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If my husband owes back child support, can IRS take my tax return?

Saint Louis, MO |
Filed under: Tax law

My husband owes back child support arrears and it will be taken out of his tax return to pay his child's mother, however can they take mine as well? Is it better for me to file married jointly or married separately? I just want to make sure I get my own tax return and they do not take mine as well since I'm not the parent and responsible.

Attorney Answers 2


What would be best, would be to file jointly and request Injured Spouse Relief:

This will allow you to receive your portion of the joint refund. His will be taken. You can also file seperately, but you will both lose the opportunity to itemize, take the EIC, and other things. It is never a good way to file if you can avoid it, but they made it that way so people could not pick and choose income, deductions, and credits between spouses.

Christopher Larson
Insight Law

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You can file as married filing separately to protect your portion of the refund, or you can file jointly and make an injured spouse claim. If either way yields roughly the same result, choose to file separately.

Any individual seeking legal advice for their own situation should retain their own legal counsel as this response provides information that is general in nature and not specific to any person's unique situation. Circular 230 Disclaimer - Advice given in this response cannot be used to eliminate penalties with the IRS or any other governmental agency.

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