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kjs551
New Member

Married filing separate to nonresident alien

Hello,

 

My husband is an international student and already filed his taxes. He had to use the Form-1040NR which you can only itemize deductions but not the same deductions as the regular 1040. I understand if you are married filing separately you have to match your spouses by deductions. I assume this means I cannot take the standard deduction? Also if I itemize, the amounts will be different for both of us because of what is allowed to be deducted for residents vs nonresidents, so they won't match up anyways? 

3 Replies
Critter-3
Level 15

Married filing separate to nonresident alien

If he itemized then you must itemize even if you have nothing to itemize and you cannot use the same deductions. 

TomD8
Level 15

Married filing separate to nonresident alien

You have other options.

 

If you don't choose to treat your husband as a resident for tax purposes, you have the option of filing as Head of Household IF:

 

1.  You pay more than half of all the household expenses, AND

2.  Your home was the main home of your child, stepchild, or foster child for more than half the year, AND

3.  You claim the child as a dependent, AND

3.  Your dependent has a valid Social Security number.

https://www.irs.gov/publications/p501#en_US_2020_publink1000220775

 

Note that your spouse cannot be your dependent for this purpose.

 

If you qualify, filing as HOH is advantageous vs filing MFS.

 

You also have the option of filing MFJ if you choose to treat your husband as a resident.  This option is explained in this IRS reference:

https://www.irs.gov/individuals/international-taxpayers/nonresident-alien-spouse

 

Note however that filing MFJ will subject your NRA spouse's worldwide income to U.S. taxation.

**Answers are correct to the best of my ability but do not constitute tax or legal advice.
kjs551
New Member

Married filing separate to nonresident alien

Ok, thank you both, that was very helpful!

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