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Megan C
Megan C, Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 15587
Experience:  Licensed CPA, CFE, CMA, CGMA who teaches accounting courses at Master's Level
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My husband and I want to put me on his Etrade acct but we wonder

Resolved Question:

My husband and I want to put me on his Etrade acct but we wonder if because of my student loans over 100$K that wouldnt be a good idea. Because we file together, if he has to pay taxes on assets, extra money earned then my income suddenly looking so much better to the student loan administrators, I suddenly have to pay taxes on our stock revenues too. *I recall asking a similar question before we decided to file jointly because of the same issue ( my income suddenly becoming much bigger) but I was told his income is his income and mine is mine. I guess I also dont know if they check? The reason why I have been able to not pay back for a while is I am not making money as an artist so I appreciate any extra time I have to get that going. I wouldnt want to join accounts with him if it meant I suddenly would have to start paying back "now".
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Tax
Expert:  Megan C replied 1 year ago.

MyVirtualCPA :

Thanks for asking your question! I'm sorry to hear about your tax issue and I'm going to try my best to help you understand or resolve it.

MyVirtualCPA :

How are you today?

MyVirtualCPA :

I realize that you would like to be added to your husband's e-Trade account, but are concerned that it might impact your student loan repayment.

MyVirtualCPA :

It is true that if you are married, and file a joint return, both your incomes will be used to determine what you can pay. So, if your husband has a much higher income level, then the chances of you having a lowered payment amount are slim.

Customer:

Im fine thanks for asking. Yes your ssessment is correct.

Customer:

But then how can he get away with not paying any difference in taxes with my "debt"?

MyVirtualCPA :

If you look at the Whitehouse.gov, the income-based repayment schedule considers your joint income if you file a joint return

MyVirtualCPA :

If you file separate returns, his income is his and yours is yours

Customer:

But we have been filing together for a few years now and I dont owe more to the govt because our income is much higher than before.

MyVirtualCPA :

Are you on an income based repayment schedule?

Customer:

not yet

MyVirtualCPA :

You still owe the same amount in total - whatever you borrowed you owe.

MyVirtualCPA :

Okay. If you are not on an income based repayment schedule, and are paying your loans as they were set up, then it doesn't matter what your income is. When it matters is when you are asking for a deferral, forgiveness, or income based repayment

Customer:

Yes, there is no question but if we've been filing together now then either he would pay less taxes because of my added "student debt" or I would pay more taxes becauseof his added income, or both. But neither has happpened.

MyVirtualCPA :

The only tax break you get for student loan debt is to deduct the interest that you pay.

MyVirtualCPA :

And, since your taxes are figured joint it should be in most circumstances close to what it would be if you each filed separately.

Customer:

I didnt file, was in grad school

MyVirtualCPA :

What do you mean when you say you did not file?

Customer:

I was not working before I met him, was in grad school.

Customer:

a student, unemployed

MyVirtualCPA :

Well then you would not have had to file, and if you got married and were unemployed and then filed together, his taxes would be lower

MyVirtualCPA :

because he got to add you on to his return

Customer:

but what about my debt?

Customer:

doesnt that get added to his return too?

MyVirtualCPA :

All you can deduct is the interest payments

MyVirtualCPA :

You don't deduct the entire debt

MyVirtualCPA :

But, if your income is between $125,000 and $155,000 your deduction is phased out. If you make more than $155,000 combined, then he wouldn't be able to deduct your interest payments

Customer:

So on my side, how is it that I dont have to pay taxes when our income is so much higher (for me) than it used to be....

MyVirtualCPA :

If you file joint you won't pay tax yourself - you get one tax bill.

MyVirtualCPA :

So, you wouldn't pay tax

MyVirtualCPA :

you both would pay tax together

Customer:

How does it get decided then if our tax bill goes up or down depending on what we make on etrade?

Customer:

Sound like it shoudnt have anything to do with it from what you said?

MyVirtualCPA :

All you have to pay taxes on in the eTrade account is when you sell stock. You don't pay tax if you do not sell anything.

Customer:

Thats a good tip. And if we have to sell, or take money out, then how is it figured at the end of the year (with or without my student debt) that we pay more taxes?

Customer:

I'm going on the assumption adding me to Etrade will increase our taxes.

MyVirtualCPA :

No, adding you to eTrade will not increase your taxes if you are filing joint. It will make no difference.

MyVirtualCPA :

The amount that you pay tax on from the account is the amount that you sell stock for less what you paid for it.

Customer:

Thats what I thought! Because if it did it would already have done that with our taxes thus far.

Customer:

I feel relieved, finally an answer :)

Customer:

one last non related small ?

