Hi all -
I received an inquiry from a guy who (along with his wife) are behind
in paying taxes, both with taxes owed. They want to file a joint
return and make a payment toward their arrearages, but want to allocate
the payment (unequally) between the two.
Can that be done? Do they need to file separate returns?
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I don't see why the payment of prior year tax liabilities
would affect their filing status of subsequent year returns
unless you are talking about designating a refund offset.
If that's the issue, see IRM 184.108.40.206
(https://www.irs.gov/irm/part21/irm_21-004-006r ) for
priorities for offset. Generally, application of refund
offsets can't be designated, though there may be some
injured spouse relief available.
Designation of voluntary payments should not be a problem
unless they are contractually obligated (installment
agreement, offer in compromise, etc.) to make payments in a
certain manner. See Rev. Proc. 2002-26 in IRB 2002-15
From a procedural standpoint based on many years'
experience locating misapplied payments, separate checks and
designations from each taxpayer is preferable to splitting
payments from one check.
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Thanks. I'll look into it.
The spouses each owe different amounts, and each wants to apply a
payment to his/her own specific debt. And right, I don't know why
they think this affects their current return.
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