA to assist you.
This response is not intended to create an attorney client relationship. The response is solely intended to answer the question presented. Additional facts and issues are unknown to the responding attorney. Should you still have questions, legal assistance should be sought by making an appointment to meet with an attorney, rather than attempting to resolve the issue via e mail. This response is merely provided to give direction to assist you in the decision of whether you should contact an attorney or not. If this answer is helpful, or is the best answer please mark it accordingly. Good luck.
I can't answer tax questions but I do want to say congratulations on your marriage. I am pleased NC has joined the ranks of the many states that recognize marriage equality. Happy new year.
I am licensed to practice law only in North Carolina. My answer provides only general information. Do not rely on this answer as specific legal advice for your particular situation. This answer does not form an attorney-client relationship. You should consult with an attorney to fully discuss your situation and to obtain advise about your legal rights and obligations.
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