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How do I switch from filing jointly to filing separately?

SOLVEDby TurboTax337Updated January 10, 2022

Note: Once you file a joint return, you cannot choose to file separate returns for that year after the due date of the return.

If you started a joint return, didn't file it yet, and want to switch the primary taxpayer listed on the return to Married Filing Separately, follow these instructions. If you already transferred info over from last year's joint return, it's best to start over with a brand new return that has nothing transferred over.

  1. Open or continue your return
  2. Select My Info in the left menu
  3. On the Personal info summary screen, select Edit next to Married Filing Jointly
  4. Answer No to Do you want to file this return together with your spouse?
  5. Select Continue and follow the instructions.
  6. Once you're back at the Personal info summary screen, go through your federal and state returns again, just to make sure everything looks OK and makes sense
  7. Have your spouse create a new return for themselves, if they're also filing this year

Don't use these instructions if you're just curious about how filing separately affects your return or if you need to amend a joint return that's already been filed.

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