Tax Benefits of Marriage
You can transfer an unlimited amount of assets to your spouse at any time, free from tax. That also includes leaving assets in your estate to your spouse without estate or gift tax subjection." And just to clarify, gift tax, as defined by the IRS, is a tax on the transfer of property by one individual to another while receiving nothing, or less than full value, in return. So, basically, a gift is giving property or money without expecting to receive equal value in return.
f either you or your spouse don't qualify for your own Social Security benefits, you can receive the other spouse's benefits. The payoff isn't immediate, though -- you have to either be at least 62 years old or be any age but caring for a child who can receive benefits and is younger than 16 years old or disabled. You can also potentially receive Medicare, disability, veterans, military and pension plan benefits through your spouse. (And although this is a bit of a buzzkill statement, knowledge is power. If your marriage ends but lasted at least 10 years, you may still be able to receive Social Security benefits on your former spouse's record. Aside from that, you'd also have entitlement to spousal support.)
An Individual Retirement Account can be used a few ways in the course of a marriage, including rolling over a deceased spouse's IRA to your own, or you can contribute to a spousal IRA, which is an account that lets an employed spouse contribute to an unemployed spouse's retirement account. There's one caveat, though: You must file a joint tax return to do this..
If you're married, you can have the status as next-of-kin for hospital visits, which grants you the ability to make medical decisions in the event your spouse becomes sick or disabled. "You also have the legal right to sue for wrongful death of a spouse and have decision-making power with respect to whether a deceased partner will be cremated or not and where to bury him or her,"
A spouse can inherit an entire estate without tax consequences. "If the couple is not married, there will be taxes," Rower says. And if there's no will, a spouse still has inheritance rights when the other spouse dies intestate -- meaning a person passed away without making a legal will.
Health and Employment Benefits to Being Married
Health Insurance Benefits If you're married, you can usually get on your spouse's health insurance and get a family rate. This is helpful when one spouse may not have health insurance through their own employer or isn't currently employed.
Paternity Child Benefits If any issues ever arise over the paternity of a child with a married couple, the married couple may have less of an issue. "If a child is born in New York state to a married couple, there's virtually no issue of paternity," Mitchell says
Leave Benefits Through your employer you can usually take a family leave if your spouse is sick, or bereavement leave if your spouse or someone in your spouse's immediate family passes away.