More Taxpayers Qualify for Innocent Spouse Relief After Change in IRS Position

After suffering several Tax Court defeats, the IRS recently announced that they will no longer impose a two-year limitation period on taxpayers’ ability to obtain innocent spouse equitable relief under IRC section 6015(f).  Equitable relief under IRC 6015(f) is often the only avenue of relief available to taxpayers due to the strict requirements imposed by IRC sections 6015(b) and 6015(c).  This is welcome news to those who help taxpayers obtain relief from the joint and several tax debts.

Taxpayers may now request and obtain relief if their claims are filed within the ten-year collection period provided by IRC section 6502 (or, for refunds, the three-year refund period provided by IRC section 6511).  Those whose requests for relief were denied because they were deemed untimely may reapply for relief and may still qualify for a refund.  For individuals whose cases are currently being litigated, the IRS will seek to continue the action and process the claims administratively.  For those whose litigation is final, the IRS will take no further collection activity if the IRS stipulated in the court proceeding that the individual’s equitable relief request would have been granted had the request been timely filed.

The attorneys of the Pittsburgh law firm Williams Coulson  regularly represent clients with innocent spouse matters both before the Internal Revenue Service and at United States Tax Court.  Please do not hesitate to contact Stephen J. Pieklik, Brandon P. Smith, or Sarah D. Blask should you have any questions concerning your innocent spouse matter.

IRS CIRCULAR 230 TAX ADVICE DISCLAIMER: Any federal tax advice contained in this communication (including attachments or enclosures) is not intended or written to be used, and it cannot be used, for the purpose of (1) avoiding any penalty that may be imposed by the Internal Revenue Service or (2) promoting, marketing or recommending any transaction or matter.