Filing Your Tax Return? Here Are The 2011 Tax Brackets

Are you in the process of filing your 2011 tax return?

If so, you’ll probably need to know what the 2011 tax brackets are.  The brackets change every year based on the rate of inflation and determine what amount of tax you actually pay.

Keep in mind however that you don’t necessarily pay tax on all your income at the same rate.  Keep reading to learn more.

2011 tax brackets

The tax brackets in 2011 depend on your filing status as follows:

Tax rate Single Head of Household Married Filing Jointly or Surviving Spouse Married Filing Separately
10% Up to $8,500 Up to $12,150 Up to $17,000 Up to $8,500
15% $8,501 to $34,500 $12,151 to $46,250 $17,001 to $69,000 $8,501 to $34,500
25% $34,501 to $83,600 $46,251 to $119,400 $69,001 to $139,350 $34,501 to $69,675
28% $83,601 to $174,400 $119,401 to $193,350 $139,351 to $212,300 $69,676 to $106,150
33% $174,401    to $379,150 $193,351 to $379,150 $212,301 to $379,150 $105,151 to $189,575 
35% $379,151 or more $379,151 or more $379,151 or more $189,576 or more

The ‘marginal’ tax rate

The US tax system is ‘progressive’, meaning that the amount of income taxes you pay increases in steps as your income increases

For example, if you made $60,000 in 2011 you won’t simply owe 25 per cent of all your income ($15,000) to the IRS.

In 2011, if you are a single taxpayer your tax would have been worked out as follows:

So, your total tax bill would be $11,125 as your tax is charged at different rates.

This also means that your ‘real’ or ‘effective’ tax rate on the $60,000 is 18.54 percent even though your marginal tax rate, which is the rate applied to the last dollar of income that you earned, is 25 per cent.

It is also important to keep in mind that this example also uses your gross earnings.  In reality you would be able to reduce this final taxable amount through deductions, adjustments and exemptions.  This will have the effect of reducing your income to a lower taxable level.

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