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datbomb
Level 1

How to complete my tax return with a spouse and child who do not have SSN?

I am a bit confused as to how I should be filing my taxes and need a bit of help. Online tax services like Tax Act and Turbo Tax require SSN for my Canadian spouse and child (which I do not have at the moment).

  • I am a US citizen born and raised
  • I have a Canadian spouse who is born and raised in Canada (currently going through process to get a green card)
  • We have a child (already have birth certificate and waiting on SSN in the next few months)
  • I am currently staying with my spouse and child in Canada as a visitor (I am not a legal resident. The only thing I have that allows me to stay here is a Canadian visitor visa)
  • I have been staying in Canada since early 2016
  • I still work remotely for a US based company
  • I still maintain a legal residence in the US
  • I have been claiming higher withholding allowance for both Fed and State

My questions are:

  1. Should I file married jointly, married separately, or single?
  2. If I should file separately now, should I file an amendment at some point down the road and file as jointly once I receive their SSN?
  3. Can I still file correctly even if they both don't yet have their SSN?
  4. Should I file an extension to give me time to receive their SSN and then file?

I'll be happy to clarify any questions.

3 Replies
DanielD
New Member

How to complete my tax return with a spouse and child who do not have SSN?

Please see the following information I have attached from a previous question similar to yours. You will have to mail in your return, and in the area of the return that ask for your son's and wife's social security number then you would physically write in "NRA" for (non resident alien.) Then just select to mail your return when you file, print the documents and mail them after you have entered that information and signed them to the address that prints on the instruction page.

datbomb
Level 1

How to complete my tax return with a spouse and child who do not have SSN?

Thank you for the info TurboTaxTSDanielD. Does this affect what I owe? Since I have been witholding a higher amount from my paycheck for 2016 I believe I will be owing the IRS money if I file married/separately or single . Will TurboTax still allow me file married/jointly even if I mail it in as you've suggested? Will it calculate the Fed/State values correctly?
DanielD
New Member

How to complete my tax return with a spouse and child who do not have SSN?

I am not able to accurately answer whether or not it will affect what you owe specifically or more/less. If you would like to speak to one of our tax support representatives about certain calculations then click on the Contact Us link within your TurboTax account to speak with someone that is a certified personal accountant that can legally answer that question. However, depending on what product you are using to file you may need to purchase PLUS benefits which gives you the feature to speak with a CPA as well as obtain your last year's tax transcripts. If you are filing with TurboTax Deluxe or higher then you would not have to purchase PLUS Benefits as those products come with those features.
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