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2012 Tax Brackets and Standard Deduction

How Do Tax Brackets Work?

Just a brief reminder before we get to the tax bracket tables: Being in a given tax bracket does not mean that all of your income is taxed at that rate. Rather, only the portion of your income that is in that bracket is taxed at that rate.

For example, as you can see from the table below, a single taxpayer with taxable income of $8,701 would be in the 15% tax bracket. However, his first $8,700 of income would only be subject to a 10% income tax. It’s only the final dollar of income — the one dollar that’s in the 15% bracket — that would be taxed at 15%.

(See this article for a more thorough explanation.)

Single 2012 Tax Brackets

Taxable Income
Marginal Tax Rate:
$0-$8,700 10%
$8,701-$35,350 15%
$35,351-$85,650 25%
$85,651-$178,650 28%
$178,651-$388,350 33%
$388,351+ 35%

Married Filing Jointly 2012 Tax Brackets

Taxable Income
Marginal Tax Rate:
$0-$17,400 10%
$17,401-$70,700 15%
$70,701-$142,700 25%
$142,701-$217,450 28%
$217,451-$388,350 33%
$388,351+ 35%

Head of Household 2012 Tax Brackets

Taxable Income
Marginal Tax Rate:
$0-$12,400 10%
$12,401-$47,350 15%
$47,351-$122,300 25%
$122,301-$198,050 28%
$198,051-$388,350 33%
$388,351+ 35%

Married Filing Separately 2012 Tax Brackets

Taxable Income
Marginal Tax Rate:
$0-$8,700 10%
$8,701-$35,350 15%
$35,351-$71,350 25%
$71,351-$108,725 28%
$108,726-$194,175 33%
$194,176+ 35%

2012 Standard Deduction and Exemption

For 2012 the personal exemption is $3,800, and the standard deductions are:

  • $5,950 for single taxpayers and married taxpayers filing separately,
  • $11,900 for married taxpayers filing jointly, and
  • $8,700 for taxpayers filing as head of household.

The additional standard deduction for taxpayers who are blind or over age 65 remains unchanged at $1,450 for single taxpayers and $1,150 for married taxpayers.

For More Information, See My Related Book:

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Taxes Made Simple: Income Taxes Explained in 100 Pages or Less

Topics Covered in the Book:
  • The difference between deductions, exemptions, and credits,
  • Itemized deductions vs. the standard deduction,
  • Several money-saving deductions and credits and how to make sure you qualify for them,
  • Click here to see the full list.

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