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My wife filed joint taxes, got refund all without my permission or signatures. We are separated. Is this legal?

South Pasadena, CA |

We separated in Jan 2013. She filed Joint return without my knowledge. I did not sign anything. IRS states she did file joint and has already received the refund at her new address. What is my recourse if any? She now has my children. I was stay home dad since they were born, 3 and 5 years of age. I am trying to get my children back. Will this affect anything? Please help.

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Attorney answers 3


You can file a paper return filing married filing separately and include a letter to the IRS stating that you did not agree to submit a joint return. Office number: (860) 255-7423 Website: Our reply to your question has not created an attorney-client relationship. It should not be considered legal advice. You should contact an Attorney who can give you legal advice after acquainting themselves with the specifics of your case.


Only a family law attorney can advise if her actions will aid you in getting your children back. Deceit might mitigate in your favor.

As to the money issue (i.e. the refund) has there been any marital settlement agreement? In dividing property, you can ask for your share of the refund.


I doubt whether it would change the family court's ruling, unless she gets charged with tax fraud. But if the income info she reported was accurate, she won't get charged with tax fraud. Maybe she would have gotten the same refund whether or not you signed it or whether or not she claimed MFJ or MFS status. Did you file your own return? If not, maybe you should.

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