Federal Income Tax Rates for Tax Year 2014

Personal Tax Rates and Brackets for 2014

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The U.S. federal government taxes personal income using a graduated or progressive scale. Tax rates began at 10% in 2014 and gradually increased to 15%, then 25%, 28%, 33%, 35%, and finally a top rate of 39.6%. 

Each tax rate applies to a specific range of income called a tax bracket. Where each bracket begins and ends depends on a taxpayer’s filing status. Tax rates can also vary depending on the type of income.

Ordinary tax rates apply to most sources of income. 

Ordinary Tax Rates for Single Filing Status

From       Up To       Rate       Tax         Total Tax 

$0$9,075× 0.10$907$907
9,07636,900× 0.154,1745,081
36,90189,350× 0.2513,11218,193
89,351186,350× 0.2827,16045,353
186,351405,100× 0.3372,187117,540
405,101406,750× 0.35577118,117
406,751--× 0.396  

Tax and total tax in the final row would depend upon how much income falls into the 39.6% bracket—how much did a filer earns over $406,750? These numbers have been rounded off to the dollar for simplicity's sake. 

Do the Math

Start by figuring out the individual's taxable ordinary income, then use the first two columns to determine the range into which this income falls. Then multiply the applicable portion of income against the tax rate for that bracket. The total for each level of income is then added to the last to calculate the overall tax. 

Let's say that you're single and you earned $80,000 in 2014.

According to the 2014 tax brackets:

  • The first $9,075 would be taxed at the rate of 10%, for a total of $907.
  • The next $27,825 of income, that which falls between $9,076 and $36,900, is multiplied by 15%, arriving at a tax of $4,174. 
  • Finally, the balance of your income over $36,900, and up to your $80,000 income, falls into the 25% bracket. Tax on this portion of your income—$43,099—works out to $10,775. 

    Add each segment together to come up with a total tax liability of $15,856.

    Here's how it breaks down for other filing statuses.

    Ordinary Tax Rates for Head of Household Filing Status

    From       Up To       Rate       Tax         Total Tax 

    $0$12,950× 0.10$1,295$1,295
    12,95149,400× 0.155,4676,762.50
    49,401127,550× 0.259,1125,587.50
    127,551206,600× 0.2822,1349,414.00
    206,601405,100× 0.3365,50519,744.00
    405,101432,200× 0.359,48527,846.00
    432,201--× 0.396  

    Ordinary Tax Rates for Married Filing Separately Filing Status

    From       Up To       Rate       Tax         Total Tax 

    $0$9,075× 0.10$907$907 
    9,07636,900× 0.154,174 5,081
    36,90174,425× 0.259,38114,462
    74,426113,425× 0.2810,92025,382
    113,426202,550× 0.3329,41154,793
    202,551228,800× 0.359,18764,160
    228,801--× 0.396  

    Note that the 39.6% tax bracket begins for this filing status at incomes of almost $178,000 less than that of single filers. 

    Ordinary Tax Rates for Married Filing Jointly and Qualifying Widow or Widower

    From       Up To       Rate       Tax         Total Tax 

    $0$18,150× 0.10$1,815  $1,815
    18,15173,800× 0.158,34710,162 
    73,801148,850× 0.2518,76228,924 
    148,851226,850× 0.28 21,84050,764 
    226,851405,100× 0.3358,822 109,586 
    405,101457,600× 0.3518,735 128,321 
    457,601--× 0.396  

    Other Tax Rates in Effect for 2014

    In addition to federal income taxes on ordinary income, the following taxes can also apply: 

    • Social Security tax at a rate of 12.4% on wages and self-employment income up to the annual Social Security wage base of $117,000 in 2014. Employees pay 6.2% and employers must match this. Self-employed taxpayers pay the full 12.4%. 
    • Medicare tax at a rate of 2.9% on wages and self-employment income. This tax is also divided between employers and employees. Self-employed individuals must pay the entire 2.9%. 
    • Additional Medicare tax at a rate of 0.9% on wages and self-employment income over $250,000 if you’re married and filing jointly, $125,000 if you’re married and filing separately, or $200,000 if you file as single, head of household, or qualifying widow(er), as of 2014. 
    • The alternative minimum tax (AMT) is 26% of taxable income under $91,250 as recalculated under the AMT rules, or 28% on taxable income over $91,250 if you’re married and filing separately. All other taxpayers pay 26% on AMT taxable income under $182,500 or 28% of AMT taxable income over $182,500. Again, these are 2014 rates and thresholds. 
    • Net investment income is taxed at a rate a rate of 3.8% on the lower of net investment income or modified adjusted gross income over the following thresholds in 2014: $250,000 for qualifying widow(ers) and those filing joint married returns, $200,000 for single filers and those filing as head of household, and $125,000 for married individuals who file separate returns.
    • Capital gains tax rates vary depending on whether the gains are short-term or long-term. Short-term gains are taxed at ordinary income tax rates. Long-term gains and qualified dividends are taxed at the following rates: zero percent if taxable ordinary income falls in the 10% or 15% tax brackets, 15% if taxable income falls in the 25, 28, 33 or 35% tax brackets, 20% if taxable income falls in the 39.6% marginal tax bracket, 25% on depreciation recapture, 28% on collectibles, and 28% of qualified small business stock after exclusion.

    How to Use Your Marginal Tax Rate

    Individuals can use these tax rate schedules in a number of ways to help plan their finances. For example, you can figure out how much tax you'll pay on any extra income you earn if you take on a second job. If the extra income pushes you into the 25% tax bracket, it will be taxed at that rate until it reaches the next tax bracket range of 28%.

    You can also use these tax rates to figure out how much you'll save by increasing your deductions. A taxpayer in the 28% tax bracket will save 28 cents in federal tax for every dollar spent on a tax-deductible expenses such as mortgage interest or charity.

    Remember that different intervals of income are taxed at different rates and the income intervals at which the rates apply are based on your filing status. These marginal tax rates interact with other tax rates, particularly the alternative minimum tax which can push income to a higher tax rate or eliminate the tax savings of certain types of deductions.

    NOTE: Tax laws change periodically, and you should consult with a tax professional for the most up-to-date advice. The information contained in this article is not intended as tax advice and is not a substitute for tax advice.