There are differences between an Injured Spouse and an Innocent Spouse. Here we’ll discuss Injured Spouse issues.
The injured spouse provisions are used when a married couple wants to file a joint return to get the benefits of the married filing joint tax rates. In this case one spouse owes money that the IRS is trying to collect. It could be taxes that the other spouse is not liable for, student loans, unpaid child support or alimony or state taxes. A Form 8379 Injured Spouse Allocation is filed with the return. On this form the income, expenses and exemptions are allocated to the appropriate spouse. The IRS then makes a determination of how much of the refund belongs to the injured spouse. That amount is sent the injured spouse and the remainder is kept and applied to the debt of the other spouse.