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epsonderby

W-4. Just looking for some input from others

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So I've not long started my first job in the US. I have a base salary of 27.5k, with 6k worth of shift premiums. I'm married (my wife doesn't work) and we have a nearly 5 year old daughter (my step-daughter)

I have completed the form in the following manner, but am concerned I've made a mistake along the way. I wondered if anyone would mind just looking over the data below and sharing the benefit of their wisdom?

A Enter “1” for yourself if no one else can claim you as a dependent. I entered '1' here.

B Enter “1” if: • You are single and have only one job; or

• You are married, have only one job, and your spouse does not work; or

• Your wages from a second job or your spouse’s wages (or the total of both) are $1,500 or less. I entered '1' here.

C Enter “1” for your spouse. But, you may choose to enter “-0-” if you are married and have either a working spouse or more than one job. (Entering “-0-” may help you avoid having too little tax withheld.) I entered '1' here.

D Enter number of dependents (other than your spouse or yourself) you will claim on your tax return. I entered '1' here.

E Enter “1” if you will file as head of household on your tax return (see conditions under Head of household above) I entered nothing here.

F Enter “1” if you have at least $1,900 of child or dependent care expenses for which you plan to claim a credit I entered '1' here.

G Child Tax Credit (including additional child tax credit). See Pub. 972, Child Tax Credit, for more information.

• If your total income will be less than $61,000 ($90,000 if married), enter “2” for each eligible child; then less “1” if you have three to

seven eligible children or less “2” if you have eight or more eligible children.

• If your total income will be between $61,000 and $84,000 ($90,000 and $119,000 if married), enter “1” for each eligible child. I entered '2' here.

H Add lines A through G and enter total here. (Note. This may be different from the number of exemptions you claim on your tax return.) I entered '6' here.

This meant that on the W-4 part given to my employer:

5 Total number of allowances you are claiming (from line H above or from the applicable worksheet on page 2) I entered '6' here.

Is 6 too high? I don't want to get a refund at the end of the tax year, but I also don't want too underpay. My goal is to break even, much like the UK PAYE system I am most familiar with.


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Six seems correct to me given what you've provided. The IRS W-4 calculator is offline at the moment, but there are others you can find online to confirm if you want to be doubly sure.

So I've not long started my first job in the US. I have a base salary of 27.5k, with 6k worth of shift premiums. I'm married (my wife doesn't work) and we have a nearly 5 year old daughter (my step-daughter)

I have completed the form in the following manner, but am concerned I've made a mistake along the way. I wondered if anyone would mind just looking over the data below and sharing the benefit of their wisdom?

A Enter “1” for yourself if no one else can claim you as a dependent. I entered '1' here.

B Enter “1” if: • You are single and have only one job; or

• You are married, have only one job, and your spouse does not work; or

• Your wages from a second job or your spouse’s wages (or the total of both) are $1,500 or less. I entered '1' here.

C Enter “1” for your spouse. But, you may choose to enter “-0-” if you are married and have either a working spouse or more than one job. (Entering “-0-” may help you avoid having too little tax withheld.) I entered '1' here.

D Enter number of dependents (other than your spouse or yourself) you will claim on your tax return. I entered '1' here.

E Enter “1” if you will file as head of household on your tax return (see conditions under Head of household above) I entered nothing here.

F Enter “1” if you have at least $1,900 of child or dependent care expenses for which you plan to claim a credit I entered '1' here.

G Child Tax Credit (including additional child tax credit). See Pub. 972, Child Tax Credit, for more information.

• If your total income will be less than $61,000 ($90,000 if married), enter “2” for each eligible child; then less “1” if you have three to

seven eligible children or less “2” if you have eight or more eligible children.

• If your total income will be between $61,000 and $84,000 ($90,000 and $119,000 if married), enter “1” for each eligible child. I entered '2' here.

H Add lines A through G and enter total here. (Note. This may be different from the number of exemptions you claim on your tax return.) I entered '6' here.

This meant that on the W-4 part given to my employer:

5 Total number of allowances you are claiming (from line H above or from the applicable worksheet on page 2) I entered '6' here.

Is 6 too high? I don't want to get a refund at the end of the tax year, but I also don't want too underpay. My goal is to break even, much like the UK PAYE system I am most familiar with.


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I have completed the form in the following manner, but am concerned I've made a mistake along the way. I wondered if anyone would mind just looking over the data below and sharing the benefit of their wisdom?

Is 6 too high? I don't want to get a refund at the end of the tax year, but I also don't want too underpay. My goal is to break even, much like the UK PAYE system I am most familiar with.

The only thing I question is your daughter being in daycare (F ). Is that correct even though your wife doesn't work?

They write this to ideally help you break even. The only way you are going to know if it worked is at the end of 2013 when it's time to do taxes. It's a guess at best because tax laws can change, more taxes, less taxes, new deductions, tax breaks, etc. Years ago, we were a family of four, one income, and claimed 0 allowances and still owed in the end. (Don't let that influence you, tax laws are very different now. It was just an example of how it's not an exact science.) It's written for the masses and may or may not work out correctly for your unique situation. You'll know next year and can tweak it then if you need to. Also remember if your situation changes...wife goes to work, new baby, etc you can give your employer a different one at anytime. If a refund is more appealing than owing money, then lower your number.

Edited by Nich-Nick

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The only thing I question is your daughter being in daycare (F ). Is that correct even though your wife doesn't work?

They write this to ideally help you break even. The only way you are going to know if it worked is at the end of 2013 when it's time to do taxes. It's a guess at best because tax laws can change, more taxes, less taxes, new deductions, tax breaks, etc. Years ago, we were a family of four, one income, and claimed 0 allowances and still owed in the end. (Don't let that influence you, tax laws are very different now. It was just an example of how it's not an exact science.) It's written for the masses and may or may not work out correctly for your unique situation. You'll know next year and can tweak it then if you need to. Also remember if your situation changes...wife goes to work, new baby, etc you can give your employer a different one at anytime. If a refund is more appealing than owing money, then lower your number.

Hi Nich-Nick,

I didn't mean to put a 1 in (F ), so it was just 6 at the end.

Appreciate both of you chiming in with your thoughts. I'll likely leave it at 6 for the time being and then might get some professional advice come filing time.

Edited by epsonderby

11/29/12 - AOS Interview in Atlanta - 10 minutes long and approved on the spot.

ROC in 2014!

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nvm. saw your correction about the 6 v 7.

Edited by Vanessa&Tony

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