Picture of a Swan on a Lake
State Bar of California
United States Tax Court
United States District Court
Expertise - Best Bankruptcy Lawyers in Chula Vista
Expertise - Best Bankruptcy Lawyers in San Diego

Innocent Spouse

‘Innocent Spouses’ Get Tax Relief

Divorced or legally separated people facing IRS difficulties because their spouses failed to pay taxes should have an easier time getting relief under guidelines recently announced.

The rules, which arose from the IRS reform law Congress passed last summer, are aimed at preventing people from suffering if their former partner made a mistake, cheated on taxes, or simply refused to pay Uncle Sam.

"This is an important step that provides new avenues of relief in extraordinary situations to married or formerly married taxpayers," said Deputy Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers.

Development of the interim rules will permit the Internal Revenue Service to decide a backlog of 2,000 requests for "innocent spouse" relief that were pending before the reform law passed Congress in July. The rules will be used in all other such cases until final guidelines are adopted next year.

Under the tax code, married people filing joint income tax returns are each liable for taxes owed and assessments arising from an audit, interest, and penalties. Existing law provided for some relief for innocent spouses, but qualifying was fairly strict.

The new law provides outright relief for spouses who can establish that they didn’t know taxes were not being paid and for situations in which an additional tax is clearly the other spouse’s responsibility.

The IRS has also issued guidelines for a new "equitable relief" category for people who don’t qualify for the other types of relief, but could still suffer -- even if they knew their spouse wasn’t paying taxes.

The IRS will weigh other factors in deciding such a relief request, including a showing that paying the tax would cause "undue hardship" financially, that the taxpayer suffered abuse at a spouse’s hands, or that the non-paying spouse had a legal obligation -- such as a divorce decree -- to eventually pay the tax.

Find out right now, without cost to you, whether or not you qualify for innocent spouse or equitable relief. Call for a Free Consultation!

"The taxpayers affected have been among the nation’s most vulnerable and will benefit significantly from the enhanced relief," IRS Commissioner Charles Rossotti said.

GO TO: Request Free Special Report

Client Reviews
David has been my attorney for several years and has helped me walk through major life changing situations with compassion and understanding and good legal and personal advice. My IRS debt is about a thing of the past and my state tax is now handled as well. I can recommend Dave for his tax and legal expertise. Tobin
When I contacted David Greenberg, I owed the IRS over $150,000 and he was able to help me have those payments discharged. I am forever thankful. David is always there for me when I call and I have referred him to friends who have also hired him with excellent results. I can't say enough wonderful things about Mr. Greenberg and his staff. John
He is a super big help with tax problems. He is very informative, knows exactly what to do & when. He is also sympathetic & understanding; knows what to say to calm all fears & worries. Furthermore, he works his hardest to ensure comfortable payment plans or alternative discount methods to ease any financial obligations. He is a great asset to those in need of tax resolutions. Debbie
What can I say about David other than he is a genius and knows his tax law. In 2009 I was hit extremely hard by the financial meltdown. I contacted David to help my wife and I through a personal bankruptcy and a 6 digit IRS Tax Lien. He was wonderful to work with and walked us through the whole process. The biggest hurdle was the IRS Tax debt. What an amazing job David performed. It took some time, as he said it would. The IRS agreed to an Offer and Conpromise and forgave 97% of the debt. I would highly recommend David Greenberg for any Tax or Bankruptcy issues. He is amazing. Fred
Attorney David Greenberg, assisted me with a tax issue and kept the IRS from just randomly taking money while resolving the issue. He is polite,attentive and willing to help his clients. I wholeheartedly recommend David Greenberg, for any tax issues you may be facing. Anthony
Free Consultation (619) 501-5251