December 06, 2013
Marcum's Top Tax Tips for Same-Sex Married Couples Featured in Accounting Today Article "Marcum Shares Tax Planning Guide for Same-Sex Couples"
By Tamika Cody
Top 100 Firm Marcum LLP’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Practice has released a list of top tax planning tips for married same-sex couples to help guide them on what they will need to file taxes since the federal government officially recognized same-sex marriage for tax purposes.
The firm uses the following tips (5 of 10).
- Married tax status: Determine if there is any benefit to filing amended income tax returns using “married” status.
- Non-taxable fringe benefits: Consider amending income tax returns to exclude previous taxable income which was used to purchase job-related benefits for your spouse, such as health insurance, life insurance, and other fringe benefits.
- Employer spousal benefits: Take advantage of all non-taxable fringe benefits available to your spouse.
- Retirement accounts: To save taxes your beneficiaries will pay after your death and allow the pay out to be stretched out as long as possible, check your IRA/401K plan designations.
- Social Security: Apply for social security marital benefits and the lump sum death benefit, if applicable.
“Estate planning is also an essential component of effective tax planning and wealth preservation,” according to Janis Cowhey McDonagh, co-leader of the LGBT group and a trusts and estates attorney, who noted that estate planning also plays a vital part of effective tax planning. “2013 is a brand new environment for same-sex married couples looking to minimize their tax exposure. It is important to consider the full range of options for protecting their families and their assets.”