As we all know, it's tax time! You know, the time of year when you hear people talking about what they are going to buy with all of the money they are going to get back. A lot of people look forward to this time of year. I, however, have never enjoyed it. Why? Because for the past 6 years, I always checked the wrong box on my W2 form, and at the end of the year I would end up having to PAY money instead of getting any back! Did no one ever tell her which box to check? Yes, of course they did...but for whatever reason, I always got mixed up. Anyway, this past year, when I filled out my W2 form, I MADE SURE I checked the correct box. I was excited from then on. I was actually going to get money back this year!! And from what people had told me, in WV, you usually get most of your federal and state taxes back! HECK YES! ....but those people forgot one teeny tiny detail. I found this detail out for myself. I'll share it with you shortly:)
I eagerly awaited my W2 to come in the mail. I mean, who doesn't get excited about extra money? Then Tyler came home one day with his W2. Oh! That's right! We're married! Doesn't that mean we will file together?? (Yes, if you're married anytime before December 31st, you file as married.) Doesn't that mean we will get even more money back?? I asked Tyler if he normally got a return, and he said he always got a ton of money back, SCORE!
As soon as I had both of the W2s in my possession, I asked my mom to help me file them. (My mom always does our taxes. She has some special program on her computer.) I was so excited I could hardly contain myself. I slowly filled out the information, making sure not to make a mistake. I came to the "how are you filing" question. There were 2 married options. The first was "married filing jointly" and the second was "married filing separately." I picked the first option. The joint one. I finished all of the information and it started calculating our return. No...that couldn't possibly be right. No way. $100. I must have done something wrong. Oh I know, I bet I needed to pick the "married filing separately" option! So I went back, checked that one, and waited for it to recalculate. Wait.....WHAT!? No......This time it said we OWED $2100! That is not my idea of rollin' in the dough. I decided not to file yet. I'll just call a local tax place tomorrow. Because, there was no way....something had to be wrong.
When I called the next day, I explained my anguish. What was the reply? "Did you just get married?" umm...yes. But what does that have to do with anything? "Well, when you get married, you usually don't get any money back." Oh...ok...well, thanks for your help. "Oh. BUT WAIT, before you get too discouraged sweetie, if you have a baby this year, you can get an automatic $1,600 dollars back next year!" Did she just tell me to have a baby for money? Yes. Yes she did. Would you think I was a bad person if I told you that I hung up the phone right then?
This situation makes no sense to me TAX RULE MAKERS! Single people get a good amount of money back (as long as they check the right box) but POOR NEWLYWEDS get NOTHING??!?!
So to the couples getting ready to get married, when you file your taxes the first time, you may get enough money back for a nice dinner out :) Unless you have a baby or buy a house before December 31st of the year you get married! (Maybe each state is different?)
What I have learned from this: 1. The real world has a lot of stinky rules.. 2. The phrase,"Don't count your chickens before they hatch" makes a lot more sense now... 3. I would rather be married than get a tax return :)