MyVirtualCPA :

Yes, but adding you to eTrade won't increase your taxes, and won't do anything to your student loans

Customer:

I understand, its like a mute point

Customer:

May I ask one last question?

MyVirtualCPA :

Yes

Customer:

I recently moved from NYC to CT. I often bought things that if were in CT did not have to pay tax and heard things like CT residents dton pay tax. Why is it I continue to pay taxes? Is it online purchases, overseas? Out of state?

MyVirtualCPA :

I'm not sure I follow. Are you asking why you still have sales taxes?

Customer:

Let me add that things bought in NY shipped to non NY addresses were tax free -thats not what I'm asking about.

Customer:

Let me start over. In NYC retail, I did not have to pay taxes if my item was shipped to another state.

MyVirtualCPA :

Correct

Customer:

Also, I heard something like CT residents not paying taxes at all.

MyVirtualCPA :

You only pay sales tax if you physically purchase a product in a state, or purchase from someone in the state and have it shipped within that state.

MyVirtualCPA :

No, that's not true.

MyVirtualCPA :

CT has sales tax

MyVirtualCPA :

If you buy something in CT, or buy from a store in CT and have it shipped to an address in CT you will pay tax

Customer:

CT has no differences when it comes to international buying, out of state buying, etc?

MyVirtualCPA :

If you buy from NY and have shipped to CT there is no tax

Customer:

I know, thats not it.

MyVirtualCPA :

when you buy international, there is no tax

Customer:

for all states?

MyVirtualCPA :

yes, for all states. There's no sales tax for out of state or international purchases

Customer:

Im mad now. People owe me money

Customer:

How do I get it back?

Customer:

hehe

MyVirtualCPA :

I'm sorry, I don't know if that's possible.

Customer:

I was in SPain nd they gave me a paper to mail to get my money back in taxes that I paid at the register. That is my only experience, but online purchases....

MyVirtualCPA :

That's different. That's a VAT tax, and it's foreign

Customer:

Please explain, if you can

MyVirtualCPA :

VAT tax is the equivalent of our sales tax, but VAT tax is only charged overseas. If you buy something overseas, and bring it home, you can get your VAT refunded

Customer:

Yes thats exactly what that was. How about if Im in the US buying something online from overseas?

Customer:

Dont worry i will pay you extra because this is like 2 questions now

MyVirtualCPA :

Technically they shouldn't charge VAT on that. BUT!!! You do have Duties and Taxes you pay to the US upon import

MyVirtualCPA :

That's why a lot of eBay buyers will mark the customs paperwork "gift" because then there is no duty

Customer:

Unfortunatley in my ignorance, have paid both in some cases.

MyVirtualCPA :

The Duties and Taxes are charged by the US for products that are purchased overseas. It can be quite high. I once bought a baseball hat and a key chain from France, and the duties were almost more than the original purchase itself

Customer:

Yes me too, happenns a lot

Customer:

Is there a code or something I can quickly quote to the seller so they understand I know I dont have to pay taxes?

Customer:

I guess a legal/tax codes

MyVirtualCPA :

I don't have that, because it would be an international rule

Customer:

That nobody knows about

MyVirtualCPA :

No, an international tax expert would have that information. I only can address this because I am familiar with the different taxes, but it's not my specialty.

Customer:

I understand. I'll google it? Perhaps its easy to find.

MyVirtualCPA :

If it were easy to find, I would have done it while we were chatting.

Customer:

Oh.

Customer:

Well, in the US consumers best interest there has to be someone i can ask..?

MyVirtualCPA :

I don't know of anyone on this site that would know the laws and regulations of international locations.

Customer:

What about an investment banker?

MyVirtualCPA :

Typically they don't deal with this, they deal with investments -not sales tax

Customer:

Ok, sorry for my confusion. You just made it sound like common knowledge that any international country should not be taxing me on purchases so I thought it was a common rule, sorry.

Customer:

Youve been immensely helpful to me today, thank you

MyVirtualCPA :

You're welcome. When you are satisfied with our communication, please rate me as "excellent" as that is how I receive credit from the site for assisting you today

Customer:

Will do, have a nice day.

MyVirtualCPA :

You too!

Megan C, Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 15587
Experience: Licensed CPA, CFE, CMA, CGMA who teaches accounting courses at Master's Level
Megan C and 8 other Tax Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Megan C replied 1 year ago.
Thanks Christina for the question today. Please come back and see me if you have any tax, finance, or social security questions. It was a pleasure working with you today.

Thanks again for using JustAnswer.com!

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Megan C
Megan C
Tax Professional
15587 Satisfied Customers
Licensed CPA, CFE, CMA, CGMA who teaches accounting courses at Master's Level