Question

If we're married filing separately, do we need to add our incomes together on each return?

Answer

To fulfill the married filing separately requirements, you’ll each report your own income separately.

However, if you live in a community property state, you must report half of all community income and all of your separate income on your return. Community property states include:

  • Arizona
  • California
  • Idaho
  • Louisiana
  • Nevada
  • New Mexico
  • Texas
  • Washington
  • Wisconsin

Community property is property that you, your spouse, or both acquire:

  • During your marriage
  • While you and your spouse are living in a community property state

Separate property is property that you or your spouse:

  • Owned separately before your marriage
  • Earned while living in a non-community-property state
  • Received separately as a gift
  • Bought with separate funds
  • Acquired through separate funds

The laws of your state govern whether you have community or separate property and income.

You must attach Form 8958 to your tax form showing how you figured the amount you’re reporting on your return.

Related Topics

Related Resources

I am the sole owner of an LLC and I have a question regarding my LLC tax filing. I include my LLC income and expenses on

Do you need to file a separate tax return for your LLC? Learn more from the tax experts at H&R Block.

Form W-4 End of Year Updates | H&R Block

Tax season is right around the corner! Consider how the withholding allowances claimed on your Form W-4 could affect your income tax refund by visiting the Tax Information Center blog.

Since my husband is the only member of the family who’s employed, should he file as head of household?

Learn more about filing head of household from the tax experts at H&R Block.

First Time International Taxpayer | H&R Block

Get a better understanding of taxes for immigrants, expats and green card holders. This guide helps answer basic questions about special filing circumstances.