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I am trying to figure out how to file my California income…

I am trying to figure...
I am trying to figure out how to file my California income taxes. The problem is, I got married in October, and my husband is the military. The Navy sent him to Virginia part-way through the year. I can't find any software that will let me file a 540NR long form and schedule CA 540NR and that will let me denote myself as a resident, but my husband as a part-year resident. I think it matters because I believe that half of his active duty military income from when he was sent to Virginia until the end of 2017 is taxable income in California, due to the fact that California is a community property state, and I stayed as a resident in California. So if the software forces me to have the same residency status as my husband, it treats me also as though I moved to Virginia when he did, which I did not, or it tries to assume he's a resident, which he is not. His domicile is here in California, but he is stationed there. I think I figured out how to file correctly, using the paper forms and schedule, but the problem there is that he is not here to sign, did not give me power of attorney (he didn't ever think to), and will be out to sea in a few hours, for two weeks. Even worse, he blacked out his SSN on his W-2s so he could email them to me, as he didn't have software to encrypt them (we were only married five days before he left and never shared an address, so all the W-2s were mailed to him). If I could find a software that would let me e-file correctly, he could sign "digitally" which wouldn't be a problem (he has some internet access on the ship but no other communication). Otherwise, I guess I just have to hope he blacked out the SSN only electronically on the scanned W-2s, and didn't mark up the hard copies, so I can email an encrypted return to him that he can print out, sign, attach the W-2s to, along with mine, and send off via the USPS to the FTB. I am trying to find out from my husband if the original hard copies of the W-2s are unmarked, but I don't know yet. This is the biggest problem I have. Is there any software that will let me do this correctly?To make matters even worse, I have to pay my use tax, and the 540NR won't allow it, since the FTB wrongly assumes the users are all nonresidents and don't have use tax. That's not necessarily true for part-year residents, or for the spouses of the part-year residents or nonresidents. But supposedly I can file a 401-E with the CDTFA as a hard copy, and they won't assess penalties and interest if I file by the deadline, although normally taxpayers are supposed to pay online after each purchase (too late) or as a lump sum on their income tax return. You're not normally supposed to pay in a lump sum after the end of the 2017 year, unless you do it with your income taxes. I hope the people I spoke with at the CFTFA are correct.
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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
I should have added, although you can probably tell, that we're trying to file jointly. We could file separately, and I think since my husband is in the military, we may even still be able to file the Federal return jointly. I'm pretty sure, though, that it will have an adverse effect on the amount owed. I'm also not sure if we did that, whether or not I report only half of his income for the little over two months from when we were married in late October, or do I have to report half of his income for the entire year?
Answered in 4 days by:
3/20/2018
Lane
Lane, JD, CFP, MBA, CRPS
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 14,666
Experience: Law Degree, specialization in Tax Law and Corporate Law, CFP and MBA, Providing Financial & Tax advice since 1986
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Hello, and welcome to JustAnswer. My name is ***** ***** I will be the one to assist you. Sorry to hear that you are having this trouble. I apologize for the extended wait time you experienced, I've only just come online now and would like to assist you with your question if you are still needing help that is?

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Hi. No, sorry, it's too late. Basically, JustAnswer sent me an email message, that while it didn't state I wasn't getting a response, led me to believe I wasn't going to get one. Then I was confused when I saw I'd been charged. Oh well. The message told me they'd been looking for someone to answer my questions, but couldn't find anyone, and offered me a coupon for a discount on a future question. I filed on my own, the best I could, since no tax preparer would help me without my husband there, or a POA in hand. So probably messed it up, and am too tired and exasperated to care about much of anything anymore. Thanks for trying to help.

OK, sorry, I just came on and saw this, and was just trying to helps, as no one else had picked the question. Then your response didn't come until after 2:00 in the morning my time.

...

But it sounds like almost everything you've said above is correct.

...

Yes, married filing separately almost never results in a better benefit. But no, it's your marital status on Dec 31 that determines marital status, and you would include all income for the year.

...
Sounds to me, if you did that, that you've gotten it done!

Lane
Lane, JD, CFP, MBA, CRPS
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 14,666
Experience: Law Degree, specialization in Tax Law and Corporate Law, CFP and MBA, Providing Financial & Tax advice since 1986
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