The 2014 Tax Brackets

November 27, 2013

Introduction

Every year, the IRS adjusts more than forty tax provisions for inflation. This is done to prevent what is called “bracket creep.” This is the phenomenon by which people are pushed into higher income tax brackets or have reduced value from credits or deductions due to inflation instead of any increase in real income.

The IRS uses the Consumer Price Index (CPI) to calculate the past year’s inflation and adjusts income thresholds, deduction amounts, and credit values accordingly.

Income Tax Brackets and Rates

In 2014, the income limits for all brackets and all filers will be adjusted for inflation and will be as follows (Table 1).[1] The top marginal income tax rate of 39.6 percent will hit taxpayers with an adjusted gross income of $406,751 and higher for single filers and $457,601 and higher for married filers.

Table 1. 2014 Taxable Income Brackets and Rates

Rate

Single Filers

Married Joint Filers

Head of Household Filers

10%

$0 to $9,075

$0 to $18,150

$0 to $12,950

15%

$9,076 to $36,900

$18,151 to$73,800

$12,951 to $49,400

25%

$36,901 to $89,350

$73,801 to $148,850

$49,401 to $127,550

28%

$89,351 to $186,350

$148,851 to $226,850

$127,551 to $206,600

33%

$186,351 to $405,100

$226,851 to $405,100

$206,601 to $405,100

35%

$405,101 to 406,750

$405,101 to 457,600

$405,101 to $432,200

39.6%

$406,751+

$457,601+

$432,201+

Source: Internal Revenue Service

 

Standard Deduction and Personal Exemption

The standard deduction will increase by $100 from $6,100 to $6,200 for singles (Table 2). For married couples filing jointly, it will increase by $200 from $12,200 to $12,400.

Next year’s personal exemption will increase by $50 to $3,950.

Table 2. 2014 Standard Deduction and Personal Exemption

Filing Status

Deduction Amount

Single

 $6,200.00

Married Filing Jointly

 $12,400.00

Head of Household

 $9,100.00

Personal Exemption

 $3,950.00

Source: Internal Revenue Service

 

PEP and Pease

PEP (personal exemption phase-out) and Pease are two provisions in the tax code that increase taxable income for high-income earners. PEP is the phase out of the personal exemption and Pease (named after former Senator Donald Pease) reduces the value of most itemized deductions once a taxpayer’s adjusted gross income reaches a certain point.

The income threshold for both PEP and Pease will be $254,200 for single filers and $305,050 for married filers (Tables 3 & 4). PEP will end at $376,700 for singles and $427,550 for couples filing jointly, meaning these taxpayers will no longer have a personal exemption.

Table 3. 2014 Pease Limitations on Itemized Deductions

Filing Status

Income Threshold

Single

 $254,200.00

Married Filing Jointly

 $305,050.00

Head of Household

 $279,650.00

Source: Internal Revenue Service

Table 4. Personal Exemption Phase-out

Filing Status

Phase out Begin

Phase out Complete

Single

 $254,200.00

 $376,700.00

Married Filing Jointly

 $305,050.00

 $427,550.00

Head of Household

 $279,650.00

 $402,150.00

Source: Internal Revenue Service

 

Alternative Minimum Tax

Since its creation in the 1960s, the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) has not been adjusted for inflation. Thus, Congress was forced to “patch” the AMT by raising the exemption amount to prevent middle class taxpayers from being hit by the tax as a result of inflation.

On January 2, 2013 the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 finally indexed the income thresholds to inflation, preventing the necessity for an annual patch.

The AMT exemption amount for 2014 is $52,800 for singles and $82,100 for married couple filing jointly (Table 5).

Table 5. 2014 Alternative Minimum Tax

Filing Status

Exemption Amount

Single

 $52,800.00

Married Filing Jointly

 $82,100.00

Married Filing Separately

 $41,050.00

Source: Internal Revenue Service

 

Earned Income Tax Credit

The 2014 maximum Earned Income Tax Credit for singles, heads of households, and joint filers is $496 if the filer has no children (Table 6). For one child the credit is $3,305, two children is $5,460, and three or more children is $6,143.

Table 6. 2014 Earned Income Tax Credit Parameters

Filing Status

 

No Children

One Child

Two Children

Three or More Children

Single or Head of Household

Earned Income Level for Max Credit

$6,480

$9,720

$13,650

$13,650

 

Maximum Credit

$496

$3,305

$5,460

$6,143

 

Income Level When Phase out Begins

$8,110

$17,830

$17,830

$17,830

 

Income Level When Phase-out Ends (Credit Equals Zero)

$14,590

$38,511

$43,756

$46,997

Married Filing Jointly

Earned Income Level for Max Credit

$6,480

$9,720

$13,650

$13,650

 

Maximum Credit

$496

$3,305

$5,460

$6,143

 

Earned Income Level When Phase-out Begins

$13,540

$23,260

$23,260

$23,260

 

Earned Income Level When Phase out Ends (Credit Equals Zero)

$20,020

$43,941

$49,186

$52,427

Source: Internal Revenue Service



[1] Internal Revenue Service, IRS Revenue Procedure 2013-35, in Internal Revenue Bulletin 2013-47, Nov. 18, 2013, http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-drop/rp-13-35.pdf. All following charts and tables derive data from this document.

 

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