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Should You Plan to File Taxes Separately or Jointly?

Should You Plan to File Taxes Separately or Jointly?

Financial Organization, Planning, Budgeting

Should You Plan to File Taxes Separately or Jointly?

In most cases married couples file taxes jointly. Even if you and your spouse have dramatically different incomes, tax rates typically work out in favor of filing jointly. But occasionally that might not be the case. Say, for example, that your spouse has a relatively low income but has significant medical expenses this year. In order to claim medical expenses as a deduction, those expenses must exceed 7.5% of gross income. Filing separately could enable your spouse to meet the 7.5% threshold, itemize medical costs, and lower your total tax burden. Don't automatically assume filing jointly is your best bet, especially if you face unusual circumstances during the year. Tax planning is a year-round effort, not just something to do when it's time to file your taxes.

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