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Innocent Spouse Relief

Injured and Innocent Spouse Relief

Innocent Spouse Relief is a IRS program that allows you to reduce or relieve your of your tax liability if you filed a joint return with spouse or ex spouse. Filing your taxes together can save you money, but it also puts equal responsibility on both parties to pay the taxes, along with any penalties and interest. This is true even if the income is not equal.
If after the fact the IRS determines that more taxes are owed, they will try to collect from each party individually, whether they can reach them or not. The person who is most likely responsible for the debt many times will not make themselves available for collections. The IRS then goes after the “innocent spouse” to collect.

Types of Innocent Spouse Relief

Relief by Separation of Liability

This form of innocent spouse relief is when you have;
  1. You are separated or divorced from the spouse whom you filed the joint return you are requesting relief on.
  2. 12 months prior to the date that you file IRS Form-8857 requesting innocent spouse relief, you must not be a member of the same household of your spouse.

Original Innocent Spouse Relief

You may qualify for this if you;
  1. You previously filed a tax return with your spouse, or ex-spouse that you are asking to be relieved from. The tax returns must contain mistakes or wrongful information placed there by your spouse or ex-spouse indicating a lower tax liability than there really is.
  2. When the tax return was filed, you must prove that you did not know, and had no reason of knowing that this error had occurred.
  3. That based on your situation, it would be unfair for the IRS to hold you responsible for the understatement in tax debt. Some of the reasons of unfairness are;
    1. Whether you benefited from the debt
    2. Whether you were abandoned by your spouse or former spouse;
    3. Whether you are divorced or separated from your spouse;
    4. Whether you received any benefit on the return from the tax return.

Equitable Relief

This form of innocent spouse relief is only an option if you do not qualify for the relief by separation, or the original innocent spouse relief. The IRS created this to help those who did not qualify based on the other programs, but still is not responsible for the debt.
To qualify for equitable relief you must;
  1. You do not meet the qualifications for innocent spouse relief, or relief by separation of liability.
  2. You have to be legally divorced, or separated from the spouse you are claiming relief from.
  3. You cannot be living in the sale household of your former spouse.

Filing for Innocent Spouse Relief

The IRS is very strict when it comes to innocent spouse relief, in order to qualify you must complete IRS Form-8857, and the IRS will determine if you qualify. It is recommended that you speak with a professional who has experiences and can tell you if you qualify or not.

Get Innocent Spouse Relief - Free Case Review

Tax Attorney.com works with attorneys, CPA’s, Enrolled Agents, and tax professionals who specialize in innocent spouse relief. They have years of experience handling and preparing the cases, and can let you know whether you are a strong candidate for innocent spouse relief or not. To discuss your option, and find out whether innocent spouse relief is right for you, contact us online, or call us at 888-241-0002 to speak with a tax specialist today.
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