Welcome back. So, let's take what we've learned from

our first seven modules and tackle a comprehensive example.

Meet Jerry and Elaine.

Both are age 40.

They're married and they file a joint tax return.

They have two chidren,

Kramer and George, ages 16 and 12.

Jerry and Elaine have the following items of income.

They have a combined $150,000 of wages.

They have interests from a city of Chicago bond of $4,000.

They have interests from a US Treasury bond of $5,000.

They received a gift from Elaine's mother of

a new automobile, which has a fair market value of $15,000.

They received a refund of $5,000 from the state of Illinois

for state and local income taxes they had previously deducted on a prior year tax return.

They have a short-term capital loss of $10,000 from the sale of stock.

This particular stock does not qualify for special treatment under section 1244.

They also incurred the following expenses during the year.

They have contributions of $3,500 each,

to Jerry and Elaine's traditional IRAs.

So, that's $7,000 in total, and

neither Jerry or Elaine is covered by a qualified retirement plan at work.

They have qualified medical expenses of

$15,000, which were not reimbursed by insurance or any other party.

They have personal credit card interest expense of $3,000;

charitable contributions of $6,000.

They have a speeding violation ticket they paid that was $300.

They have mortgage interest on their principal residence of $10,000.

The mortgage debt itself is $300,000.

They paid property taxes on their principal residence of $6,000.

They paid income taxes to the state of Illinois totaling $8,000.

So, looking at these facts,

let's calculate Jerry and Elaine's gross income, deductions for AGI,

AGI, deductions from AGI, taxable income,

federal tax liability, their average tax rate,

their effective tax rate, and their marginal tax rate.

So, the first place to start is gross income.

What items are includable in gross income versus excludable, or excluded, from gross income?

First, let's look at wages.

These are going to be includable in gross income.

The interests from the US Treasury bonds are also includable in gross income.

You'll recall that interests from federal bonds,

those issued by the United States government, are taxable.

However, the interest from the city of Chicago bond is not includable in

gross income, and that's because municipal bond interest is excluded from gross income.

As a reminder, municipal bonds are bonds issued by a state or local government--

for example, the state of Illinois or the city of Champaign.

Moving on down, the value of the car is excluded from gross income because it is a gift.

Gifts are non-taxable to the recipient.

The Illinois tax refund is included because it was deducted in the prior year.

This is an application of the tax benefit rule.

We took a deduction for a payment that we made,

so when that payment is refunded,

we must reverse out the deduction by including the refund

and gross income when we receive it.

Finally, we get to the $10,000 capital loss.

Since this is the only item on Jerry and Elaine's return

that involves a capital, or section 1231 asset,

those are things we'll learn about in a later course,

we don't need to do any netting.

But you will recall that taxpayers are only allowed

to deduct a net capital loss of up to $3,000.

That means that $7,000 of this loss cannot

be used in the current year and will instead become a carryover.

So, we include in gross income

just $3,000 of the loss.

So, when we add up wages,

the federal bond interests,

the taxable state refund, and the $3,000 capital loss,

we come up with a taxable gross income of $157,000.

Next, let's look at deductions for AGI.

First, let's look at the traditional IRA contributions that Jerry and Elaine made.

Because Jerry and Elaine are not covered by a retirement plan at work,

there are no AGI restrictions on their ability to deduct a traditional IRA contribution.

So, they can both contribute to their IRA up to

the contribution limit, which in 2018 is $5,500 per taxpayer.

Here, they contributed $3,500 each,

so that's $7,000 in total.

It's below the limit and it's a for-AGI deduction, or an above-the- line deduction.

Looking down the list,

there are no other for-AGI deductions.

So, this is going to make our AGI $150,000--that is,

$157,000 of gross income minus the $7,000 for-AGI deduction for the IRAs.

Next, we'll move on to calculate our from-AGI deductions.

So, first, we'll need to compare the size of

the standard deduction to our taxpayers' itemized deductions.

So, here, how are Jerry and Elaine filing their tax return?

Probably, married filing jointly, since that

usually, but not always, generates the best tax results for a married couple.

So, we'll go ahead and assume the couple is filing married filing jointly.

So, that would put their standard deduction in 2018 at $24,000.

This means, if we can get our itemized deductions to exceed $24,000,

we'll itemize; if not,

we'll stick with the standard deduction.

