Posted On: January 27, 2012 by Mitchell A. Port

New Guidelines For Innocent Spouse Relief

Right after the New Year, the Internal Revenue Service released new proposed guidelines designed to provide relief to more innocent spouses requesting equitable relief from income tax liability. In an earlier blog post, other rule changes were discussed.

A Notice proposing a new revenue procedure revises the threshold requirements for requesting equitable relief and revises the factors used by the IRS in evaluating these requests. The factors have been revised to ensure that requests for innocent spouse relief are granted under section 6015(f) when the facts and circumstances warrant and that, when appropriate, requests are granted in the initial stage of the administrative process. The new guidelines are available immediately and will remain available until the finalized revenue procedure is published. The IRS will immediately begin using these new guidelines when evaluating equitable relief requests.

"The IRS is significantly changing the way we determine innocent spouse relief," said IRS Commissioner Doug Shulman. "These improvements should dramatically enhance our process to make it fairer for victimized taxpayers facing difficult situations.”

This is the second major change made to the innocent spouse program. In July, the IRS extended help to more innocent spouses by eliminating the two-year time limit that previously applied to requests seeking equitable relief.

Need help? Call a qualified tax litigation attorney at (310) 559-5259.