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ron5
New Member

Form 8379 question regarding lines 16 and 17

I earned 100% of the income reported on the MFJ return. Spouses defaulted student loans resulted in the tax offset. We have 3 children together, 2 are biologically mine and 1 is my stepchild.


2 questions. First, it is my understanding that when completing Part III, line 16, I am able to list 5 under the "allocated to injured spouse" section (b)(myself, spouse and 3 children)  and have 0 for the "allocated to other spouse" as the "other spouse" did not have any income to report at all. Is this accurate?

Second, line 17, we had a child tax credit of $2450 on the joint return. Can I simply place that entire amount under "allocated to injured spouse" section (b) and place 0 under "allocated to other spouse" section (c)? Or it will it even matter since I have read that the IRS will calculate the % contribution from child care tax credits, based off a simple calculation that each of us filed a MFS return? On this point, I guess I am confused as to where I should place the $2450 to result in the greatest potential benefit, with regards to the IRS returning the largest portion of the tax offset.  Thanks,

1 Best answer

Accepted Solutions
DianeW
Expert Alumni

Form 8379 question regarding lines 16 and 17

The answers to your question are shown below and assumes that you do not live where community property rules would apply to you.

  • Question 1: You should allocate your spouse's exemption under the spouse.  All other exemptions can be listed under you. 
  • Question 2: You can allocate all of the child tax credit to you because without your income there would be no credit.

Below are the basics for completing the injured spouse form (8379).  If you have not E-filed your return yet, you should include this with your return for the fastest processing.  

If necessary you can mail it because it is a "stand-alone" signature form.  If it is sent via the mail, include a copy of the W2 and any other document that has federal withholding.

https://ttlc.intuit.com/replies/6528459

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8 Replies
DianeW
Expert Alumni

Form 8379 question regarding lines 16 and 17

The answers to your question are shown below and assumes that you do not live where community property rules would apply to you.

  • Question 1: You should allocate your spouse's exemption under the spouse.  All other exemptions can be listed under you. 
  • Question 2: You can allocate all of the child tax credit to you because without your income there would be no credit.

Below are the basics for completing the injured spouse form (8379).  If you have not E-filed your return yet, you should include this with your return for the fastest processing.  

If necessary you can mail it because it is a "stand-alone" signature form.  If it is sent via the mail, include a copy of the W2 and any other document that has federal withholding.

https://ttlc.intuit.com/replies/6528459

ron5
New Member

Form 8379 question regarding lines 16 and 17

Thank you VERY much for your detailed response. Please, a follow up question and observation if I may? In #2 of the "Reminders and Tips", my reading of this tells me that since I am the injured spouse, and since I am the only one with any income, all of the refund should be released by the IRS after review of the 8379, is that accurate? So essentially the spouses exemption being placed under the spouse does not serve to lower the portion of potentially releasable refund? That being said, what is the purpose of notating the 8379 in this manner? Sorry for the confusion and many thanks for your help,
DianeW
Expert Alumni

Form 8379 question regarding lines 16 and 17

@ron You are correct, if you are not in community property state all of the refund should be released since your spouse had no income on the tax return.  The exemption issue is that a spouse is never a dependent of another spouse so one exemption should be left under each spouse for their own.  That being said it never hurts to try it, but in you case it shouldn't make any difference.  
You're welcome!
ron5
New Member

Form 8379 question regarding lines 16 and 17

Thank You!!!!
DianeW
Expert Alumni

Form 8379 question regarding lines 16 and 17

@ron You're welcome!
ron5
New Member

Form 8379 question regarding lines 16 and 17

Just when I thought I would not have anymore questions, I get to lines 19 and 20... I paid ~16k in federal income tax via withholdings... Since I am the injured spouse and I made 100% of the income, would I place the ~16k in both (a) and (b) of both of lines 19 and 20, and place 0 in (c) of both lines 19 and 20? Thanks again....
ron5
New Member

Form 8379 question regarding lines 16 and 17

I think I figured it out using the instructions, provided by the IRS, for Form 8379. As per the instructions, for line 20,

"These are on the lines of your return where you entered estimated tax payments, the amount applied
from your previous year's tax return, and amounts you paid with an extension to file (Form 2350 or
Form 4868)."

I'm fairly certain that line 64 of the 1040 is what is entered for 19 for (a) and (b), and line 65 from the 1040 is what would be entered for line 20. As my entire Payments section of my MFJ return was just line 64 of the ~16k, I would have 0 for (a), (b) and (c) of line 20...

Hopefully that is accurate...
DianeW
Expert Alumni

Form 8379 question regarding lines 16 and 17

@ron It looks like you got it covered and you have the correct understanding.
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