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Old 01-20-2011, 03:58 PM
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Red face Separated from husband since April 2010, should I file jointly or HOH.

My husband and I have been separated since April 2010. (divorce has been initiated but not final) We have one child together, whom lives with me. My husband makes roughly 35-40,00 a year and I make roughly 10,000. I get paid in cash to take care of an elderly woman who is disabled. My employer is family and says that she can give me a 1099. I also attend school and will be receiving a 1098-T form within the next few days. My husband is wanting to file our taxes jointly and split it down the middle. I believe his intentions are to use this money as child support. I am torn between filing with him and filing on my own as HOH (because I am considered single because we haven't lived together the last 6 months of 2010). I want to get the maximum amount possible but I know that I will have to pay self employment income as well. I just want advice on what you think is best and if the more you have income wise would the deductions be greater for us filing together or better if I was doing it on my own. I don't want to be sound selfish but this man has put us out of our home and took my car so I am looking to get as much as possible because I have been starting over.

Any help and advice would be greatly appreciated!! Thanks!!



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Old 01-21-2011, 05:02 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2010
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“My husband makes roughly 35-40,00 a year and I make roughly 10,000. My husband makes roughly 35-40,00 a year and I make roughly 10,000.”----> As you can see, you are subject to HOH filing status ( if you satisfy other conditions for HOH); as you said, the six month rule is for people who split up, not for people away temporarily. In this particular case, actually you do not need to file your tax return UNESS you claim your refund ( if you are subject to; if your quarterly estimated taxes> tax liability on your 1040 or you claim earned income tax credit, refundable child tax credit or etc.). Your spouse’ll be better off by filing return as MFJ, than MFS, And you are worse off; by filing your return as MFJ, you may not claim your earned income credit. For instance, if the AGI for MFJ exceeds $40,545 for one qualifying child for 2010, you can’t claim earned income credit; if you file as HOH, then even your AGI is $10,000, you can get over $3,300 of EIC. As filing your return as HOH, you can reduce your tax liability UNLESS your taxable income increases sharply. However, I guess as your taxable income is negative ( $10,000-$8,400-$3650*2=($5,700), so tax liability for 2010 as HOH filer is zero. If you file your return as MFJ with your spouse, then you will be worse off; as you pay tax liability. Assume that your spouse’s gross income is $40,000 and your gross income is $10,000, then your total gross income is $50,000 as MFJ, then your taxable income is $27,650; $50,000 ($5700*2+43,650*3)=$27,650 and the tax liability $3,314. The portion of your tax liability is $64. This means that you should pay $64(roughly) of tax liability as you file your return as MFJ. As your spouse files his return as MFS, then his taxable income is $30,650; $40,000-$5,700-$3,650=$30,650, his tax liability is $4,183. When filing his return as MFJ, his portion of the tax liability is $3,764. So your spouse can reduce his tax liability by $419; $4,183-$3,764. In the case of your spouse, filing his return as the Married Filing Separately , in general, provides fewer tax benefits than filing joint returns as shown above even though taxpayers need to weigh the pros and cons and decide for themselves which is the best filing status.
Please go to the table here; http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/i1040tt.pdf
“ I am torn between filing with him and filing on my own as HOH.”----> As said above, it is fundamentally up to your decision; however, filing your return as MFJ is not good choice for you.



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