Have a Tax Question? Ask a Tax Expert
Welcome and thank you for giving me the opportunity to assist you with your tax question.
First, please accept my deepest sympathy.
You may file your 2010, 2011 and 2012 tax returns using the married filing jointly filing status, but be sure to include the injured/innocent spouse form for each year. The IRS will take his portion of the refund (if any) and apply it to any outstanding tax debt, and you will receive your portion of the refund. If your ex passed away in 2012, you would list his date of death on the 2012 tax return. If he passed away in 2013, you would list his date of death on your 2013 tax return. You will not be responsible for his outstanding tax obligations.
Please let me know if you require further information or clarification on this. Thank you and best regards.
You can use the married filing jointly with your fiancé for the year you get married. If that year is 2013, and your ex is required to file a tax return for 2013, you would file his tax return as married filing separate.
If you do not have your W-2s, you can request a copy of your transcript from the IRS. How you can do this is as follows:
You may order a transcript online at IRS.gov, or by calling(NNN) NNN-NNNN You will receive your W-2 information within 5-10 business days.
Please let me know if you require additional information or clarification.
You can put "for bkb1956 or Barb" in the subject line of any questions you may have, and I will be happy to assist you.
Your fiancé will not be responsible for your ex's tax liability, but I would file those tax returns as soon as possible, especially since your tax returns need to be filed, too.
You are able to file married filing separate, but that is the least favorable filing status, especially when you have a child because you lose many of the credits that would be available to you. I would use the married filing jointly filing status and the injured spouse form with your returns for those years. You will have to mail in your tax returns, and the processing time is usually a bit longer with an innocent/injured spouse form, but it may be worth the wait for you to do so.
I hate to confuse the issue, but there is another aspect you may want to consider which a colleague mentioned. I did not address it in any of my previous answers because I got the impression that you were trying to find out the best way to file both your and your ex's taxes.
Since you stated you were separated from your ex for a long time and have a child, you could choose to file as Head of Household and not bother with your ex's tax returns at all.
Please let me know if you need any clarification on this.
You can file Head of Household for the 3 years even though you were not legally separated as long as you were not living together. You, individually, are not responsible for the taxes he owed prior to your marriage to him. You probably did not receive a refund when you filed jointly even though you used the injured spouse form because he had the majority/all of the income and there was basically no part of the refund to apportion to you.
Let me know if you need any other information on this.