Marriage Tax Calculator
Marriage has significant financial implications for the individuals involved, including its impact on taxation. The calculator below can help estimate the financial impact of marriage in terms of federal income tax based on tax rules (2017 tax brackets) and data specific to the United States. For tax purposes, whether a person is classified as married is based on the last day of the tax year, which means that a person married on the last day of the tax year is considered married for the entire year, Similarly a person that is divorced would be considered unmarried for the entire tax year.
Tax laws generally become more complicated after marriage, but marriage can present some opportunities to save additional money (compared to being single). However, under many conditions, the opposite occurs, resulting in married couples paying more in taxes than single, otherwise equivalent, individuals. This is referred to as the marriage penalty in the United States. This penalty can be significant if both individuals in the marriage have very high incomes, since filing jointly can result in being subject to a higher tax bracket than an equivalent income from two single people. Furthermore, having a lower joint income does not necessarily shield a couple from marriage penalties. As a result of their combined incomes being subject to additional restrictions, it is possible for two married individuals with lower incomes to be disqualified from receiving tax credits they would otherwise receive. There are other conditions under which marriage results in a tax penalty. However, situations can and often do change, and while marriage may result in short-term tax penalties, it can potentially have long-term tax benefits. While there are exceptions, and multiple factors are involved, married couples with a single income generally benefit from filing jointly, while dual-income couples may suffer marriage penalties.