turbotax icon
cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 
Close icon
Do you have a TurboTax Online account?

We'll help you get started or pick up where you left off.

joshmac87
New Member

Live in Texas and have common law (informal marriage) without a declaration. We meet all the requirements. We are planning on filing a joint return.

If we decide to have a formal marriage ceremony in the future, will we have to ammend our previous tax returns?
2 Replies
Carl
Level 15

Live in Texas and have common law (informal marriage) without a declaration. We meet all the requirements. We are planning on filing a joint return.

If you meet the requirements as outlined at http://statelaws.findlaw.com/texas-law/common-law-marriage-in-texas.html then it's no problem to file MFJ. Just understand that by doing this, if you should separate in the future it will require a legal divorce proceeding in order to change your filing status from MFJ or MFS, to Single.

Live in Texas and have common law (informal marriage) without a declaration. We meet all the requirements. We are planning on filing a joint return.

For common law marriage in Texas, you have to 

1. agree to be married

2. act privately as if you are married

3. tell people publicly you are married. 

You are married from whenever those things happen.  Filing a joint tax return for 2016 would certainly meet all three tests, since you have to agree to file jointly, and it is both a private and public declaration of your marriage.  Having a formal marriage ceremony won't change that.  And you would not go back and amend past returns (2015, 2014 etc) unless you believe you were married (meet all those tests) as of December 31, 2015 or December 31, 2014 etc.

Manage cookies