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Level 2

Registering in the Stimulus Portal as Married Filing Separate (ISSUES)

I am attempting to register my direct deposit info in the TurboTax Stimulus Portal for folks who don't normally need to file.  When you begin filling out the questions, it asks "were you married on Dec 31", I of course click yes and try to proceed as "Married Filing Separately", as that is how my wife has filed.  I am not normally required to file, and have not filed in 2018 or 2019.  The issue is:  This stimulus portal does not allow you to proceed as MFS.  It keeps giving an error message that you need to go back and change your filing status.  I called TurboTax, and a rep walked through it with me.....they explained that even though I am married, I need to file the submission as "SINGLE".  Once you I enter my filing status this way, the portal works...and I can proceed to the final page.  I guess my concern/question is:  When I get to that final page, it shows a PDF of a 1040 that is being sent to the IRS.  That 1040 shows me as filing as SINGLE instead of MFS.  Obviously, I am concerned about sending a 1040 to the IRS that shows me as SINGLE instead of Married.....can anyone explain to me why this portal is doing this?  And am I really supposed to submit this in this manner?  Difficult to find answers that clarify....but I have been told multiple times by TurboTax to file as "Single" even though I am married.....(looking for professional and qualified replies only)

4 Replies
Level 15

Registering in the Stimulus Portal as Married Filing Separate (ISSUES)

Here is how the CARES ACT reads:




IN GENERAL.—In the case of an eligible individual, there shall be allowed as a credit against the tax
imposed by subtitle A for the first taxable year beginning in 2020 an amount equal to the sum of—
‘‘(1) $1,200 ($2,400 in the case of eligible individuals filing a joint return)

‘‘(2) an amount equal to the product of $500 multiplied by the number of qualifying children
(within the meaning of section 24(c)) of the taxpayer.


it states that an "individual" receives the $1200 - so whether you file 'single' or 'married-separate', you are still an 'individual'  -  TT could have better set up the verbiage to ask whether you filed 'individually' (which would include 'single' or 'married-separate')  or 'joint' - because those are the only two categories that matter.  

Level 2

Registering in the Stimulus Portal as Married Filing Separate (ISSUES)

@NCpersonThanks.  I suppose what hangs me up is the 1040 that is being sent to both the IRS and My State, showing me as filing as "SINGLE", rather than MFS.  When the IRS or State receive that.....I am not going to receive a letter or need to amend something at a later time?  I know that if I had filed a simple tax return on my own via 1040, and made the "error" of filing as single when my wife filed as MFS......that would definitely raise flags with the IRS and need to be resolved.....

Level 15

Registering in the Stimulus Portal as Married Filing Separate (ISSUES)

I appreciate why you are asking the questions, but I can not answer you.   You can see where the confusion lies.... the TT website doesn't permit 'MFS' but the law didn't specifically call out "MFS", but it did call out 'individual'.  You are an individual whether you file "Single" or "MFS" 


Level 3

Registering in the Stimulus Portal as Married Filing Separate (ISSUES)

Did you ever get this figured out? I was told the same thing and submitted it as single, and it was rejected because my spouse had already filed as married filing separately. I have read elsewhere if I file as married filing jointly, it get rejected that way, too.

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