Major Life-Changing Events and Your Taxes

Life Changing Events

Are you putting off life-changing events for these financial reasons?:

  • Lack of savings
  • Difficulty paying bills
  • Paying off credit card debt
  • Concerns about losing a job
  • Worries about the economy
  • Taking care of elderly parents or relatives

Don't let finances stop you from living your life! These major life events could positively change your tax situation and dramatically affect your tax benefits:

When you prepare your tax return on, we will help determine which tax breaks you qualify for based on the events that happened to you during the Tax Year. That way, we can be sure to include any tax savings on your tax return. Any of the events above may also affect your paycheck tax withholdings, so you should review and adjust your W-4 every time your life changes. Even if they do not affect your paycheck, if you qualify for certain tax credits or deductions (i.e. for buying a house), you may still want to update your W4 anyway. Use the FREE Tax Withholding Assessment Tool to see if you would need to submit a new W-4!


Getting married will change your life in many ways, including your tax situation and tax benefits:

Divorce will also affect your taxes:


Having a child or otherwise gaining a dependent can qualify you for a number of tax benefits:

If you are not married and have a child, you may qualify for the Head-of-Household filing status.


Once you own a home, many tax benefits become available to you:


If you go to college or continue your education after high school, there are tax benefits for you:


Employment is the cornerstone of the economy, and having a job has many associated tax benefits:


Being unemployed and looking for a job also has the following tax benefits: 


When you retire, the income you have saved may or may not be taxed: 

 Other Life Events That Affect Your Taxes


"In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes," Benjamin Franklin said. When death comes, taxes follow. Consider these tax things when someone dies: 

  • If property or money is inherited, the person who inherits it may owe an estate tax
  • When you prepare and file a tax return on, there's a box to check to indicate that you're filing the return for a deceased taxpayer. You can also enter the date of death on the return. Before you start, find out if the person is required to file a tax return
  • Use Form 1310 to claim a tax refund for a deceased taxpayer (which you can prepare and efile on 
  • If you also need to file previous tax returns for the deceased taxpayer, find, download, and complete tax forms for any Tax Year
  • Don't have their tax information? You can request a free tax return transcript from the IRS. 
  • The IRS may need your permission to receive a deceased taxpayer's information. Submit an information request with 1) The taxpayer's full name, address, and Social Security Number, 2) A copy of their death certificate, and either a) a copy of Letters Testamentary approved by the court or b) IRS Form 56, Notice Concerning Fiduciary Relationship (if there is no court proceeding).
  • If your deceased spouse was on a retirement plan, contact the employer or plan's administrator to make a claim for any benefits available to you. You should also review and change your beneficiaries if possible.
  • Protect any taxpayer's identity in case it's used to file a fraudulent tax return. Make sure to send copies of the death certificate to the IRS (so the IRS can update the taxpayer's records) and each credit reporting bureau (so they can put a "deceased alert" on the taxpayer's credit card report). You may also need to review their credit report for any questionable activity. If you are writing and submitting an obituary to a newspaper or other publication, don't put too much information that could be used by identity thieves (i.e. address, birth date, mother's maiden name, etc.).

Are There Life-Changing Events That Don't Affect My Tax Situation?

Life-related expenses that are not tax deductible include:

  • Burial, funeral, and cemetery expenses
  • Credit card fees (non-business)
  • Home repairs
  • Life insurance premiums (unless part of an alimony payment)
  • Rent payments

Find more expenses that do not qualify as a tax deduction

How Will My Life Changes Affect My Paycheck?

Use the FREE Tax Withholding Assessment Tool to see if you need to update your tax withholdings!



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