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Married Filing Separately

Another tax filing status for a married person is married filing separately. Filing married filing separately on income tax can result in the person filing separately owing more taxes to the IRS. However, sometimes, there are good reasons to file married filing separately. Below are married filing separately IRS regulations and rules as well as tips on how to file married filing separately.

Why should I file married filing separately on income tax?

If you are married but want to be responsible for only your own tax or if filing married filing separately results somehow in paying less taxes to the IRS, then you should file married filing separately instead of married filing jointly.

Besides, if your spouse would not file married filing jointly with you then you have not choice but to file married filing separately. On your married filing separately return, you will report only your own:

  • income,
  • exemptions,
  • credits and
  • deductions.
Which is a better tax filing status married filing separately vs Head of Household?

Generally, Head of Household tax filing status will result in paying less taxes to the IRS. Instead of filing married filing separately, you may be qualified as 'unmarried' and can file as a Head of Household.

Married filing separately IRS regulations in a community property state

If you file a married filing separately tax return and you live in a community property state such as:

  • Arizona
  • California
  • Idaho
  • Louisiana
  • Nevada
  • New Mexico
  • Texas,
  • Washington
    Wisconsin

your income may be considered separate income or community income for tax purposes. See IRS tax publication 555 for IRS regulations for community property states.

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