Married persons. If you are considered married for the whole year, you and your spouse can file a joint return, or you can file separate returns.
Considered married. You are considered married for the whole year if on the last day of your tax year you and your spouse meet any one of the following tests.
1. You are married and living together as husband and wife.
2. You are living together in a common law marriage that is recognized in the state where you now live or in the state where the common law marriage began.
3. You are married and living apart, but not legally separated under a decree of divorce or separate maintenance.
4. You are separated under an interlocutory (not final) decree of divorce. For purposes of filing a joint return, you are not considered divorced.
Disclaimer of California Attorney. Laws differ from state to state. Although the above response is believed to be accurate, it should not be relied upon as any type of legal advice because the information provided is incomplete. It is intended to educate the reader and a more definite answer should be based on a consultation with a lawyer. No attorney client relation is formed with me without a written contract. Good Luck starts with a strategy and a plan. Robert J. Suhajda, MS,CPA Attorney-At-Law 17721 Norwalk Blvd. #43 Artesia, CA 90701 562-924-8922 Tax Relief Lawyer. Former financial auditor and controller. Admitted to US Tax Court, Income Tax, IRS representation, Fiduciary income tax returns, Estate and Gift tax returns, Homeowner Association Strategist.
Before you figure out dependents, you need to figure out your filing status. Since you are not divorced and lived together more than 6 months of the year, you must file married jointly or married separately. If you file jointly, the issue of dependents is resolved as you will both get the benefit. You should speak with a tax professional who can help you figure out whether it is best to file jointly or separately.
THESE COMMENTS ARE NOT LEGAL ADVICE. They are provided for informational purposes only. Actual legal advice can only be provided after consultation by an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction. The answer to question does not create an attorney-client relationship or otherwise require further consultation. Mrs. Cook is licensed to practice law throughout the state of California with offices in San Diego County. She is authorized to handle IRS matters throughout the United States, and is also licensed to practice before the United States Tax Court. IRS CIRCULAR 230 DISCLOSURE: To ensure compliance with requirements imposed by the IRS, please be advised that any U.S. federal tax advice contained in this communication (including any attachments) is not intended or written to be used or relied upon, and cannot be used or relied upon, for the purpose of (i) avoiding penalties under the Internal Revenue Code, or (ii) promoting, marketing or recommending to another party any transaction or matter addressed herein.