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How Many Years of Innocent Spouse Relief Can You Claim?

How Many Years of Innocent Spouse Relief Can You Claim?

There is no limit to how many years of innocent spouse relief you can request. However, other factors may limit how many years of innocent spouse relief you will qualify for.

Two-Year Limit to Request Relief

For two of the three types of innocent spouse relief, you must request relief within two years of the date the IRS begins collection activity or you otherwise become aware of the tax liability. This two-year period may begin when any of the following things take place:

  • You receive an IRS notice, including notice of adjustment to your return.
  • The IRS seizes your tax refund.
  • The IRS files a claim in a bankruptcy or other court proceeding.
  • The United States sues you to collect the tax.
  • You receive a notice of intent to levy your property.

This limitation may prevent you from claiming relief for older tax years. However, the IRS sometimes takes a while to begin collection activity, so you may still be able to request relief for several tax years.

If the IRS never sent you any notices or attempted to collect the tax, you may request relief for as many tax years as you want, as long as you meet the other requirements for claiming innocent spouse relief.

Equitable Relief

Equitable relief is not subject to the two-year limitations period. This opens the door for you to potentially claim relief for many tax years.

You must file your request for equitable relief within the period the IRS has to collect the tax. This is generally ten years, but can be extended in certain situations.

If you are using equitable relief to claim a credit or refund, you have either three years from the date the return was filed or two years from when the tax was paid, whichever is later.

Other Tax Resolution Options

A tax resolution attorney can listen to the facts of your case and determine how many years of innocent spouse relief you may qualify for. If some of your tax debt won’t be eligible for innocent spouse relief, there are many other tax relief strategies at your disposal.

You have a limited time to request innocent spouse relief and some other tax relief programs, so consult a tax attorney as soon as possible to discuss your options.

The Gartzman Law Firm can help you request innocent spouse and deal with other tax problems after a divorce. Use our contact form to request a consultation with an Atlanta tax resolution attorney.