Tax: how to balance your payment as a couple

Married couples or couples in a registered partnership can opt for an individualized rate of withholding tax calculated from their respective incomes. A choice that makes it possible to better distribute the tax burden within the household.

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It is a must for taxpayers. From April 11 the tax return is open. Online, through their personal space at or through a paper formhouseholds must declare to the tax authorities all the income they received in 2023. And like every year they have respect deadlines. This spring, it is the residents of departments 55 (Meuse) to 976 (Mayotte) who will conclude the declaration campaign.

However, the income tax return has another advantage: it allows taxpayers to take stock of their tax rate. withholding tax. Entered into force on January 1, 2019, Bercy applies withholding tax year-round to salaries, old-age pensions, unemployment benefits, etc. And the withholding rate can be consulted on the website of the tax administration in its personal space, within the section “Manage my withholding tax”Then “View debit history”.

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When declaring, it is advisable to pay attention to the normal rate used for your tax household. By default, Bercy applies the same deduction rate to spouses. However, this method of calculation can sometimes prove unbalanced for married couples or couples in a registered partnership (which form one tax household), especially if the differences in income are significant. One spouse may end up with a high tax rate even if their income is low.

In this case, taxpayers can initiate at any time in their personal space “an individual rate of withholding tax based on their respective incomes, calculated by the administration, instead of a single rate for both spouses in the household”, explains Bercy. But to be clear,”it is not about the individualization of the tax, but about the simple different distribution of the tax payment between the spouses”reminds the tax administration.

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The individual rate will soon be used as standard

in concerns about the fair distribution of tax effort within couples, this fall, the government adopted an amendment to the Financial Act for 2024 which standardly introduces the implementation of an individualized rate of withholding tax. And this replaces the personalized rate applied to households (same deduction rate for spouses). This way you will no longer have to change this rate yourself.

A measure that, remember, will not change the total amount of income tax paid by taxpayers. However, it makes it possible to balance taxation especially for women, who on average have a lower income than their husbands. But you’ll have to be a little patient before you can use it, as this change won’t come into effect until September 2025. In the meantime, Capital offers you the chance to understand the impact of the individualized withholding tax rate thanks to simulations performed with Arsene Taxand law firm.

Also read: Tax: complete this box to take advantage of the increase in your family quotient

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