Did you know that if you file a joint income tax return with your spouse it’s possible to lose your refund? When your spouse has outstanding tax debts prior to your marriage or from filing a separate return during your marriage, the filing of a subsequent joint return places any tax refund in jeopardy. The IRS can apply the entire refund to a tax debt which is not yours. The IRS takes this approach even though you have a separate and distinct interest in the joint refund.
With the help of our Boca Raton tax resolution services and the use of the injured spouse rules you can receive the portion of the joint refund allocable to you.
You are considered an injured spouse if:
- You file a joint return;
- You are not liable for the back tax debt; and
- You have reported income on the return, or
- You claim the earned income credit or other refundable credit, or
- You made and reported tax payments such as estimated taxes or tax withheld from your wages.
Form 8379, Injured Spouse Allocation
You can request your share of the refund by filing Form 8379, Injured Spouse Allocation, which allocates income taxes withheld and estimated tax payments, personal exemptions, and any refundable credits between you and your spouse.
Part I of Form 8879 requests certain information from you to confirm that that you are an injured spouse. Part II simply asks for names and social security numbers, who is the injured spouse and where you want your refund to be mailed. Part III allocates income, deductions, exemptions, credits and taxes withheld or paid between the spouses as if separate returns had been filed.
Based upon this information, the IRS will determine the amount of your refund due. This process can take as long as 11-14 weeks, depending on whether you efile or paper file your tax return. You must file Form 8379 for each year that you qualify for injured spouse relief and want your allocable share of the joint refund.
If you need help requesting injured spouse status or require other tax resolution services in Boca Raton, call us today at 561-826-9303 for a free consultation.