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In 2012 federal estate taxes return with a top rate of 35%. Estates worth up to $5.12 million will be excluded from paying federal estate tax. This means that the federal government could ‘inherit’ a significant portion of your estate unless you take measures to preserve your wealth.
If you have numerous itemized deductions such as mortgage interest, charitable contributions, etc., it may make sense for you to itemize your deductions instead of using the standard deduction for your tax filing status.
Tax-free investments such as municipal bonds have lower yields due to their tax-exempt status.
Did you withhold enough in taxes this past year?
It might surprise you how many days you would have to work to pay your estimated federal tax liability (including Social Security tax withholdings).
Taxes are unavoidable and without planning, the annual tax liability can be very uncertain.
Each April many taxpayers are surprised as they realize that they have either over withheld or under withheld on their taxes. Use this calculator each year to help determine whether you are likely to be on target based on your current withholding status.
Interest paid on debts incurred in order to invest (such as ‘margin accounts’) is generally deductible to the extent that it offsets investment income (such as interest, dividends and short term capital gains). Interest payments in excess of investment income can be carried forward in hopes of offsetting future investment income.
Self employment taxes are comprised of two parts: Social Security and Medicare. You will pay 6.2 percent and your employer will pay Social Security taxes of 6.2 percent on the first $117,000 of your covered wages. You each also pay Medicare taxes of 1.45 percent on all your wages – no limit. If you are self-employed, your Social Security tax rate is 12.4 percent and your Medicare tax is 2.9 percent on those same amounts of earnings but you are able to deduct the employer portion. You will pay an additional 0.9% Medicare tax on the amount that your annual income exceeds $200,000 for single filers, $250,000 for married filing jointly, and $125,000 married filing separate. Use this calculator to estimate your self-employment taxes.
Federal taxes on your net capital gain(s) will vary depending on your marginal income tax bracket and holding period of the asset.
Investment vehicles are taxed differently. This calculator is intended to help compare a fully taxable investment to two tax advantaged situations.
Did you know that up to 85% of your Social Security Benefits may be subject to income tax? If this is the case you may want to consider repositioning some of your other income to minimize how much of your Social Security Benefit may be taxed and thereby, maximize your retirement income sources.
Interest paid may or may not be tax-deductible depending on the type of interest paid.