Innocent Spouse Relief: What It Is And How To Qualify

Innocent Spouse Relief is a form of tax relief available to married taxpayers who have filed a joint tax return with their spouse. It relieves an individual from being held liable for any tax debt incurred due to an error or omission made by their spouse on the joint return. This blog will explore the basics of Innocent Spouse Relief.

What is Innocent Spouse Relief? 

Innocent Spouse Relief is a form of relief that can be requested by taxpayers who file joint tax returns and are facing a tax liability resulting from the actions of their spouse. This relief can protect taxpayers who did not know or were not responsible for their spouses’ underreporting or underpayment of taxes. Without Innocent Spouse Relief, a taxpayer may be held liable for the entire amount of taxes due, even if only one spouse was responsible for not paying the taxes. 

When requesting Innocent Spouse Relief, taxpayers must provide the IRS with information about the tax liability, such as the amount of taxes due and the year in which the taxes were due. In addition, taxpayers must provide information about the marital relationship between them and their spouses, such as the date of marriage, date of separation, and any agreements made between the spouses regarding the filing of taxes. The IRS will then review the information provided and determine if the taxpayer qualifies for relief.

How to Qualify for Innocent Spouse Relief 

To qualify for innocent spouse relief, the filing spouse must meet certain criteria. First, the filing spouse must have filed a joint return with their spouse. Second, the filing spouse must prove that their spouse is solely responsible for the underpayment of taxes. Third, the filing spouse must provide proof that they were unaware of the underpayment of taxes during the filing process. Finally, the filing spouse must prove that it is not fair to hold them liable for the taxes of their former spouse. 

The filing spouse must also take certain steps to receive innocent spouse relief. First, they must file Form 8857, Request for Innocent Spouse Relief, with the IRS. This form must be completed and submitted with the required supporting documentation. The IRS will review the form and supporting documentation to determine if the filing spouse qualifies for innocent spouse relief. 

Advantages of Innocent Spouse Relief 

Innocent spouse relief can provide several advantages to a filing spouse. It can protect the filing spouse from the liabilities of their former spouse’s unpaid taxes, including penalties and interest. Knowing that the filing spouse is not responsible for underpaying taxes can provide peace of mind. Finally, it can save the filing spouse time and money, as they do not have to pay any unpaid taxes. 

Innocent Spouse Relief can provide much-needed financial relief for those affected by a former spouse’s unpaid taxes. Qualifying for Innocent Spouse Relief can be difficult, so it’s important to understand the qualifications and the process to ensure you get the relief you need. If you believe you may qualify for Innocent Spouse Relief, it’s important to book a tax consultation service to help you navigate the process and ensure you get the best outcome.

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