You cannot be held personally responsible for a tax debt that your husband had prior to your marriage, however, there are some things which could still affect you.
If you have assets such as a home that are listed in both of your names, a lien can be placed on those assets if he is listed as a joint owner. The same is true of any bank accounts you have. If you and he have a joint checking or savings account, the IRS can levy all of the money in that account, as long as he is listed as a joint owner.
If you plan to file a joint return with your husband, and you are expecting a refund, they would withhold the entire refund to be applied towards his tax debt. You have a couple of options here to at least still receive your portion of any refund which is due:
1. File separate returns.
2. File a joint return, but then you should also file Form 8379 for Injured Spouse. By doing so, the IRS would still refund any percentage of the refund which was applicable to your percentage of the income reported.
3. Try to adjust your withholding so that you are not due a refund at the end of the year.
So while they may take assets that are in both of your names, they cannot come after your personally or take any assets which are in your name only.
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