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Tag Archive for Innocent Spouse Relief

The Flood That Didn’t Materialize When The IRS Removed The Two-Year Period For Requesting Equitable Innocent Spouse Relief And Granted Relief More Frequently

Innocent spouse relief, which has been available under IRC § 6015 since 1998 (and was available prior to that, in a more limited way, under IRC § 6015(e)), provides three avenues of relief. Section 6015(b) provides “traditional” relief for deficiencies.

Section 6015(c) also provides relief for deficiencies for certain spouses who are divorced, separated, widowed, or not living together, by allocating the liability between the spouses. Section 6015(f) provides “equitable” relief from both deficiencies and underpayments, but only applies if a taxpayer is not eligible for relief under IRC § 6015(b) or (c).

As I reported in my 2001 Annual Report to Congress, the IRS received 46,619 claims for innocent spouse relief in fiscal year (FY) 1999 (i.e., from October 1, 1998, to September 30, 1999). The IRS received 54,402 claims for relief in FY 2000.

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When To Request A Collection Due Process Hearing

What is A Collection Due Process Hearing?

A collection due process (CDP) hearing gives you one last chance to avoid a federal tax lien or tax levy. You will know you have a right to request a CDP hearing because you will receive a CDP notice. This notice is sent when any of the following IRS collection actions are being taken:

  • Filing of a Federal tax lien
  • Bank account levy
  • Jeopardy Levy
  • Levy on Your State Tax Refund

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The Case Of The Secret Divorce And The Not So Innocent Spouse

Question:

What do a weekend trip to Mexico, a sneaky spouse, and a tax protest letter have in common?

Answer:

They are all components of a taxpayer’s losing plea for tax relief in front of the California State Board of Equalization.*

THE FACTS

Charles and Vickie Sine filed a joint California resident tax return (Form 540) for tax year 2005.  It subsequently came to the attention of the Franchise Tax Board that they had Read more

Innocent Spouse Relief

Many married taxpayers choose to file a joint tax return because of the benefits to be derived from this filing status. On a joint return, both taxpayers are jointly and individually responsible for the tax and any interest or penalty due on the return, even if they later divorce. This is true even if a divorce decree should state that your former spouse will be solely responsible for any amounts due on previously filed joint returns.

The situation can exist, then, where one spouse could be held responsible for all the tax due, even if all the income was earned by the other spouse. In cases like this, the IRS, in the interest of equity may allow a spouse in such a situation to be relieved of tax, interest, and penalties that are due on the joint tax return. Read more

Who Is Liable To Pay Back Taxes When Filing Jointly?

“I didn’t do it! She did!” you say, as you sit in my office explaining the current, messy state of your financial affairs. Let’s say your wife failed to report her income from running a daycare facility out of your home, and since she handles your taxes, you had no idea. Now you’re separated, on the road to divorce, the IRS is calling you more often than your mother, and you need to know your options.

When married taxpayers file jointly, the letter of the law states that both taxpayers are “jointly and severally liable” for the tax, and “any additions to tax, interest, or penalties that arise as a result of the joint return even if they later divorce.”(IRS) That “severally” means that each spouse is entirely responsible for the whole sum of taxes, interest and penalties. So, even if one spouse earned all the income, the other spouse is just as Read more

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