My spouse stopped working due to illness and we're adjusting the deductions I'm currently claiming. This is a part of taxes that I've never understood well, other than the basic, more deductions = more money in each paycheck.
Currently, I'm claiming two federal and two state. Last tax season, we owed the feds about 600 dollars but received a refund from the state to the tune of 2600 dollars. My spouse was working two part time jobs at the time we filed.
In essence, are there some guidelines here I could follow to get an idea of how to about break even next tax season or to at least hold on to a little more of each paycheck? Even before this most recent event, clearly my deductions could use adjustment. Could anyone give some pointers?
More context if it's useful: I live in California and my taxes are fairly uncomplicated. I work a salaried, white collar job. We don't have investments, equity or assets other than my tiny 401(k), neither of us are legally disabled, veterans/government employees or people with any other special statuses. We have no children or other dependents. We file jointly as a married couple for both federal and state.