File Joint Tax Return Each of You Are Responsible

by Kenneth Hoffman in ,

If you file a joint tax return, you're generally liable for taxes on the return if your spouse doesn't pay. Sec. 6015 provides relief from that rule for an innocent spouse. But you must meet certain requirements.

In Sharon K. Hudgins (T.C. Memo. 2012-260) the taxpayer sought relief from the liabilities she incurred with her deceased husband. In considering the taxpayer's request for relief the IRS determined that (1) of the outstanding 2007 tax liability, $3,639 was attributable to the taxpayer and $17,058 was attributable to her spouse; (2) the taxpayer did not have a reasonable belief that her spouse would pay the tax because she did not review the return in the first instance and because the tax liabilities shown on the spouse's individual returns from 2001 and 2002 were also not timely paid and (3) the taxpayer was not making a good-faith effort to comply with the tax laws because she did not file her 2008 return, which had an extended due date of October 15, 2009, until October 20, 2009.

The Court reviewed the factors and concluded that the taxpayer failed to satisfy the safe harbor requirements and the equitable factors in Rev. Proc. 2003-61 and that she was not entitled to relief.

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