Last Updated : January 14, 2009
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Form 8379

Injured Spouse Claim an Allocation

Form 8379 is filed by one spouse (the injured spouse) on a jointly filed tax return, when the joint overpayment was applied to a past-due obligation of the other spouse. By filing this form, the injured spouse may be able to get back his or her share of the joint return.

The injured spouse should complete and file Form 8379 if all three of the following apply and he/she wants refund for the injured spouse.

  • Injured spouse is not legally obligated to pay the past-due amount.
  • Injured spouse reported income such as wages, taxable interest, etc., on the joint return.
  • Injured spouse made and reported payments, such as federal income tax withheld from his/her wages or estimated tax payments, or claimed the earned income credit or other refundable credit, on the joint return.
  • Part I – Information about the joint tax return for which this claim is filed
    On line 1 of this part, select the appropriate box for injured spouse and then answer to line 2 to line 6.

    If any spouse lives in a community property state, special rules will apply to the calculation of injured spouse refund. If main home of spouse is in a community property state, then check the box for community state on line 6.
    Part II – Allocation between spouses of items on the joint tax return
    To determine properly the amount of tax owed and overpayment due to each spouse, an allocation must be made as if each spouse filed a separate tax return instead of a joint tax return. So, each spouse must allocate his or her separate wages, self-employment income and expenses, and credits. Other items that may not clearly belong to either spouse would be equally divided.

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