And Now, More Celebrity Tax Debt! Songstress Alicia Key's matrimonial bliss may have ended when she realized her new husband owes the IRS over $2Million! Alicia Key's husband Swizz Beats (Kasseem Dean) has a total of $4 million in taxes if three different states.
Owing Your Spouse's Debt- How it Happens
Alicia Keys didn't rack up the outlandish debt, but she may end up being responsible for it! I constantly recieve e-mails from taxpayers who are stuck with their spouse or ex-spouse's debt. They want to move on, but they're stuck with their ex's tax bill! Here's the rub:
Community Property States: If you get married in a community property state all the debts your spouse had prior to marrying you are now your responsibility. If you get married in the following state, you marry your honey's tax debt, too: Arizona, California, Idaho, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Washington, Wisconsin.
Filing Jointly: You may save money by filing taxes jointly with yours spouse, but do so with caution. You might trust your husband or wife and simply sign without checking the information. This is how many end up owning debt with this spouse. If you file jointly, you pay the tax debt jointly! And saying, "I didn't know what my spouse filed!" doesn't work if you signed it! When you sign it, you take responsibility. Period.
On Innocent Spouse Relief
I'm going to be straight with you about Innocent Spouse Relief- very few people will qualify for it. Innocent Spouse Relief is for emergency situations. You have to go above and beyond the call of duty to prove you don't owe debt your spouse racked up. I said it before but I'll say it again, if you signed the joint tax return, you will owe the tax debt. If there's a dispute with your spouse, you might have to take it to court or divorce court. Who should pay what will not be the IRS's concern- they just want it paid.
Equitable Relief: Remove Your Spouse's Tax Debt
Equitable Relief is a little like "Innocent Spouse Relief" - you are relieved of the debt your spouse owes. But this plan is only offered in extreme situations. These scenarios usually involve domestic abuse, sudden disabilities, serious illnesses and prolonged hospital stays. These are life changing events that shattered your finances. If you feel Equitable Relief applies to you, ask the IRS or a tax debt professional if you qualify.