Ed and Wendy are a married couple with no children. Each earns $85,000 per year, and their combined household adjusted gross income is $170,000. John and Kristen also have $170,000 in combined household adjusted gross income and no children. However, Kristen earns all of the income; John does not work.
a. Use the 2009 tax rates for married couples filing jointly described in Chapter 18 to compute how much income tax each couple owes. Assume that both take the standard deduction.
b. Does either couple pay a “marriage tax?” Does either couple receive a “marriage benefit?”