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Question for the Money Doctors

Question submitted on Feb 21, 2019.

Question

Newly wed as of 12/01/2018, both of us have outstanding college loans (income driven repayment), the mortgage is in my name only. We both work (me at $48k/yr, spouse at $29k/yr). No children.

Is it better to file married - joint or married - separate?

What should we consider when it comes to W-4 allowances?

Answer

Generally speaking it is usually more advantageous to file married filing jointly, but you should always check just to be sure.  Most software today allows you to enter the data with it coded as taxpayer of spouse, then it will calculate both ways.

I would suggest projecting your 2019 tax liability and adjusting your withholding allowances accordingly.


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