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‘I used to be discarded after 40 years of marriage’: Can my ex-husband file a joint tax return with out my consent? He tried to take each my stimulus checks 

Pricey Moneyist,

I’m 62 years of age, I’ve stopped working and I’m at the moment receiving Social Safety. My ex-husband is desiring to file a joint tax return, and advised me straight out that he doesn’t intend to present me any of our joint tax return, as a result of he mentioned that I’m now not working. What can I do about this? I used to be discarded after 40 years of marriage.

He additionally tried to maintain my $600, however I used to be prepared for him. I persuaded him to pay for a washer and dryer and I managed to get my $1,200 stimulus by the pores and skin of my enamel. I took the $1,200 out whereas divorce proceedings had been occurring and I nonetheless had financial institution entry. (He bought offended, however I nonetheless managed to get the higher of him.)

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Final 12 months, whereas we had been nonetheless married, he filed our joint return electronically in opposition to my needs and with out me understanding, and deposited the tax return in his checking account. Our divorce was finalized final November, so I now not have entry to his checking account.

Do I’ve any authorized proper to the return? Can he file a return with out my consent, and with no signature? How do I get the IRS to acknowledge me as a separate individual for any stimulus that comes my approach in 2021? I assume the IRS will use my 2020 tax return? I bought a five-figure settlement from him in our divorce as a substitute of alimony. Do I’ve to file taxes on the settlement?

Discarded After 40 Years

Wish to learn extra? Comply with Quentin Fottrell on Twitter and browse extra of his columns right here.

Pricey Discarded,

You will have requested me loads of questions, and I’ll endeavor to reply them. Earlier than I do, nevertheless, I need to provide two items of recommendation: Firstly, file a 2020 return. Secondly, rent an accountant to go over your funds. It may be a tough transition when another person — particularly, your ex-husband — has been taking good care of the funds and submitting your tax returns. 

Thirdly, it’s time to chop the emotional and monetary connection to your ex. In case you don’t need him to file joint returns, don’t hit him up for cash for a washer and dryer. Your divorce has been finalized. That’s nearly as good a time as any to not rely upon him for something. Any time he does you a favor, even when it’s one thing he owes you, it complicates your newfound freedom.

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As for the IRS, you’ll be able to confirm your identification with the company right here. The telephone traces are open, however customer-service assist is restricted at the moment. You’ll be able to choose your state for the Taxpayer Advocate Service right here, and report fraud right here. It’s doable to file a joint tax return if you end up nonetheless going by way of a divorce, however he ought to have sought your signature to take action.

Is your divorce settlement taxable? Such questions are finest answered by your divorce legal professional previous to your divorce to reduce your tax legal responsibility. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act eradicated deductions for alimony funds. Whether or not or not divorce settlements are taxable can rely upon how they’re structured; learn extra on that right here.

The time has come to take issues into your individual arms: Contact the IRS, file a tax return, speak to an accountant, circle again along with your legal professional, cease taking part in video games of cat and mouse along with your husband over stimulus checks and washers and dryers, and warn him that it’s unlawful to file a joint return with out your consent. Inform him you’ll take motion if he does.

You’ll be able to electronic mail The Moneyist with any monetary and moral questions associated to coronavirus at [email protected].

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