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Please help: Whats out tax filing status?

Posted: Thu Mar 13, 2014 9:28 am
by katnok
My wife and I have been in the US for almost 7 years. While my visa status has been H1b throughout, my wife's changed from H4 (dependent) when we first came to the US, to F1 (student) in March 2013.

We had no issues filing our taxes as MFJ for the tax years 2007-2012 as were were considered "resident aliens" for tax purposes. However, we are not certain if we can still file as MFJ for 2013 due to my wife's visa change from H4 to F1.

Based on IRS definition of Substantial Present Test (http://www.irs.gov/individuals/internat ... sence-test), my wife appears to be eligible to file as a resident alien, but I am not entirely sure if it applies to her as there are some exemptions (please scroll to the bottom of the page to "Exempt individual" on the IRS link).

I am currently on the phone waiting to get help from someone at Taxpayer Advocate Service, but thought I would check here as well.

Thank you in advance.

Re: Please help: Whats out tax filing status?

Posted: Thu Mar 13, 2014 9:38 am
by HueyLD
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Re: Please help: Whats out tax filing status?

Posted: Thu Mar 13, 2014 9:57 am
by katnok
Thank you, HueyLD. I did go through that page, but our situation is slightly different in that my wife WAS on a different visa (and different filing status) at the beginning of the year.

Re: Please help: Whats out tax filing status?

Posted: Thu Mar 13, 2014 10:40 am
by montesquieu
(I posted before, but deleted the post because I think I misunderstood the circumstances and the rules.)

It sounds like YOU are a resident alien for tax purposes, so regardless of whether your spouse is, she can be TREATED as one.

http://www.irs.gov/publications/p519/ch ... 1000222193

So whether your spouse actually is a resident alien may be a moot point. But here is an attempt at figuring it out. See Example 6 at the following link:

http://www.irs.gov/Individuals/Internat ... y-Examples

It suggests to me that your wife was a non-exempt individual (non-exempt from the Substantial Presence Test) for all these years. But beginning with her visa change, she is an exempt individual.

Re: Please help: Whats out tax filing status?

Posted: Thu Mar 13, 2014 10:51 am
by katnok
Thank you, montesquieu. Your links were quite helpful.

I just got off the phone (after being on for more than 1.5 hr) with IRS. The lady was trying to help, but guess what. The info on the IRS website was more helpful than the lady on the phone.

Finally, we are going to file as MFJ just like we did so far, but attach a signed statement asking IRS to treat both of us resident aliens for 2013.