So, looking back at Jerry and Elaine's expenditures,

let's see if we can spot any allowable itemized deductions.

First, medical expenses.

They incurred $15,000 of

qualified medical expenses that were not

reimbursed by insurance or any other third party.

Qualified medical expenses are an itemized deduction, but they are limited.

We can only deduct those qualified medical expenses which exceed the AGI floor,

which in 2018 is 7.5 percent of AGI.

We previously computed the couple's AGI to be $150,000;

7.5 percent of 150,000 is 11,250.

So only those qualified medical expenses that exceed 11,250 can be deducted.

Fifteen thousand minus 11,250 gives us our deduction, $3,750.

The next from-AGI deduction is for charitable contributions of $6,000.

Charitable deductions have an AGI ceiling for

individuals, meaning that the total deduction

for charitables cannot exceed some percentage

of AGI, depending on the type of contribution.

In the case of cash contributions,

it's a 60 percent of AGI ceiling, starting in 2018.

But we can see here, based on our taxpayer's AGI and the amount of

their charitable contributions, we're not even close to any applicable ceiling.

So the whole $6,000 in contributions are going to be deductible as an itemized deduction.

The next from-AGI deduction is for mortgage interest on the couple's primary residence.

This is $10,000.

Because the mortgage balance is below the applicable cap,

there are going to be able to deduct the full $10,000.

Next, let's take a look at the couple's state and local taxes paid.

First, we have local property taxes on the residence of

$6,000 as well as state income taxes paid to the state of Illinois of $8,000.

These are both from-AGI itemized deductions.

But you'll recall that there's currently, from tax year 2018 through tax year

2025, a $10,000 cap on the amount of

state and local taxes that can be deducted as an itemized deduction.

So, they paid 14,000 but 10,000 is all we can deduct. And I'll note

here that the speeding violation ticket of $300 is not going to be deductible, and the

$3,000 in personal credit card interest is also not going to be deductible.

So, when we add up all of the itemized deductions,

we come up to 29,750,

which is higher than the standard deduction for a married couple filing jointly.

So for Jerry and Elaine,

we'll go ahead and itemize, since it's the larger of the two.

So, let's take what we've done so far and put it into our tax calculation.

We have includable gross income of $157,000,

we then subtracted out $7,000 of IRA contributions as a

for-AGI deduction, which gave us an AGI of $150,000.

We then deducted our itemized deductions of 29,750,

and because we don't have any income from

a sole proprietorship or a pass-through business,

we don't need to worry about that 20 percent qualified business income deduction.

So, this gives us taxable income of $120,250.

Let's take this amount to the tax table to see what Jerry

and Elaine's total tax is going to be.

On the married filing jointly tax table,

we'll look for the interval that contains

the couple's taxable income, which we'll find on the third row of the table.

We'll then plug in our taxable income number into the calculation and find that

the couple's total tax is going to come out to $18,334.

But we're not going to stop there.

Remember that Jerry and Elaine had some dependents living in their household.

They had two children under the age of 17.

So, assuming that George and Kramer meet all the other requirements of being

a qualifying child, and because the couple is

below the applicable AGI phaseout threshold,

they're going to be eligible for a child tax credit, and

that credit is going to be worth $2,000 per child.

So, this is going to reduce their total tax bill by $4,000, taking it down to $14,334.

So now that we know the couple's total tax,

let's compute their average tax rate,

effective tax rate, and marginal tax rate.

First, let's calculate the average tax.

You'll recall that the average tax rate is

the federal tax liability divided by the tax base, or here taxable income.

So, here Jerry and Elaine's federal tax liability is 14,334.

If we divide that by their taxable income, 120,250,

we get an average tax rate of approximately 11.9 percent.

The effective tax rate is their total tax divided by total income.

So, here we're going to use $169,000 as total income, which is

the sum of all their income items, including the excluded municipal bond interests,

the excluded value of the gift, and the full value of their capital loss.

This is going to give us an effective tax rate of approximately 8.5 percent.

Finally, what is Jerry and Elaine's marginal tax rate? Here,

the marginal tax rate is going to be the rate

applied on the next dollar of income earned.

If Jerry and Elaine were to earn one more dollar of income,

the tax rate that would apply would be

22 percent, and we can infer that right off the tax table.