Wondering how to get your ITIN for your non-US citizen spouse or dependent?
A very common question, which is how to get an ITIN for your spouse. First, we want to start off with, who does this pertain to?
So, commonly it’s either US citizens who are married to non US citizens and they are looking to claim that non US citizen spouse on their US tax return as their spouse exemption, and do a married filing jointly case.
Or it could be an individual who is a US resident alien for tax purposes, they have a social security number, they’re not necessarily a US citizen, but they are looking to file a US federal tax return and they happened to be married to a non US citizen spouse and they’re looking at claim that non US citizen spouse on their taxes also as married filing jointly.
Start your ITIN application here: ITIN.com
How To Get an ITIN for a Non-US Citizen Spouse or dependent?
We have non-residents who are looking to claim their spouse on their tax as well, and they need to get an ITIN for them. Now, the key thing to note here is, I just addressed who the situation usually pertains to, but I also want to address the common misunderstanding with this type of case, which is that most people believe.
They think that you have to get your ITIN first for the spouse, and then you can go ahead and get the taxes taken care of and use the ITIN on them and file it, which is incorrect. That’s false.
They’re both actually done at the same time. That’s the key take home point for this article.
Here is common example..
They’ll come to us and say, “Hey, I went overseas and I’m a US citizen. I went overseas and I fell in love and I got married to a non-US citizen.” Let’s say, for example, from the Philippines.
So they’ll come to me and say, “I need to get an ITIN,” let’s say for this conversation, “for my wife in the Philippines. I need an ITIN for her so I can go ahead and file my taxes.”
Well, the common misconception here is that they’re thinking it needs to be done separately or you have to get an ITIN first, and then go ahead and then file your taxes and claim them on there. No, they’re done simultaneously. That’s where the misconception is there.
So the way it works is you need to, because the spouse on their own doesn’t qualify to apply for an ITIN, it’s being your spouse and being claimed on your taxes is what’s going to help them qualify to apply for an ITIN. That’s why it needs to be done simultaneously.
How do I get an ITIN for my foreign spouse?
We take that tax return along with the non US citizen spouses ITIN application and we file them together through the IRS manually.
Please keep in mind that when you are looking to get an ITIN for your spouse, that tax return they’re being claimed on cannot be electronically filed when that spouse does not have an ITIN or SSN.
It has to be manually filed with the non US citizen spouses ITIN application to the IRS.
Now, the years after that, after the ITINs issued, the years following, you can electronically file that tax return with the non US citizen spouses ITIN, but it’s just that first time where it needs to be manually filed.
That’s another key point to note and probably the second biggest take home point for this article. The fact that the first time the taxpayer is looking to get the ITIN for their spouse, that first tax return that they’re claiming them on, that needs to be manually filed with the non US citizen spouses ITIN application, and then the years following, it can be electronically filed after the ITIN was issued.
Then I also want to note that spouses are different than dependants. Dependents, when it comes to the ITIN application tax returns, they do require proof of it in order to be claimed as a dependent on a tax return and for us to be able to even get an ITIN for them.
But for spouses it’s different, they don’t have to be physically present in the US. They could be present physically outside the US in another country, but still be claimed as a spouse exemption on someone’s tax return and we could be able to get the ITIN for them, and they can be claimed as the spouse exemption.
So, we hope a lot of this confusion was clarified for you guys. We commonly get this case and it’s commonly misunderstood as well, too. So I really wanted to make sure I hit all these points in terms of the confusion for this topic.
Another thing too we want to note is, people often don’t realize too, that if they’ve been married for a few years and they filed previous tax returns for previous years under a different filing status.
For example, we have clients come in where they say they’ve been married for five years, one of them is a US citizen, the other is a non US citizen and the US citizen who’s a taxpayer, they’ll say, my previous four years, I’ve filed as married filing separately or as single, and they were on W2.
What they don’t realize is, they could have followed those previous years as married filing jointly and claimed they’re non US citizen spouse on their taxes as their spouse exemption married filing jointly and they could have gotten significantly more tax refund owed to them from the IRS.
They think now at this present time, they can’t go back and fix it, but that’s not true.
You can always go back and amend those tax returns to change the filing status on them from single to married filing jointly or married filing separately to married filing jointly and claim that non US citizen spouse on that tax return and we can use that amended return to go with the non US citizen spouses ITIN application and file them all together with the IRS so that these are all amended.
It’s important to note because there’s a lot of money that’s left on the table that’s owed to you. Don’t let that go to waste. That’s your own hard earned money that you should be getting. So, a lot of people don’t want to do it.
They’re lazy, or they just don’t have the energy to do it, but you really should. It’s really important because that money could go to a great cause whether it’s for yourself, for your family or for your children. So it’s extremely crucial.
We also wanted to point that out as well too because we see that a lot.
So, if these situations pertain to you, if it hits home for you and these are the reasons why you would like to get an ITIN for yourself as a spouse of a US citizen or a US resident alien, or non-resident, please reach out to us.
We’d love to help you get your ITIN. If you have any questions, reach out to us directly, we’d love to answer them for you.
Start your ITIN application here: ITIN.com
How To File For Your ITIN Properly For Your Spouse
So the way it’ll work is the tax return needs to be prepared. And in this case that we’re talking about, if it’s a spouse, it would be a married filing jointly tax return. A
And the tax return needs to be prepared either by the client or either by yourself or we can prepare it for you as well, too.
Then we also prepare your ITIN application properly for you as well. And then what we do is we make sure both of you sign the tax return because spouses need to sign tax returns as well as the person who’s tax return it is.
Dependents don’t have to sign tax returns, I just want to note that as well. And so what we do is we take that married filing jointly tax return and also that ITIN application for the spouse, we put them together and we manually file them together to the IRS service center in Austin, Texas.
Now when that tax examiner gets that file from us, they’re going to see that you have a married filing jointly tax return and the spouse has no tax ID, but they’re going to also see that an ITIN application was attached to that tax return.
So what they’ll do is they’ll first process is spouse’s ITIN application, issue the spouse an ITIN, and then the IRS will manually put that ITIN on the tax return and then process that tax return accordingly. The same is done as well for dependents too.
You’re not supposed to do them separately because oftentimes, the dependent or the spouse doesn’t qualify to apply for an ITIN on their own.
It’s being the dependent of a person who needs to claim them or being the spouse of a US citizen or a US resident alien who needs to claim them on their taxes, that qualifies them to be able to get an ITIN.
So that needs to be done simultaneously.
What To Do Next
If you’re ready to start your ITIN application, go ahead and don’t waste any more time, you can contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Go ahead and click the link below to get started, and once your order form’s completed, our team will go ahead and start working with you on your ITIN application.
As well getting the paperwork completed properly, and then ultimately filing with the IRS to help you get your ITIN.