Do you transfer money to your spouse’s account so they can meet their personal expenses? Did you know you will have to pay taxes on them? Let’s understand why and how you can save tax by transferring money to your wife’s account?
Shares may have been purchased in your wife’s name or fixed deposits may be placed in her name – but the gains from the wife’s shares or income from such fixed deposits shall be clubbed with your income. Under Income Tax, this is considered as your own income and taxed at slab rates applicable for you. If there are capital losses from sale, they get added too.
There could be a situation where you have genuinely transferred money to your wife’s account to meet her financial needs, for example, to help her start a business. This amount is considered as a loan if it is to be returned with interest. In case you are charging a reasonable interest and showing this as a source of income, the income earned by your wife may not be clubbed with yours.
However, the amount you loaned to your wife may be utilised to invest in shares to earn an income, and thereby you end up saving significant tax by avoiding clubbing of income (gains) on shares. Then, it may be hard to convince the tax authorities about the lender-borrower arrangement, given the close relationship of the parties and the tax savings involved. Usually, the provision is misused as a tax saving avenue and that is what the tax authorities want to be careful of.
If you are married and either of you is a homemaker and has no income, it is common for this person to receive some money to take care of personal expenses. This has no income tax implications and is not considered as an income in the receiver’s hands. However, any interest earned from a bank account may still be clubbed. Here’s a complete detail regarding clubbing of income, in case you need it.
To increase income tax savings, there are various tax benefits that can be availed by the spouse. The following are some of the ways to maximize tax savings with the help of your spouse or family:
Under Section 112A, a tax exemption of up to Rs. 1 lakh can be claimed each year on long-term capital gains from equity shares or equity-specific units of schemes if the Security Transaction Tax (STT) has been paid. This exemption can be claimed by both spouses by investing in the shares or schemes jointly.
Under Section 80D, an individual and HUF can claim a deduction of up to Rs. 25,000 for health insurance premiums. If the cost of health insurance is higher than this limit, both of you can purchase the policies in such a way that you can exhaust the deduction limits and save maximum taxes.
A deduction of up to Rs. 1.5 lakh can be claimed under Section 80C for expenses incurred towards the education of two children. If there are more than two children or if the education expenses are more than Rs 1.5 lakh, the other spouse can claim the deduction for the additional fees or other children.
Home Loan Benefits: Both spouses can claim the deduction for home loan repayments and interest payments if they are joint owners of the property and co-borrowers of the home loan.
If both spouses are employed, they can claim deduction for a total of four journeys for four years under the LTA instead of two.
By availing these tax benefits, the spouses can minimize the tax liability for the family as a unit and maximize their income tax savings.