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Tax tips for newlyweds saying "I do" on 11-12-13 or any day

Today, Nov. 12, 2013, is a big day for all sorts of gamblers.

For traditional gamblers, it's MegaMillions drawing day. The jackpot is $132 million (a $71 million lump sum payout option). It's also lottery day for many state games of chance. And let's not forget folks who are in Nevada, Atlantic City or casinos across the country.

They are sure to include today's numerical representation of 11-12-13 in their bets. Gamblers tend to be superstitious and anything, and I mean anything, that might help produce a win is embraced.

"Dates are significant to a lot of players," Danielle Frizzi-Babb, Ohio Lottery's communications director told the Cleveland Plain Dealer. "Any time you get a combination like that, people tend to play it. Eleven-eleven-eleven was a big one two years ago."

Wedding couple by epsos via Flickr CCGambling on a lucky wedding day: Then there are gambles of the heart. Dates are significant in these situations, too.

I've been much luckier in love than in games of chance. The hubby and I will celebrate 32 years of mostly wedded bliss -- I was a child bride; that's my story and I'm sticking to it! -- next year.

So I totally understand the desire of young lovers and those young at heart seeking any edge that will help them match the mostly wedded bliss that the hubby and I share.

That's why so many are tying the knot today, 11-12-13.

David's Bridal, which has wedding planning stores worldwide, estimates that more than 3,000 brides will marry today. That's a 722 percent increase over the number of vows exchanged on this day last year.

Whether today or similarly iconic dates such as 8-8-8 years ago or the more recent 12-12-12 or the coming 12-13-14 are seen as lucky or meerely symbolic, it seems the trend is here to stay.

The David's Bridal "What's on Brides' Minds" survey, conducted last November by Wakefield Research, found that 40 percent of brides would consider planning their wedding on a special date.

Next December is likely to be huge for weddings. Dec. 13, 2014, is on a Saturday. So if you're even remotely considering marriage, you might want to put a venue deposit down now.

If you miss out on that as a marital celebration day, you're out of luck, at least when it comes to symbolic numbers. The next big iconic date is Jan. 1, 2101 or 1/1/1 or if you're a sequential date fan, it's Jan. 2, 2103 or 1/2/3.

While luck might be part of the reason for selecting a date with ordered numbers, it also should make the anniversary easy to remember. Theoretically.

And it's usually the husband who catches heat for forgetting the big day.

I must admit, however, that despite how glad I am I that the hubby and I said "I do" all those years ago, I'm the one who tends to at least let our anniversary sneak up on me.

That he's a romantic, and a forgiving one when it comes to my bad big event memory, is just one more reason I think I'll keep him!

Tax moves for newlyweds: I'm better at remembering tax stuff. But I got to skip one of the key tasks a new bride must complete.

No, not writing thank you notes. I'm talking about notifying Uncle Sam of a new last name.

I kept my maiden name. Yes, dear relatives who after all these years still think I'm breaking a law, that's allowed.

But if do you change your name after your wedding, be it a complete change or a hyphenated surname for the new Mrs. or both bride and groom choose a different shared name, tell the Social Security Administration. This is critical so that your new name and Social Security number will match when you file your next tax return.

You can download Form SS-5, pick one up at your local SSA office or get one mailed to you by calling 800-772-1213. Fill it out and return it ASAP.

Next, review your withholding. When both a husband and wife work, your combined income could push you into a higher tax bracket when you file your first joint tax return. Use the IRS Withholding Calculator to figure out the correct amount of withholding each spouse needs to have taken from paychecks then adjust your withholding by giving your employer a new Form W-4, Employee's Withholding Allowance Certificate.

If you're moving into a new home, let the Internal Revenue Service know your new address by filing Form 8822. This will ensure that you'll get all IRS communications that might come your way, including any refund if you still get it by snail mail instead of direct deposit.

You can download the address change form (or order one by calling 800–TAX–FORM/800–829–3676), but you must snail mail the paper copy. And do so before you file your next tax return. The IRS specifically asks that you don't simply attach Form 8822 to your 1040.

New filing considerations: When filing season arrives in a couple of months, there are other things to think about.

Your new filing status probably will be married filing jointly. That applies even if you marry on Dec. 31. What your marital status is on the last day of the tax year is how you file. You might find, however, that it's better for you and your new spouse to file separate tax returns.

A separate return might be called for if he or she had not much income but lots of medical bills before y'all said I do. In this case, that spouse might be more able to deduct those health related costs as an itemized deduction.

You'll need to run the numbers for the various filing options to make sure. Yes, it's a bit more work, but it could save some tax dollars that newlyweds (or even long-time marrieds like the hubby and me) could use.

If one of you had kids before you married, check out how the children fit into your new family and your new tax situation. If you and your new bride/groom now have custody of a child from a previous marriage or relationship, that kiddo could get you the benefit of the child tax credit.

Don't forget the tax credit for dependent care if you pay someone to look after your kids while you work. And because of your major life change, you can change your benefits to enroll in a child care flexible spending account to help cover the youngster's care costs while you and your spouse work.

Yeah, I know you're not really focusing on tax matters right now. That's OK. But bookmark this post and give it a read after you get back from your honeymoon.

And from this long-time Sadie, Sadie married lady, my sincerest congratulations and best wishes to all you new brides and grooms, today and every day!

Wedding photo by Epsos via Flickr CC

You also might find these marriage related posts of interest:


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Brian Huber

Great overview of the tax impact from marriage. I'm referring the tax preparers in my seasonal refresher class to start here for remembering the factors to consider with new couples. Even we experienced tax pros need these reminders. An amazing number of circumstances arise with blended families, as my tax students discover by simply inspecting the free sample EA exam questions at I'm especially glad you emphasized the name change issue because mismatched name and Social Security number is my top reason for rejected electronically filed tax returns.

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