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Innocent Spouse Relief – A Statutory Safe Haven From Tax Collection

In 1789, Benjamin Franklin famously stated that the only things in life that certain Innocent Spouse Relief “death and taxes”. Irrespective if one has obtained a divorce, thinking about a divorce, wishes to stay with one’s partner, or dealing with post-divorce issues, having to file and sometimes pay taxes something that everyone must deal with on a yearly basis.

Even though this certainty fundamentally simple, in 2019, the Franchise Tax Board, or the Internal Revenue Service. For many people, these issues can ongoing for a number of years until either the Franchise Tax Board or the Internal Revenue Service send a notice regarding such returns.

A Statutory Safe Haven From Tax Collection

Even worse in cases where fraudulent returns submitted. which may lead to further consequences. including bank levies. garnishments or liens by either of the taxing agencies. action or learning things through the discovery process in a dissolution action.

the other party usually dismayed to learn that. they now responsible for liabilities that. they had no knowledge of that have accrued interest or penalties.

The Internal Revenue Code

Fortunately, there remedies for these determinations that are better than death, which known as “Innocent Spouse Relief”. Under Section 6015 of the Internal Revenue Code. these provisions vary from specific joint and several liability relief. and fair relief, which known as 6015(f) relief. In its legislative history.

Congress intended for the Internal Revenue Service to exercise fair relief authority. under 6015(f) when a spouse. “does not know and had no reason to know that funds intended for the payment of the tax were instead taken. by the other spouse for the other spouse’s benefit”.H.R. Conference Report No. 599, 105thCong. 2d. Sess. 254 (1998). These provisions of the Internal Revenue Code also mirrored in California State law.

General The Internal Revenue Service

While each innocent spouse case fact-specific and requires specific application. of the existing statutory law and case law to the facts in general the Internal Revenue. Service has provided a partial list of circumstances. for which innocent spouse relief will granted. These circumstances take into account the following:

a) Marital Status, meaning that usually, the individual requesting relief. must separated or divorced from the non-requesting spouse.

b) Economic Hardship, which usually easy for the requesting party to meet in that if relief not granted. the applicant would suffer financial hardship. criminal acts of abuse which amounted to duress, meaning that. they could not examine the returns at issue, or forced to take actions based on the conduct of the non-filing spouse. As well the Internal Revenue Service and the Franchise Tax Board, while taxes are certain legal relief.

As one can see, while taxes are certain legal relief from such certainty more complicated. Innocent spouse relief a complex area which requires straightforward analysis and presentation of facts to the law. It also important to realize that this legal doctrine applies. whether one a man. or whether one a woman.

If you feel that you are involved in a situation where you should not held liable for taxes acquired during a marriage, you should contact our office today with any questions you have relating to this relief and whether it applies to you.

For more information on dealing with taxes and other legal matters related to divorce, consider reading our article on Innocent Spouse Relief, exploring our Divorce Law and Legal Separation services, and learning about the benefits of hiring a California Certified Family Law Specialist.