We both require a car throughout the day for work, so I don't think we can drop one of them
If her work requires her to have a car, then why aren't they
paying for it?
same reason BK doesn't pay for their drive through workers to have a car, I guess. How else will she get to work?
I apologize if this comes off as rude, but it really sounds like her mother is taking advantage of her.
I know it's not a good situation finance-wise, but it's what her family situation is right now (her dad was laid off a couple months ago)
No chance of a job change. She and her mom are the two that run the place, and the business is her parents primary income right now.
Hypothetically speaking, if she did
quit, could her mother find someone else to replace her at the same salary? If the answer is "no," then your fiance is basically giving charity to your mother. She is deliberately working below her income potential.
Put it this way: If it were anyone other than her mother, would she put up with such a low income for so much work? It sounds like the answer is a clear "no."
Right, I doubt someone would take her job for the pay she receives, and I doubt her mom could afford to hire anyone different.
Her degree is in what she does, and the income potential for isn't that great right now.
How does a degree in "running a barn" cost $65k? Or does she do the books for the business? The website? Typesetting/copyrighting? Marketing? Can you help us out with a little more detail?
Mostly a poor choice of college (private school!). She says she wishes she didn't go through college for her degree, because of the loans and because she had learned so much of what they taught in the program from just growing up at the barn. Pesky hindsight!
It would be nice if she could just get some more of her expenses covered without actually being income, for tax purposes.
I agree, but I don't think taxes are necessarily the problem. Someone with an income that low doesn't pay very much income tax anyway. The problem is her income is too low.
Taxes are one part of the problem, with the self employment tax and income tax, she can barely cover the estimated payments (which are now about $900/quarter). I think not having withholding hurts her, since she has so little money to put towards savings after the student loans, etc.
There's no easy answer here. She will never prosper on $18k/year. She could make more as a waitress in a restaurant. She's crippling herself out of a sense of duty to her mother.
Yeah, I know she's not going to get rich or barely break even, if the business doesn't start propsering again soon.