Daycare Tax Tips

Her Employee Just Got Married

Must she submit a new Form W-4?

A family child care provider writes:

> One of my employees recently got married but wants to keep all the info on her W-4 form the same since they will be doing taxes separately. Is there anything I need to do? Does she need to fill another W-4?

Glad you asked! This issue confuses a lot of people.

Employees who get married are not required to submit a new Form W-4 Employee's Withholding Allowance Certificate. The "Single" versus "Married" check boxes on the W-4 are actually pretty misleading. They need not equate to an employee's true marital status.

Employees should complete their W-4 with the goal of having the right amount of income tax withheld from their paycheck. I often have married clients who stick with the "Single" box on their W-4, because more tax is withheld that way. At some point, the IRS added a third "Married, but withhold at higher Single rate" box, to make this option clear.

Last updated 9 October 2011

Posted on 2011-10-09 21:44:17