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Category: Tax
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Experience:  over 40 years experience in tax matters
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Can the state take my tax refund for a non-insurance penalty

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Can the state take my tax refund for a non-insurance penalty on a car that is soley in my husband's name? I was on the insurance before it lapsed. Or can I file an injured spouse form. If I do file the form, How do they determine how much my portion is? Do they spit it down the middle or base it on income (he earns much more).
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Tax
Expert:  CGCPA replied 5 years ago.

Welcome to Just Answer. I am here to help you resolve your tax and finance concerns. Please feel free to ask anytime you need extra help.


Government agencies can seize tax refunds to pay obligations to them. I assume you filed a joint return, otherwise the obligation will not be connected to you. You can file for innocent spouse relief. If you do this and it is granted (key word is if) the state will recalculate your return apportioning the tax due from you and due from your spouse on a percentage basis. The portion applicable to you, when subtracted from you tax payments into the system and tax credits allowable for you, will be your refund.


If you need additional assistance, please feel free to ask.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
How likely is the state to grant the innocent spouse relief? Is it something that is a pretty regular occurrence?

And yes, we did file separately. The money he owes was to pay for the mandatory state insurance since the car he owned had none at the time of an accident.
Expert:  CGCPA replied 5 years ago.
If you filed separately and the vehicle was solely in your spouse's name they will not attach your refund. If, for some reason, they do the innocent spouse relief is a 60-40 likelihood in your favor.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Oops, I meant we filed jointly. I'm sorry. does that change anything?
Expert:  CGCPA replied 5 years ago.
Yes, it does. The refund applicable to you, when filing a joint return, can be seized for the obligations of either of you to a government agency. If that happens you will need to consider filing for innocent spouse relief. Your option is, of course, to do nothing and let his debt be reduced.
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