Originally Posted by Steampunk1886
#1;I was divorced in 2013. My ex and I had old tax debt to both state (Kansas) and federal from many years ago. In the divorce settlement ordered by the court, the ex is responsible for state and I am responsible for federal. As it happens, I finished paying the federal, and am actually expecting a refund - since the ex is responsible for the state, can they still seize my federal refund?
#2;If yes, is there any way to make it stop since the court ordered that the ex is responsible for the debt now? If no, is there anything I should do to assure it does not happen? Thank you
#1; If your spouse owes back taxes, a joint tax return can take the tax refund that rightfully belongs to you and apply it to your spouse's debts UNLESS you filed your return as MFS; I mean if you and your spouse file separately, you each are responsible only for the tax due on your own return. If you live in a community property state and file a separate return, your income may be separate income or community income for income tax purposes. You may be an injured spouse if you file a joint tax return and all or part of your portion of a refund was, or is expected to be, applied to your spouse’s legally enforceable past due financial obligations. Joint filers share financial responsibility for back taxes. This shared responsibility continues even after divorce.So,aslongas you filed a joint return and you're not responsible for the debt, but you are entitled to a portion of the refund, you may request your portion of the refund by filing Form 8379, Injured Spouse Allocation. ALSO, to be considered an injured spouse; you must have paid federal income tax or claimed a refundable tax credit, such as the EICor ACTC on the joint return, and not be legally obligated to pay the past-due debt. In general, when you married your spouse, you inherited their tax issues. In these matters, the IRS saw fit to provide the Form 8379. This allows the married couple to file a joint return as it calculates the amount of the tax obligations and refunds on a separate basis, without having to file separate and losing the tax credits and deductions. This will allow the injured spouse, the one who isn't burdened with a debt that would be confiscated from the refund, to receive the portion of their refund they are entitled to. Likewise there are a couple of negative consequences to this option as well.
#2;As mentioned above; if the IRS has applied your refund against your ex-spouse's liability, or you're concerned that the IRS may do so, you need to btain Form 8379. The form requests identifying information for you and your spouse, and information needed to determine how much of the tax and refund is attributable to each spouse. The IRS makes the actual calculation that divides the refund between you and your spouse.
If you're an injured spouse for a return that's already been filed, you should file this form with the IRS Service Center for the place where you lived when you filed that return. If you're trying to prevent the IRS from seizing a refund on a return you haven't yet filed, you should attach Form 8379 when you file the return.