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Tax Planning/Should we file jointly



My husband and I were married in February of this year, we had been told that in our tax bracket filing separately would be more beneficial. Because of this, when I started my new job in March I filed as "Married, but withhold at higher single rate" and come to find out my husband never updated his information from single. So my question can we still file jointly because doing the math now, filing that way would be more beneficial.

Thank you for any help.

Reka - The short answer to your question is "yes" you can file jointly.

I would say that whomever gave you the advice to file separately as a general statement was dead wrong.  As long as the tax code stays the way it is (and there is not change to the tax brackets for 2012), the overwhelming majority of taxpayers who are married are better off filing jointly.  Filing separately limits many of the deductions you may be entitled to.

What will happen if you have overwithheld is that you will just get a bigger refund.

I hope this helps!

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As an Enrolled Agent, I am fully capable of providing tax advice as it relates to personal and business income taxes. Enrolled Agents are the only Federally licensed tax practitioners and are admitted to practice before all administrative functions of the IRS. My specialty is working with small business owners who file Schedule "C" and helping them to structure their business in such a way as to maximize as many tax advantages as possible. I also enjoy working with individuals who have both routine as well as complex tax situations. I prefer to concentrate on individuals and small business tax planning.


I have a 25 year background in financial services including tax, bookkeeping, insurance, real estate and securities. I was previously the Chief Financial Officer of a local and national franchise organization. I am currently semi-retired, but used to own (in partnership with another EA) an individual and small business financial engineering firm where I work with nearly 2,500 individuals and small business owners in nearly every state and almost every continent, assisting them in all aspects of their tax and financial well-being. I have prepared or reviewed more than 8,000 tax returns in my career.

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