CCH Logo
Contact Us | CCH Online Store | Site Map    

  
navigation tabnavigation tab Home 
navigation tabnavigation tab About Us 
navigation tabnavigation tab Order Products 
navigation tabnavigation tab Press Center 
navigation tabnavigation tab Customer Service 
navigation tabnavigation tab Career Opportunities 
navigation tab
   HomePress CenterPress Releases
 
Press Releases
List By Date
Banking/Finance Institutions
Business Law
Corporate
Health Care and Entitlements
Human Resources
Securities
Tax
News Archives

For assistance with
stories, including
interviews with CCH
subject experts,
please contact
 
Eric Scott
847-267-2179
eric.scott@wolterskluwer.com

 

Contact Information

Leslie Bonacum
847-267-7153
mediahelp@cch.com
Neil Allen
847-267-2179
neil.allen@wolterskluwer.com

CCH Projects Key Tax Figures for 2008

(RIVERWOODS ILL., September 26, 2007) – The indexing of many features of the tax code will bring some relief to taxpayers next year, according to CCH, a Wolters Kluwer business and a leading provider of tax and accounting law information, software and services. CCH today released estimated income ranges for each 2008 tax bracket (CCHGroup.com).

Unlike many changes to the tax laws, which are effective for only limited periods of time, indexing has become a settled part of the tax code, according to George Jones, JD, CCH senior tax analyst.

“While some tax cuts in recent years are only temporary, and are scheduled to be followed by increases down the line, indexing works year after year, and it’s likely to be a part of the tax laws for the foreseeable future irrespective of whether Congress plans to tinker more with the tax rates themselves,” Jones noted.

Indexing of brackets lowers tax bills by including more of peoples’ incomes in lower brackets – in the 15-percent rather than the 25-percent bracket, for example.

“This also means that across-the-board inflation adjustments to the brackets provide more relief for those in the upper brackets, since they share in the reduction within each bracket, not just their own marginal tax bracket,” Jones said. 

Two examples show the modest tax savings generated by indexing:

  • Because of inflation adjustments, a married couple filing jointly with a total taxable income of $100,000 will pay $160 less in income taxes in 2008 than they will on the same income for 2007. 
  • A single filer with taxable income of $50,000 will save $80 next year due to the adjustments.

Inflation Adjustments

Since the late 1980s, the U.S. tax code has required that federal income tax brackets be adjusted for inflation annually, and inflation adjustments have been inserted into the Internal Revenue Code in recent years with increasing frequency. For example, the Code now requires over 50 other inflation-driven computations to determine deduction, exemption and exclusion amounts in addition to the 40 separate computations needed to inflation-adjust the tax bracket tables each year.

Most adjustments are based on Consumer Price Index figures for September through August immediately prior to the adjusted year.  However, inflation-adjusted figures for Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) have already been officially released for the first time this year because of an accelerated timetable required by the Tax Relief and Health Care Act of 2006. For calendar year 2007, taxpayers with high deductible health insurance plans may make deductions up to $2,850 for individuals with self-only coverage, and $5,650 for individuals with family coverage. For calendar year 2008, deductions may be claimed up to $2,900 for individuals with self-only coverage and $5,800 for individuals with family coverage.

CCH’s projections for other indexed amounts are based on the relevant inflation data released September 19, 2007, by the U.S. Department of Labor.

The IRS usually releases official numbers by December each year.  CCH tax bracket projections are provided for illustrative purposes only, and should not be used for income tax returns or other federal income tax related purposes until confirmed by the IRS later this year.

Some Items Not Indexed

Jones observed that some items in the Code are not indexed for inflation and stay the same, while others rise by dollar amounts already written into the tax law.

“The exemption amounts for the alternative minimum tax (AMT) are not indexed, which means that each year Congress must either increase the amounts by statute or expose additional households to the AMT,” Jones said.

In 2006, the AMT exemption amounts were $42,500 for single individuals and $62,550 for married couples filing jointly. The higher amounts lapsed and are now set for 2007 and again for 2008 at just $33,750 for individuals and $45,000 for married couples filing jointly. Congress, however, is expected to enact another round of temporary relief.

Standard Deduction, Personal Exemption Also Rise

The standard deduction and personal exemption amounts are also subject to indexing and these are projected to increase for 2008.  These increases can produce lower taxes by lowering the taxpayer’s taxable income.

Single taxpayers and married taxpayers filing separately could see a $100 increase over 2007 in their standard deduction, to $5,450, while the standard deduction for joint filers will increase by $200 to $10,900. Heads of households will see an increase in their standard deduction of $150, to $8,000.

The additional standard deduction for those age 65 or older or who are blind, will remain at $1,050 in 2008 for married individuals and surviving spouses, but will rise $50 to $1,350 for single filers. The personal exemption amount will go up in 2008 by $100 to $3,500.

These inflation adjustments can add up over time. For example, since the 1988 tax year, the standard deduction for joint filers has more than doubled, from $5,000 to the anticipated $10,900 amount for 2008.

Taxpayers can, however, lose a good portion of the value of personal exemptions and itemized deductions when their incomes rise above certain levels.  Those “phaseout” levels are also adjusted for inflation. For 2008, married couples filing jointly will begin to lose some of the value of any itemized deductions when their adjusted gross income exceeds $159,950. Likewise, they will begin to lose some of the value of their personal exemptions when their adjusted gross income exceeds $239,950.  However, some relief from this “stealth tax” is kicking in.

For 2008, the reduction in personal exemptions and itemized deductions is scheduled to be only one-third of what it was in 2005. That’s because both “phaseouts,” first started under the Revenue Reconciliation Act of 1990, are themselves now being phased out – by one-third in 2006 and 2007, two-thirds in 2008 and 2009 and completely repealed for 2010. For a complete look at how income ranges for each tax bracket are projected to shift next, see the attached CCH chart.

