Innocent Spouse Relief

Filing a joint return for the great majority of spouses is the best filing status for enjoying the most benefits, including lower income tax, and generally better deductions and credits. The main issue with filing joint is that both spouses are jointly and severally liable for the income tax, penalties, and interest from the return.

The IRS Restructuring and Reform Act of 1998 provided three distinct grounds for relief from a joint income tax liability for a spouse.

  • 6015 (b) – Innocent Spouse is where spouse will not be responsible for erroneous items taken by the spouse who filed the return.
  • 6015(c) – Separation of Liability allows for the separation of liability as if the spouse had filed separately.
  • 6015(f) – Equitable Relief is for equitable relief where it is inequitable to hold an individual for any unpaid tax or any deficiency; the Secretary may grant relief.

Living in a community property state does limit the relief benefits when compared to non-community property states, but there is still some relief to be found under certain circumstances.

You should not have to suffer undeserved stress and financial hardship due to the poor judgment or actions of your spouse.  Let us assist in alleviating you of this situation so you can have peace of mind without any tax issues hanging over you.