Importance of Determining Your Tax Filing Status

Figuring out your filing status is the first major step in filing your tax return. Your tax filing status not only will allow you to determine the correct tax (from the Tax Computation Worksheet or appropriate column in the Tax Table), but also it is crucial to understanding your eligibility for and the exact amount of deductions, exemptions, tax credits. For example, in some situations, if your taxable income is close to $160,000, the choice between filing as “single” and filing as “married filing separately” may influence whether you need to pay the alternative minimum tax (“AMT”); it is more likely that filing as “single” will help you avoid AMT, while “married filing separately” status may have the opposite effect. Sometimes, the latter tax filing status may also make you ineligible for certain tax credits even at a much lower income bracket – a situation that may be avoided if you are filing joint tax return with your spouse.

There are five possible tax statuses: 1) single; 2) married filing jointly; 3) married filing separately; 4) head of household, and 5) qualifying widow(er) with dependent child. The benefits and drawbacks of each status differ greatly depending on a tax situation. In some cases, you may be eligible for more than one status (for example, single and head of household); in other cases, your eligibility may be greatly influenced by the choices you make.

In order to draw out the benefits and avoid costly mistakes, careful tax planning is necessary. The Internal Revenue Code (“IRC”) is so complex that it requires a tax professional to fully understand its provisions. Tax attorneys are professionals who usually are in a much better position to legitimately utilize possibilities offered by the IRC.

Sherayzen Law Office is a law firm that offers individual and business tax services. We can help you understand your current tax position, file the tax returns for you, and carefully plan your tax strategies for the future. CALL NOW to start resolving your tax issues!