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What Determines Head of Household Status

What Determines Head of Household Status When Filing Taxes?

Goffstown, NH Resident Has Questions

Head of household tax filers can claim significantly more tax deduction than their single counterparts.  To qualify for head of household status you must be unmarried or living separately from your spouse for at least six months of the year.  Temporary absences for work or school are not considered living separately.  The head of household must pay more than half of the expenses for the home, including rent or a mortgage, utilities, repairs and property taxes.  You must have a qualifying dependent, such as a child or elderly parent, residing in the home the majority of the year.

A Goffstown resident was considering filing his taxes for the next tax year with a head of household status.  First, he wanted to make sure he had a good understanding of what this would mean.

How Head of Household Filing Status Affects Your Tax Return

The standard deduction for head of household is 50% larger than single filers, $18,650 compared to $12,400.  The tax brackets are also more advantageous for those that are filing with the head of household status.  This reduced tax rate can make a big difference when it comes to the total amount paid in taxes each year.

The head of household filing status is one that is often confused by taxpayers.  This is not a status for married couples unless they are separated or in the process of a divorce.  Because this is so often misused, filing with a head of household status may make you more vulnerable to an IRS audit or inquiry.  Ensuring that you are eligible for this status before filing is critical.

If you can qualify for the head of household filing status, this is a great change to make.  After speaking to Merrimack Tax Associates, the Goffstown resident can be assured that this is a status that he can use.  He also understands how much of a financial advantage this will be when it comes time to file his taxes again.

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