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Tax Tips for Same-Sex Married Couples

Gay MarriageBy Alden Wicker

It's been another banner year for gay rights, with Maine, Maryland and Washington saying "I do," to same-sex marriages. Plus, same-sex marriage legislation is currently moving through the Rhode Island legislature.

But there's still a shadow hanging over the celebrations of these victories: In the eyes of the federal government, couples in legal same-sex marriages are still single.

So regardless of what your state's law says, if you're part of such a couple, when you pay taxes to Washington, you're considered single. (And that's only the beginning. When it comes to Social Security survivor benefits, or getting insurance under the coverage of your federally employed partner, you're also still single.)

There are two things you should know: First, this makes your taxes more complicated, and hence might require you to hire an accountant and/or pay more in fees for them to wade through the situation. Second, according to an analysis by H&R Block, same-sex couples pay as much as $6,000 more in taxes than heterosexual couples.

That certainly shouldn't stop you from getting married. But you probably have questions about what else you need to know if you're a Mrs. and Mrs. or Mr. and Mr. at tax time. We'll walk you through how to do your taxes right:

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TurboTax Articles

Cities with the Lowest Tax Rates

The total amount of tax you pay reaches far beyond what you owe the federal government. Depending on where you live, most likely you're required to pay additional taxes, including property and sales tax. The disparity between the amount of tax you pay in a low-tax city and that in a high-tax city can be dramatic. Living in any of these 10 cities could save you a bundle, although the exact amount may fluctuate based on your income and lifestyle choices.

Cities with the Highest Tax Rates

Much ado is made in the press about federal tax brackets, but cities can carry a tax bite of their own. Even if you live in a state that has no income tax, your city may levy a variety of taxes that could eat away the entire benefit of living in an income tax-free state, including property taxes, sales taxes and auto taxes. Consider all the costs before you move to one of these cities, and understand that rates may change based on your family's income level.

Great Ways to Get Charitable Tax Deductions

Generally, when you give money to a charity, you can use the amount of that donation as a deduction on your tax return. However, not all charities qualify as tax-deductible organizations. While there are many types of charities, they must all meet certain criteria to be classified by the IRS as tax-deductible organizations. There are legitimate tax-deductible organizations in many popular categories, such as those listed below.

A Freelancer's Guide to Taxes

Freelancing certainly has its benefits, but it can result in a few complications come tax time. The Internal Revenue Service considers freelancers to be self-employed, so if you earn income as a freelancer you must file your taxes as a business owner. While you can take additional deductions if you are self-employed, you'll also face additional taxes in the form of the self-employment tax. Here are things to consider as a freelancer when filing your taxes.

Tax Deductions for Voluntary Interest Payments on Student Loans

Most taxpayers who pay interest on student loans can take a tax deduction for the expense ? and you can do this regardless of whether you itemize tax deductions on your return. The rules for claiming the deduction are the same whether the interest payments were required or voluntary.

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You guys should take a roll of quarters and shove them you know where then you won't mess your pants when see your tax return.

February 10 2013 at 10:04 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply

Its always good to know you can count on the hillibillies and ignorant idiots to post their comments. Here is a newsflash for you: No one CARES what you think. You are a dying breed with your homophobia.

February 10 2013 at 11:38 AM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to irishguy32's comment

How sad and unfortunate for you that you had to show your own bigotry to try and get your point across dear. You appear to be quite hostile. Perhaps some anger management counseling might do you some good darling.

February 10 2013 at 4:21 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply

Don't forget to keep all those receipts. Obama and his group of abominations, has issued an executive order allowing the deductibility of KY jelly on all homosexual's tax returns.

February 10 2013 at 10:42 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Marriage always was and always will be because it is Natural between a Man and a Woman. Homosexuals are getting to many privaleges. I only wish that the Animal Rights and Protection Movement could have gotten better positive changes than the homosexual agenda

February 10 2013 at 7:51 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to VegCon's comment

Animal rights protect you don't they

February 10 2013 at 9:19 AM Report abuse -3 rate up rate down Reply

That sign should read "Just Married! To get government benefits".

February 09 2013 at 11:30 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply

don't rely on anything H&R Block says

February 09 2013 at 11:15 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Most accountants have traditional values and morals and wouldn't prepare a tax return for a couple of froot loops.

February 09 2013 at 4:42 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
3 replies to tokenfan's comment