TurboTax FAQ
TurboTax FAQ
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Amending a Married Filing Separately Return to Married Filing Jointly (or vice-versa)

If you and your spouse originally filed separately and now wish to file jointly – or the other way around – you'll have to amend your return.

Going from Married Filing Separately to Married Filing Jointly

  1. Follow the directions for the tax year you wish to amend to begin the amendment process.
  2. Click the Personal Info tab and proceed to the Your Personal Info Summary screen.
  3. Scroll down to Your Filing Status and click the corresponding Edit button.
  4. Check the Change my filing status checkbox, choose Married filing jointly, and click Continue.
  5. Keep following any onscreen instructions until you return to the Your Personal Info Summary screen.
  6. Click the Edit button next to your spouse's name and enter any missing information (date of birth, occupation, etc.)
  7. Proceed through the TurboTax interview to add any items belonging to your spouse – for example, his or her W-2 and 1099 forms, medical deductions, and so forth.

When you get to the File section, follow the onscreen instructions to print and mail your amended return. Amended returns cannot be e-filed.

Going from Married Filing Jointly to Married Filing Separately

A little-known IRS rule, outlined in Publication 501, specifies that you cannot amend a joint return to a separate return after the April 15 filing deadline.

If you filed jointly and now wish to amend your return to file separately, you must do so before April 15. Here's how:

  1. Follow the directions to start amending your 2014 return.
  2. Click the Personal Info tab and proceed to the Your Personal Info Summary screen.
  3. Scroll down to Your Filing Status and click the corresponding Edit button.
  4. Check the Change my filing status checkbox, choose Married filing separately, and click Continue.
  5. Keep following any onscreen instructions until you return to the Your Personal Info Summary screen.
    • Although the secondary taxpayer (spouse) is now officially "off" the return, you'll still see their name on this screen for reporting purposes, per IRS rules.
  6. Proceed through the TurboTax interview and remove any items belonging to your spouse – for example, his or her W-2 and 1099 forms, medical deductions, and so forth.

When you get to the File section, follow the onscreen instructions to print and mail your amended return. Amended returns cannot be e-filed.

Although your spouse is not required to likewise file a married separate return, it's highly advisable to do so, provided s/he has a gross income of at least $3,950. If your spouse wishes to file their return using TurboTax, s/he should simply start a new return.

Related Information:


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