Portrait of John K Grubb

Texas Divorce and Prenuptial Agreement

5005 Riverway Drive, Suite 450 • Houston, Texas 77056

Phone: 713-877-8800 • Fax: 713-877-1229

Divorcing Couples Need to Choose Head of Household Status

For the purposes of their taxes, spouses are single for the entire year during which their divorce becomes final (this means that if your divorce became final on December 31, 2011, for tax purposes, you and your spouse were not married for all of 2011). Divorced spouses have two options when it comes to taxes for their divorce year – file as “single” or as “head of household.” While the most tax benefits are generally available for married couples filing jointly, the next best option for a spouse would be to file as “head of household.”

In order to qualify as the “head of household,” a spouse (and the couple in general) does have to meet certain conditions:

  • The two spouses must have lived separately for the past six months
  • The spouse requesting “head of household” status must use his or her home as the main residence for dependents like children or elderly parents (note, though, that the rules for this requirement are complex and filed with exceptions, as, for example, dependent blood relatives do not have to live with you for the entire year for you to qualify as “head of household”)
  • The requesting spouse must have paid more than half of the costs of the household

Have you recently divorced? How did you and your ex-spouse decide who would get the head of household filing status?

John K. Grubb & Associates, P.C. – Houston divorce lawyers

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