Form 8857: Request For Innocent Spouse Relief

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DEFINITION of 'Form 8857: Request For Innocent Spouse Relief'

An IRS tax form used by taxpayers to request relief from a tax liability involving a spouse or former spouse. Couples filing a joint tax return both become responsible for the tax obligation, called joint and several liability. If additional tax has to be paid because of income, deductions or credits from one spouse (or former spouse), the other partner will still be liable. The taxpayer seeking relief should file Form 8857 as soon as he or she becomes aware of a tax obligation that the other spouse (or former spouse) should be solely responsible for.

BREAKING DOWN 'Form 8857: Request For Innocent Spouse Relief'

Getting a divorce doesn't stop the IRS from considering both parties still joint and severally liable for a tax obligation, even if a divorce decree states that only one party is responsible for the tax. A spouse or former spouse has two years to file Form 8857 from when the IRS first starts trying to collect for the obligation.

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RELATED FAQS
  1. What are Social Security spousal benefits?

    Social Security spousal benefits are partial retirement or disability benefits granted to the spouses of qualifying taxpayers.  Qualifying ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. How are Social Security benefits calculated for divorced spouse?

    The maximum Social Security retirement benefit payable to a divorced spouse is 50% of the amount that would be paid to the ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. How does divorce affect Social Security benefits?

    If you are eligible to receive Social Security retirement benefits on your own account, your marital status has no impact ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. Can a divorced woman collect Social Security from her ex-husband?

    While a number of conditions must be met, a divorced woman is able to collect Social Security benefits through her ex-husband. ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. Are Social Security benefits affected by marriage?

    The amount of Social Security benefit you are eligible to collect upon retirement is not affected by marriage. Your benefit ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. How do alimony and child support factor into my taxable income?

    The Internal Revenue Service, or IRS, applies a different tax treatment to alimony than child support. Most forms of alimony ... Read Full Answer >>

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