“Kiddie” Deduction, Gift Tax Exemption

In general, inflation adjustments are rounded to the next-lower multiple of $50, so if the adjustment produces an increase of less than $50, no increase is made.  The “kiddie” standard deduction, used on the returns of children who are claimed as dependents on their parents’ returns increased in 2001, from $700 to $750, and jumped next to $800 for 2004.  For 2006, it increased to $850 and stayed there for 2007. For 2008, it increases again, to $900, but it will apply to more “kiddies,” with the unearned income of child dependents up through 18 years old (23 years old if full-time students) being taxed at their parents’ rates.

The tax code only allows the gift tax exemption to rise when the inflation adjustment would produce an increase of $1,000 or more.  The last increase occurred at the beginning of 2006, when the exemption increased to its current $12,000.  This year’s inflation figures aren’t enough to push it over the next threshold, so it will stay at $12,000 for 2008.

About CCH, a Wolters Kluwer business

CCH, a Wolters Kluwer business (CCHGroup.com) is a leading provider of tax, audit and accounting information, software and services. It has served tax, accounting and business professionals and their clients since 1913. Among its market-leading products are The ProSystem fx® Office, CCH® Tax Research NetWork™, Accounting Research Manager® and the U.S. Master Tax Guide®. CCH is based in Riverwoods, Ill.

Wolters Kluwer is a leading global information services and publishing company. The company provides products and services for professionals in the health, tax, accounting, corporate, financial services, legal and regulatory sectors. Wolters Kluwer has 2006 annual revenues of €3.7 billion, employs approximately 19,900 people worldwide and maintains operations across Europe, North America, and Asia Pacific. Wolters Kluwer is headquartered in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Its shares are quoted on the Euronext Amsterdam (WKL) and are included in the AEX and Euronext 100 indices. For more information, visit www.wolterskluwer.com. 

 

CCH’S 2008 TAX PROJECTIONS1

Married Filing Jointly (& Surviving Spouse)

2008 Taxable Income

Tax Rate

2007 Taxable Income

Tax Rate

$0-$16,050

10%

$0-$15,650

10%

$16,050-$65,100

15%

$15,650-$63,700

15%

$65,100-$131,450

25%

$63,700-$128,500

25%

$131,450-$200,300

28%

$128,500-$195,850

28%

$200,300-$357,700

33%

$195,850-$349,700

33%

$357,700 +

35%

$349,700 +

35%

Married Filing Separately

2008 Taxable Income

Tax Rate

2007 Taxable Income

Tax Rate

$0-$8,025

10%

$0-$7,825

10%

$8,025-$32,550

15%

$7,825-$31,850

15%

$32,550-$65,725

25%

$31,850-$64,250

25%

$65,725-$100,150

28%

$64,250-$97,925

28%

$100,150-$178,850

33%

$97,925-$174,850

33%

$178,850 +

35%

$174,850 +

35%

Single Filers

2008 Taxable Income

Tax Rate

2007 Taxable Income

Tax Rate

$0-$8,025

10%

$0-$7,825

10%

$8,025-$32,550

15%

$7,825-$31,850

15%

$32,550-$78,850

25%

$31,850-$77,100

25%

$78,850-$164,550

28%

$77,100-$160,850

28%

$164,550-$357,700

33%

$160,850-$349,700

33%

$357,700 +

35%

$349,700 +

35%

 

 

 

 

Head of Household

2008 Taxable Income

Tax Rate

2007 Taxable Income

Tax Rate

$0-$11,450

10%

$0-$11,200

10%

$11,450-$43,650

15%

$11,200-$42,650

15%

$43,650-$112,650

25%

$42,650-$110,100

25%

$112,650-$182,400

28%

$110,100-$178,350

28%

$182,400-$357,700

33%

$178,350-$349,700

33%

$357,700 +

35%

$349,700 +

35%

 Standard Deduction Amounts

Filing Status

2008

2007

Increase

Married Filing Jointly
(& Surviving Spouse)

$10,900

$10,700

$200

Married Filing Separately

$5,450

$5,350

$100

Single

$5,450

$5,350

$100

Head of Household

$8,000

$7,850

$150

Standard Deduction for Dependents (“Kiddie” Standard Deduction)

2008

2007

Increase

$900

$850

$50

Income Level At Which 3-Percent Itemized Deduction Limitation Takes Effect (Adjusted Gross Income)

Filing Status

2008

2007

Increase

Married Filing Jointly
(& Surviving Spouse)

$159,950

$156,400

$3,550

Married Filing Separately

$79,975

$78,200

$1,775

Single

$159,950

$156,400

$3,550

Head of Household

$159,950

$156,400

$3,550

Personal Exemption Amounts

2008

2007

Increase

$3,500

$3,400

$100

 Threshold for Personal Exemption Phaseout

Filing Status

2008

2007

Increase

Married Filing Jointly
(& Surviving Spouse)

$239,950

$234,600

$5,350

Married Filing Separately

$119,975

$117,300

$2,675

Single

$159,950

$156,400

$3,550

Head of Household

$199,950

$195,500

$4,450

 Gift Tax Exemption

2008

2007

Increase

$12,000

$12,000

$0

 Income Limit for Full Roth IRA contribution

Filing Status

2008

2007

Increase

Married Filing Jointly

$159,000

$156,000

$3,000

Single

$101,000

$ 99,000

$2,000

1.) These numbers are projected for the 2008 tax year and have not been confirmed by the Internal Revenue Service.

-- ### --

nb-07-126

       


   © 2018, CCH INCORPORATED. All rights reserved.   

  Back to Top | Print this Page   
spacer