Radio Interview Transcript


 

ANNOUNCER:  Welcome to the Wedding Details Radio brought to you by WeddingDetails.com. Now here’s your host, Damien Allen.  DAMIEN: Good afternoon and welcome to Wedding Details Radio. My name is Damien Allen, and today we are speaking with Dr. Taffy Wagner. Good afternoon and welcome to the program, Dr. Taffy.
 
DR. TAFFY: It is great to be here.
 
DAMIEN: And a pleasure to have you with us as always. 
 
DAMIEN: Today we are going to talk about taxes and the newly married couple and it’s tax time, what is the best piece of advice for a newly married couple can get?
 
DR. TAFFY: I think the best piece of advice I can give them is make sure they choose the correct filing status, and what I mean by that is either they are going to file a joint return or they are going to file separate returns. Married Filing Jointly means they are going to be combining their annual incomes, their deductions would be combined, expenses on that return. So they are more than likely to claim more deductions and that lowers the amount of taxes they have to pay.
 
DAMIEN: How can a couplebest set up their finances so that the tax season goes smoothly?
 
DR. TAFFY: They should get accordion files, I believe, where they are tracking everything they are spending their money on and keeping their receipts. That makes it very easy at the end of the year when they get ready to prepare their taxes, they can pull everything out monthly and say, “Ok, now I can make that ledger and begin to do the paperwork.
 
DAMIEN: Who should prepare the taxes for a newlywed couple? Should they do it themselves, should they hire an accountant?
 
DR. TAFFY: That really depends. If the couple didn’t have a lot of assets, I mean, if they are very newly married and they came in with not a lot of stuff, then they can do them themselves probably like the first couple of years, but as they start to accumulate houses, and assets, then I believe they should go to an accountant, because it takes away a lot of that pressure of oh my gosh did I remember everything, and now somebody else would be able to say, “Ok, what about this, ABC and D?
 
DAMIEN: What would be the best investment for a couple getting a large refund, Dr. Taffy?
 
DR. TAFFY: Damien, I believe because of what is going on with the economy the best investment is for couples to pay off their credit card debt. Especially if they are in a situation where one person is not working, and they have very limited income, they should not go out and shop it up and spend because they haven’t had money, but they should really sit down and say how many bills can we pay off so we are in a better situation so we don’t have to be stressed within the next few months and be able to enjoy and have that breather space.
 
DAMIEN: What if one of the people in the couple has a child that is not necessarily related to the couple itself, you know, if I had a child before I was married to my wife? Does that affect the deduction amount?
 
DR TAFFY: It can, because it depends on; they don’t have full custody or someone else has the custody. It depends on who is claiming the child for that year and so that is something that the couple needs to talk about and be confident of, you know, are you paying child support, what amount is going out, and how much do they get to deduct.
 
DAMIEN: What if one of the partners makes more money than the other?
 
DR: TAFFY: That’s actually a good thing, because that actually happens in a lot of marriages where either the husband makes more than the wife and so it shouldn’t necessarily affect in a negative way. It should be a great thing and they should allow for, you know, if that person makes more the household income is covered and begin putting that money away whether it is in a savings account, IRA, or whatever investment account they have. Go ahead and begin putting that money away; they can think of long term.
 
DAMIEN: Today’s age both parts of the marriage are generally out working, because of the economy, what if one of the spouses is self employed? How would this affect their taxes?
 
DR TAFFY: What it does is they are actually able to claim more deductions, because the business is, if they are self employed and it’s in their home, now they can start claiming different deductions where they’re office is in their home, you know, part of the telephone bill, the different things they utilize in the house to run that business, because that does happen a lot. So they really need to be paying attention to if they’re taking classes to maintain their business, and if they are spending a lot on equipment and supplies. All of those things are deductible and so they really need to focus on what are the deductions they can get, and that’s one of those areas, Damien, where I believe they should definitely have an accountant, because you can never know every single thing when you are a self employed person running a business. All those different deductions you can get.
 
DAMIEN: And finally, Dr. Taffy, what are the pitfalls a couple can avoid?
 
DR. TAFFY: Ok, some of the pitfalls I think that couples should avoid are forgetting to claim charitable contributions whether it is cash, clothes, even mileage when they’re volunteering and giving their time. Another thing I think they should be on the lookout for is math miscalculations. If they are doing it themselves and they are doing it by hand versus using a software program, really pay attention to your numbers making sure that you didn’t transpose any numbers. Another thing I would say is if somebody has been unemployed this year, you know, or even last year, make sure you are claiming those unemployment benefits. Don’t forget about that, because there are so much that goes into doing the taxes and even also if there is, like we said, if there is children involved, different things you can also claim when it comes to the kids.
 
DAMIEN: Thank you very much for joining us today, Dr. Taffy, and discussing taxes in the newlywed couple. 
 
DR. TAFFY: Thank you so much for having me on..
 
DAMIEN: A pleasure as always. We are pleased to announce that Dr Taffy is one of our resident experts for Wedding Details Radio and weddingdetails.com. You can go there and link to her website, moneytalkmatters.com where you can listen to her common-sense advice all about what you should do with your taxes and finances when it comes to your wedding and with your marriage. You’ve been listening to Wedding Details Radio. My name is Damien Allen. Everybody have a great afternoon
 
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