In the early 20th century, Dr. Duncan MacDougall attempted to quantify the mass lost when the soul departed the body upon death. This study has perpetuated the weight idiosyncratically known as “21 Grams.” Although this theory has largely been dismissed by later studies, the better question is: how much weight does your soul
April 17, 2012 is the 2011 tax filing deadline and it’s quickly approaching. The Government does not care that you are going through potentially the most difficult time period in your life. Like the Godfather, the IRS wants its money. It does not want to hear excuses. It does not want to hear that you always filed jointly and now your soon-to-be ex-spouse will not sign the joint return, or provide their W-2, or disclose the income of the closely held business because they fear it will be used against them in the divorce process.
Filing your taxes can be difficult, especially if you owe money. Trying to file when going through a divorce can be especially difficult. That is why it is important to work with your attorney and a tax professional. There are many decisions to make when filing taxes during a divorce. First, you have to determine your filing status: married filing jointly, married filing separately, or head of household. If you decide to file jointly, make sure to be extra diligent. If your spouse prepares the returns, have your own tax professional review them to ensure that they are accurate. The IRS does not care that your spouse prepared or filed the taxes. If you sign the return, you can be held liable for misreporting.
If you decide to file married filing separately or head of household (if you qualify), the following determinations have to be made (and in some instances negotiated):
1. Who gets the mortgage interest deduction(s) and other itemized deductions?
2. Who gets to claim the child(ren)?
3. Can I deduct the temporary support?
4. Can I deduct my legal expenses for the temporary support?
5. Who gets to claim the Child Tax credit and the Household and Dependent Care credit?
New changes implemented by the IRS to the "Innocent Spouse" rule provide greater protection for those spouses seeking relief under the broadly described "inequity" provision of the rule. Generally, speaking, most spouses file joint tax returns and do not consider a subsequent tax liability that may befall upon them. In the face of such a scenario, the…
As tax day is around the corner, Mark Ashton, a partner in our Exton, Pennsylvania office, and a contributor the firm’s Pennsylvania Family Law blog, wrote a timely post on that blog entitled "Tax Time."
In that article, Mark discusses tax deductions, tax credits and joint tax returns.
I have previously blogged about the issue…
As tax season is upon is, the issue of whether to file joint returns is upon us as well. i previously blogged about the topic of innocent spouse relief and the fact that the innocent spouse form that the IRS has published for those seeking innocent spouse status has many traps for the unwary.
More often than not, a matrimonial law attorney is not a C.P.A. More often than not during the process of a case, a client will ask the advice of their attorney, “How should I/we file tax returns this year?”
The answer is and should be first and foremost a reference to a C.P.A. A qualified C.P.A will be able to look at a divorcing couple’s entire financial picture, including their past and advise as to how to best file the final tax return in a way to minimize the taxes due.
What happens when one party does not want to file a joint return because of concerns regarding tax liabilities or even worse, penalties? The recent unpublished Appellate Division decision of Hreha-Coloccia v. Coloccia, A-3892-07T1, decided September 2, 2009, gives some guidance in this regard.
The process for seeking Innocent Spouse Relief, a provision for individuals concerned about the accuracy of tax returns filed by their current or former spouses, has become a potential minefield.
In June 2007, the IRS published a revised Form 8857 – Request for Innocent Spouse Relief. Prior to that time, the form was short and…