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Married couple tax

Andy Allen

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Greetings all.

In very basic terms if two people are living together paying their individual taxes and they then get married and pay tax on their joint income is the tax likely to be higher, lower or about the same.

The reason I ask is my wife and I are in that situation and when we were single our accountant told us that when we marry our tax bill would reduce quite dramatically. So needless to say we were a little bit shocked and miffed when we had last years bill a few weeks ago and our tax on simillar earnings as the year before had almost doubled.

Man have I got to do some overtime before November.

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It should be lower, but by how much depends largely upon whether your incomes are at very different levels.  Did you get married during the last tax year or before it?

In general terms, your incomes will now be added together and then divided in half before your allowances are calculated, so it should bring the higher earner into a lower tax bracket and thus on the face of it your accountant's advice was good. 

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