Are Both Spouses Responsible For A Back Tax Debt?

Marriages usually start with a beautiful story: two people meet, the fall in love, they promise to commit to each other, they have a beautiful wedding and ride off into the sunset together. Sigh… But reality tends to paint a bit of a different picture. It’s messy. Maybe the in-laws are unhappy with who their precious daughter chose. There could be children involved that are having a hard time adjusting. One spouse could owe income taxes from years ago. After the wedding, real life awaits and it’s important to be prepared.

Are Both Spouses Responsible For A Back Tax Debt?

The IRS considers every taxpayer as an individual regardless of marital status. Are you responsible for accruing the debt? There are ways for your spouse to be released from liability. Did you and your spouse incur the debt together? Then you are both responsible. What if you’re spouse started a business while you were married that doesn’t have your name on it? Are you still responsible?

Since the IRS considers every taxpayer as an individual, in many cases, the spouse who is not responsible for the tax debt (meaning the tax debt incurred before you were married and in other circumstances.) Form 8379 is a form that can be filled out by the taxpayer or his/her representative that will inform the IRS that your spouse is innocent in the tax debt and that he/she is not responsible to pay it back.

Filing this form protects any refund the innocent spouse is due while the refunds due to the spouse that owes the debt is usually kept by the IRS and applied to the back taxes.

Can I Tell If We Can Obtain The Innocent Spouse Status?

The innocent spouse status is almost always applicable if you were not married at the time the tax debt occurred. There are other instances that can be a little trickier when it comes to tax debt that occurred after you were married. Contact an Enrolled Agent to help you properly make this determination. An Enrolled Agent is recommended over a tax attorney since no crime has been committed or purposeful wrong-doing was done. A Certified Public Accountant is great with numbers and may be able to help but when it comes to familiarity with tax law and procedure, an Enrolled Agent; a tax professional whose sole focus is tax (as opposed to bookkeeping or courtroom appearance preparation) would be able to provide you with fast and efficient help.

Who Do I Go To For Help?

IRS Tax Relief Now has Enrolled Agents with over 30 years of experience in working with the IRS to resolve back tax issues. This is what we specialize in. We are a full service tax firm with the competent capability to resolve your issues and then help you avoid further trouble with the IRS by taking care of your future tax returns (if you should so choose) and any other tax needs that may arise.

We are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. We understand that these burning questions don’t have business hours so our tax professionals have arranged their schedules so that we are always available to you.

We invite you to get to know us better by browsing our website. We have several pages of information available to you to educate you on your tax issue. In addition, we have provided a convenient link to our page at the Better Business Bureau where you will see that we’ve never had a complaint reported by any of our clients. Our A+ rating speaks for itself. When you’re ready, use the chat online option to contact us or give us a call at 888.332.8959.

Our first conversation with you will consist of a comprehensive evaluation of your tax issue. We will comb through the options you have to resolve the issue and put together a plan of action to get you compliant. Your responsibility for the tax debt as the spouse will also be addressed in order to provide the most protection possible. We will listen to your concerns, your goals and the specifics of your circumstances. We will help you climb out of the hole that you are in.

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