Marriage or Education

Today TaxMama hears from Mary in Florida, with this problem. “I am finishing up my degree in nursing – and I am about to get married this year. But if I file a married return, I will lose my financial aid. And my tuition is over $30,000 per year. What do I do?”

Dear Mary

Congratulations on your upcoming marriage.

And here you’re going into the new marriage with mixed feelings.

If you get married, then, naturally, YES, you absolutely have to file as either married, filing jointly or married filing separately on your tax returns.

So now you have to make a decision.

1) How important is it for you to have financial aid for your education? Besides, are you getting grants? Or loans? There are other ways to get loans besides FAFSA.

2) How important is it for you to be married right now vs. in a year or two, after you finish your education?

3) Can you talk to the place where you put the deposit for your wedding and have them move that deposit to another date – a year or two from now?

4) And what does your fiance’ say is the value of the investment in your career and future earning capacity?

Discuss it with each other. You may find that, for now, you’d rather live together and get that education. Then, upon graduation have a wonderful graduation/wedding bash.

And if you can’t get your deposit back – throw one heck of a party with that money – for a few of your closest friends.

And remember, you can find answers to all kinds of questions about marriage counseling(?) and other tax issues, free. Where? Where else? At TaxMama.com

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