What you claim on your W-4 does not lock you in to what you can claim at actual tax filing time. It is only an estimate for withholding purposes. In your situation, it is totally optional how you split up the kids on your tax returns. You can do it anyway you want. Only if you can't agree, are there rules establishing priorities.
But the bigger question is: why are you filing separately? That usually (almost always) the worst way to file.
MFJ vs MFS
If you choose married filing separately as your filing status, the following special rules apply. Because of these special rules, you will usually pay more tax on a separate return than if you used another filing status that you qualify for. 1. Your tax rate generally will be higher than it would be on a joint return. 2. Your exemption amount for figuring the alternative minimum tax will be half that allowed to a joint return filer. 3. You cannot take the credit for child and dependent care expenses in most cases, and the amount that you can exclude from income under an employer's dependent care assistance program is limited to $2,500 (instead of $5,000 if you filed a joint return). For more information about these expenses, the credit, and the exclusion see Pub 17, Chapter 32. 4. You cannot take the earned income credit. 5. You cannot take the exclusion or credit for adoption expenses in most cases. 6. You cannot take the education credits (the American Opportunity credit and the lifetime learning credit), the deduction for student loan interest, or the tuition and fees deduction. 7. You cannot exclude any interest income from qualified U.S. savings bonds that you used for higher education expenses. 8. If you lived with your spouse at any time during the tax year: a. You cannot claim the credit for the elderly or the disabled, b. You will have to include in income more (up to 85%) of any social security or equivalent railroad retirement benefits you received, and c. You cannot convert amounts from a traditional IRA into a Roth IRA. 9. The following deductions and credits are reduced at income levels that are half those for a joint return: a. The child tax credit, b. The retirement savings contributions credit, c. Itemized deductions, and d. The deduction for personal exemptions. 10. Your capital loss deduction limit is $1,500 (instead of $3,000 if you filed a joint return). 11. If your spouse itemizes deductions, you cannot claim the standard deduction. If you can claim the standard deduction, your basic standard deduction is half the amount allowed on a joint return. You may not be able to deduct all or part of your contributions to a traditional IRA if you or your spouse were covered by an employee retirement plan at work during the year. Your deduction is reduced or eliminated if your income is more than a certain amount. This amount is much lower for married individuals who file separately and lived together at any time during the year. If you actively participated in a passive rental real estate activity that produced a loss, you generally can deduct the loss from your non-passive income, up to $25,000. This is called a special allowance. However, married persons filing separate returns who lived together at any time during the year cannot claim this special allowance. Married persons filing separate returns who lived apart at all times during the year are each allowed a $12,500 maximum special allowance for losses from passive real estate activities. If you live in Arizona, California, Idaho, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Washington or Wisconsin and file separately, your income may be considered separate income or community income for income tax purposes. See Pub 555 Community Property - http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p555.pdf
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I looked into this a little bit further, and actually you don't have to do so much just to uninstall the unneeded states; the state modules have their own standalone Windows installers! (which includes built-in support for the uninstall operation) What happened to me is that I had briefly selected NM instead of NY somewhere on the return by accident. Once TurboTax saw that, it flagged the NM state module in the Windows registry to be later downloaded and installed. The flag apparently doesn't get cleared even if you later remove the reference to the state before the install actually happens. So I never had any need for NM and really didn't want to see it hanging around on my computer forever ... It turns out, at least as of TurboTax 2019 desktop, that the installers for the state modules are downloaded and stored under the hidden directory tree at C:\ProgramData\Intuit\Common\Update Service\v4\Data . They have names like, for example, wctiper.msi for CT Personal Income tax or wnmiper.msi for NM Personal Income Tax. Once you find the installer for the state module that you want to delete, you can easily invoke the uninstall operation using "Run Command" or in "Command Prompt" like this: MsiExec /x "\path\to\w??iper.msi" . That will prompt you to confirm that you want to uninstall the state module, then in a second it'll be gone. You can also then delete the installer itself and the subdirectory it's in if you want as well (may not be necessary though). Now, there also is the issue that TurboTax will re-download and re-install the removed state if it remains flagged by TurboTax in the Windows registry. TurboTax seems to maintain a separate set of these flag on a per tax year basis, which means that the flagging shouldn't be carrying over to subsequent years if you no longer needed them on the new return. However, you can check and delete them if necessary out of the registry with REGEDIT.EXE. For TurboTax 2019, here: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Intuit\TY19\PREFILLPERSTATES I assume that for TurboTax 2020 those state flags will be in TY20 directory path instead. Under each key you'll find a separate name-value pair for each state, just delete the one relating to the state that you don't want re-installed. As long as there is no reference to that state in your return, the flag won't be re-written into the registry and the state module will stay uninstalled!
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It was answered in that I did it and saw what happened. To recap - The amended return does not void the originally filed return or serve as a subsequent joint return filing. What it does is cause an IRS adjustment to the original return. For the non-filing spouse, the original separate return becomes the originally filed separate return for both spouses! That may not be what you want, particularly if you have to later produce a tax return transcript to verify your income; for the non-filing spouse, the tax transcript will show the filing spouse's income only. While an account transcript will cryptically show adjustments in tax and filing status, the details of where those adjustments came from (the Form 1040-x) are not maintained by IRS.
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Duplicate post. See my answer in your other post: https://ttlc.intuit.com/community/tax-credits-deductions/discussion/re-is-the-cares-act-advance-credit-payment-a-nonrefundable-credit/01/1378770#M143413
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I'm certainly not seeing this happen for me, now even in October! Because the Union Dues is not even a standard entry field in the online TurboTax, rather it is an add-on "Other Job Expenses" that you type in, there's no way for the NY return to know this is eligible expense for the NY addition adjustment to the itemized deductions. There are only 4 obscure categories allowed, union dues undoubtedly being the most common!
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I'm using TurboTax FreeFile Online Edition, and I really can't find a way to do this! There is no 'Forms' view in this edition. There is a section on the Federal itemized deductions for Job-Related expenses, but Union Dues is not specifically listed and instead must be entered into a free-form textbox on the last screen for "Other Job-Related Expenses." I'm aware the 2018 federal tax law changes eliminated the Union Dues miscellaneous itemized deduction (which was also subject to the 2% AGI limit). But New York not only did not adopt the federal tax law changes, not only now allows you itemize deductions on the state return even if you didn't, but it also added an itemized deduction "Addition Adjustment" on Form IT-196 Line 44 to get a deduction on the 2% AGI floor disallowed amount on 4 special categories of miscellaneous itemized deduction (which includes Union Dues)! However, it seems TurboTax FreeFile edition has no way to access this form to enter the amount. Maybe I'm missing something? It seems TurboTax didn't make provisions for this special handling by NY.
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Yes, but it's not that I have to e-file the federal return. It's that I don't want to and choose not to, even though it has been prepared by tax software and could be e-filed. Is that alone sufficient grounds to opt out of the NY e-file mandate?
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