Filing Status Considerations: Divorce
If you're separated, considering a divorce, or are already divorced, you should be aware of the income tax ramifications of your divorce-related financial decisions. An important consideration should be the filing status you select for your federal income tax return. Your filing status is important because it determines (in part) the deductions and credits available to you, the amount of standard deduction that you may be entitled to, and your correct amount of tax. Depending on your situation, you may or may not have a choice regarding your filing status. Generally speaking, there are four filing statuses available to individuals who are divorced or are considering a divorce: single (unmarried), married filing jointly, married filing separately, and head of household.
Thorough familiarity with the concept of filing status also involves some understanding of the innocent spouse rules, as well as divorce timing considerations.