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Tax Planning/Withholding (Form W4)


Hello, I'm starting a new job and I was filling out tax forms and a question came up as to whether I claim zero dependants or I put down 1 for myself. I'm under the impression that if I put down zero I will post in more taxes out of each paycheck and possibly get a refund at tax time, and if I put 1 I would pay in less but possibly get less of a refund or even have to pay in at tax time. do you know which would be more efficient and save me money in the long run?
thank you,



You are correct in general with your assumptions.  Based on other factors like spousal income, itemized deductions, etc you will have to determine which is actually best for your specific situation.  As far as long run savings and efficiency which is your question, it is most efficient to optimize to not owe while keeping your refund low.  By not owing you will save possible penalties and interest and by keeping your refund low you get more in each paycheck which could be saved or invested.  The IRS does not pay you interest on excess withholding for the year.  

Best Regards,

Ryan Hasselmeier
Tax Advisor


Tax Planning

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Ryan Hasselmeier


A degreed accountant with significant experience in taxation compliance and resolution at all levels of government regulation.


Experienced Tax Advisor, Consultant and Preparer for over 15 years. In private practice for nearly 12 years now. Experienced in all areas of taxation: International, Federal, State, Local, etc

Current Chairman of the American Tax Professional Association Inc, a non-profit professional business association of accountants, tax preparers, consultants and advisors who specialize in compliance and representation of taxpayers before federal, state and local government regulators.

Bachelors of Business Administration in Accounting and Management Information Systems from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville Texas.

Awards and Honors
Passed all parts of the Enrolled Agent Certification Examination administered by the Department of the Treasury and a Registered Tax Return Preparer with the Internal Revenue Service.

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