Innocent Spouse Relief


Many married taxpayers choose to file a joint tax return because of certain benefits this filing status allows. Both taxpayers are jointly and individually responsible for the tax and any interest or penalty due on the joint return even if they later divorce. This is true even if a divorce decree states that a former spouse will be responsible for any amounts due on previously filed joint returns. One spouse may be held responsible for all the tax due even if all the income was earned by the other spouse.

Section 6015 of the Internal Revenue Code provides that in certain cases a spouse may be relieved of the tax, interest, and penalties on a joint tax return. Three types of relief are available.

  • Innocent spouse relief under IRC § 6015(b);
  • Allocation of liability under IRC § 6015(c); and
  • Equitable relief under IRC § 6015(f)

The analysis of whether you are entitled to one of the three forms of innocent spouse relief is complicated.  Our attorneys possess required knowledge of tax laws and IRS procedures to determine if you qualify for the relief.  We can represent you from making an innocent spouse claim on your behalf through litigating your case in front of the Tax Court.  If you owe a tax liability which may be attributable to your former or present spouse, contact Holtz, Slavett & Drabkin for evaluation of your case.

Holtz, Slavett & Drabkin, APLC
Former IRS Tax Attorneys
(310) 550-6200
315 S. Beverly Drive
Suite 515
Beverly Hills, CA 90212