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How to determine your tax return filing status

Ah, an old question.  I've had more than one phone call from a client trying to determine what their filing status is for a tax return.  How can it be that you file as single if you were married nearly all the year in question?  How can it be that you may file as married filing jointly if you were single for nearly the entire year.  Does it make sense and why?
Look at the problem this way.  Your filing status (with certain exceptions like a spouse who passes away in the tax year) is determined based on your status on the last day of the year.  It does not matter how many days previous to that you were single or married.  As mentioned briefly, there are exceptions to the rule but for the vast majority of people, that is how you should consider the issue.
What are the exceptions?  Well, give me a call for a tax consultation should you feel you might fall into that type of situation.
I am a CPA in San Antonio and provide bookkeeping, payroll, taxes and more.  We provide a free initial visit and look forward to serving your business needs.

Richard J. Garcia | 07/06/2011