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February 16, 2009

Married Filing Jointly

Your Guide



Husband and wife , whose status of being married are defined under federal , who file a joint tax return.  A joint tax return can be filed even if one of the spouses has neither gross income nor deductions.

Referring Cite

IRC §  6013, IRS Instructions for Filing Tax Returns available at

Additional Helpful Information

  • Generally, a married couple may not file a joint return if the following applies:
    • either the husband or wife at any time during the taxable year is a nonresident alien;
    • the husband and wife have different taxable years. An exception may apply if such taxable years begin on the same day and end on different days because of the death of either or both, and the spouse does not remarry during the taxable year

Other rules apply.

An individual should consult with a tax professional regarding eligibility and suitability of tax filing status

Written By

Denise Appleby

Denise is CEO of Appleby Retirement Consulting Inc., a firm that provides IRA resources for financial/ tax/legal professionals. She has over 20 years of experience in the retirement plans field, which includes training and technical consultation.

Denise writes and publishes educational /marketing tools for advisors; available at Denise co-authored several books on IRAs

Denise is a graduate of The John Marshall Law School, where she obtained a Masters of Jurisprudence in Employee Benefits, and has earned 5 professional retirement designations.
She has appeared on numerous media programs, sharing her insights on retirement tax laws.


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