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Returning Member

Filing status

My filing status at my job is currently listed as “married filing separate/single” if I decide to file married filing jointly, will it affect my taxes during tax season. Also, if my husband is on a payment plan and we file together, will they offset my taxes even if we filed together?

3 Replies

Filing status

If your spouse owes back taxes, then your refund can be seized to offset his debt.   One option for you is to file injured spouse to protect the part of the refund that is based on your earnings.  Or you can file married filing separately.  Both are trickier if you are in a community property state.





If you were legally married at the end of 2021 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 $25,100 (+$1350 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.**
Returning Member

Filing status

Is there an income guideline to see if we will get the EIC since we both make over $50K? In theory, if we file separately, neither one of us will qualify for the EIC child tax credit?

Filing status

When you file married filing separately you are not eligible to get EIC.   


The tax laws for EIC changed for 2021 and will change again for 2022 returns, but if you are a married couple making over $100,000 between you, you are not going to qualify for earned income credit.


The "child tax credit" is a different credit--not to be confused with earned income credit.





This information is for tax year 2021---for tax year 2022 the child tax credit reverts to $2000 per child under the age of 17.


**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.**
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