paying too much tax? (too much deducted from payroll)

kcinkc71February 27, 2009

I am getting a refund of 3600. I am working to get this down to closer to zero for all the obvious reasons. My HR dept. ran and exemption scenario thru the payroll dept. and even increasing from my current level of 4 exemptions to 8, this only makes about a $90 dollar diff., so I would still be looking at a 2500 refund. I have done the worksheet from irs.gov, says I should be at 6 exemptions. How do I keep more of my money? I can provide more details if needed. Married file jointly, 1 income, 2 kids, a little 1099. I want my money! thanks

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dave_donhoff

Change the government's tax regime? (I mean... not unless you've finally REALLY had enough economic abuse.)

    Bookmark   February 27, 2009 at 2:04PM
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dave_donhoff

Seriously though (well actually I was...) but if you want to reduce the interest-free loans you grant the IRS, you can increase your exemptions. The next step is to initiate a home-based side business which gives you further cashflow management controls. If its at all possible to convert your W2 status to true, legitimate contractor status, that helps also.

The government's IRS holds employers responsible as their collection arm against the employer's W2 employees... so the further you can seperate yourself from those categories the more financial control you can keep.

Luck!
Dave

    Bookmark   February 27, 2009 at 2:08PM
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Ideefixe

Change the number of witholding allowances on your W-9. You're not obligated to loan the Feds money.

Here is a link that might be useful: How to Change Your Withholding to Provide More Monthly Cash

    Bookmark   February 27, 2009 at 2:08PM
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kcinkc71

ideefixe, I'm guessing you meant w4?? it just seems odd that I would need to claim 12 deductions/exemptions to get in line with a net net of zero at the end of the year. Not sure why I would be suprised from anything IRS related. Go Flat Tax!!! sorry cpa's

    Bookmark   February 27, 2009 at 3:31PM
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dadoes

Get Form 1040-ES for 2009. It has what should be the correct tax RATES for 2009. Figure what is your yearly salary, estimated interest income, whatever else you may have. Self-employment, even, but then you have to include Schedule C and SE. Figure your personal exemptions and deductions as best you can based on either itemization or standard deduction for your filing status. Calculate what is the tax liability against the rates in 1040-ES and divide that by the number of pay periods you have. That tells you have much tax to withhold from each check.

I've been doing this for years on a spreadsheet, correcting the numbers as the year progresses. Some things are difficult to estimate, such as dividends and capital gains for income, or unexpected medical expenses for deduction itemization and any last-minute changes to the tax code.

I AM the payroll department at work, so I can adjust my withholding whenever I want. I purposely try to have a small balance due. One year I owed or was refunded (don't recall which) $26. For 2008 tax year I owe $115. 2007 tax year I got a $1,055 refund, tripped-up by some medical expenses for an incident in June that I couldn't predict if it'd all be settled by end of the year (which it was, by just a few days).

    Bookmark   February 27, 2009 at 7:35PM
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jlhug

From ES is the form for making estimated payments.

Withholding tables are in Pub 15. The tables start on page 40. They are broken down into filing status and frequency of paychecks.

Here is a link that might be useful: Pub 15

    Bookmark   February 27, 2009 at 7:51PM
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dadoes

It's the same thing.

Withholding from paychecks IS estimated tax payment based on the job salary and the number of personal exemptions claimed via Form W-4. Form W-4 includes worksheets to incorporate an estimate of itemized deductions and additional income or more than one job, with a line for an additional $-amount to be withheld from each check, if needed, beyond what the withholding tables indicate.

1040-ES goes about it more directly by calculating what is the estimated $-amount of tax liability for the year using TAX tables rather than WITHHOLDING tables, and dividing that by four quarters. I'm simply incorporating the 1040-ES worksheet into a spreadsheet with my personal details, and continually updating the numbers through the year to increase the accuracy as the income and deductible expenses occur.

The IRS makes many tools, forms, and publications available to the taxpayer. One only needs to be aware and make use of them.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2009 at 12:45AM
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jlhug

You are right, Dadoes. I'm so used to only seeing the payment coupons that the computer prints that I forgot about the instruction portion of Form ES.

Based on my years of teaching tax classes, the tax rate schedules intimidate many who are uncomfortable with math.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2009 at 7:59AM
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