If my spouse files separately and itemizes, can I file using the standard deduction?
Even though you and your spouse are choosing to file your taxes as married, filing separately you both need to itemize your tax deductions. If your spouse itemizes, your standard deduction will be zero. Therefore, you should also itemize your deductions. In itemizing your tax returns, you and your spouse will need to determine the following:
The spouse who paid an expense that results in a tax deduction should claim the full deduction.
If you and your spouse paid the expense from a joint account you will need to divide the deduction according to your interest in the account. In community property states, expenses paid with community property (a joint checking account) should be divided in half.
When married couples choose to file tax returns as married filing separately they report their own earned income and expenses on individual tax returns. In doing so, the married couple must agree how to best divide itemized expenses or choose to use the standard deduction to reduce their tax. The standard deduction is an amount that reduces the taxable income and eliminates the need to itemize tax deductions. Calculate both methods to decide which is beneficial to you.
Learn how to deduct student loan interest with H&R Block. Get information about qualified education expenses and see if a student loan tax deduction applies to you.
What’s the difference between an enrolled agent (EA) vs. a certified public accountant (CPA)? Explore the roles of EAs and CPAs at H&R Block.
Changing jobs can come with tax implications like job search and moving expense deductions. Learn more about these potential benefits at H&R Block.
Tax preparers can have various designation and specialties. Learn how different types of tax preparers at H&R Block can help you in person or virtually.