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New Member

filing separately

My 2020 turbo tax pulled the 2019 information over but I am filing alone as my husband does not live with me how do I use the program without his information.

2 Replies
Level 15

filing separately

If you are filing married filing separately then you should use a different account and user ID instead of using the same account that has been used in the past for joint returns.   That way you will not keep getting questions about your spouse's income etc. or errors when you try to file.   You will still have to put in his SSN when you enter his name as your spouse in My Info but when it asks if you want to file together with your spouse say NO.


Do you know the rules for filing separate returns?  You both have to file the same way.   If one spouse itemizes then the other spouse must itemize too.   Or you both have to use standard deduction.


If I am filing a separate return why do I have to list my spouse’s information on my return?

Even if you file separate returns (the worst way to file) you each have to list each other's SSN's and some other information on your own tax return.  The IRS can then cross check to make sure you are not "double dipping" for itemized deductions, dependents, etc.


If you are in a community property state, there is more information that will be needed.

Community property states:  AZ, CA, ID, LA, NV, NM, TX, WA, WI


If you were legally married at the end of 2020 your filing choices are married filing jointly or married filing separately.

Married Filing Jointly is usually better, even if one spouse had little or no income. When you file a joint return, you and your spouse will get the married filing jointly standard deduction of $24,800 (+$1300 for each spouse 65 or older)  You are eligible for more credits including education credits, earned income credit, child and dependent care credit, and a larger income limit to receive the child tax credit. 


If you choose to file married filing separately, both spouses have to file the same way—either you both itemize or you both use standard deduction. Your tax rate will be higher than on a joint return. Some of the special rules for filing separately include: you cannot get earned income credit, education credits, adoption credits, or deductions for student loan interest. A higher percent of your Social Security benefits may be taxable. Your limit for SALT (state and local taxes and sales tax) will be only $5000 per spouse. In many cases you will not be able to take the child and dependent care credit. The amount you can contribute to a retirement account will be affected. If you live in a community property state, you will be required to provide additional information regarding your spouse’s income. ( Community property states:  AZ, CA, ID, LA, NV, NM, TX, WA, WI)

 If  you are using online TurboTax to prepare your returns, you will need to prepare two separate returns and pay twice.



**Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to offer the most correct information possible. The poster disclaims any legal responsibility for the accuracy of the information that is contained in this post.**
New Member

filing separately

Thank you for the answers it has definitely helped me

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