I’m Filing Jointly with my Husband, Should I Sign a Tax Return I Know is Incorrect?

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“I live in New York State and My husband knows I plan to divorce him and I have been doing the books for his business for the past 8 years. I stopped doing his books towards the end of 2006. I gave the information to the accountant to do the income tax and received a call from him that my husband had, had an income of 93 thousand for the 2006 and would have to pay 30 thousand in tax returns. After that my husband filed an extension. I received a copy the returns today (because it is my right since we are still married) and he came up with a bunch of false deductions that lowered his income to 34 thousand this year. That way when I go to divorce him it will look like he doesn’t have much income. I have not signed them yet he doesn’t know I have a copy. If in the event that he does have me sign the returns as he legally should. Can I sign them under protest because I don’t believe they are correct? And will that help me in court when I divorce? Or should I not sign them at all because I feel they are incorrect?”

[NOTE: Articles and answers on DearEsq., while written and published by lawyers, do not constitute legal advice, and no attorney-client relationship is formed by your reading of this information. You should always consult with an attorney for any legal situations.]

There is some information missing here, such as whether you have in the past or will now be filing jointly, or separately. However, in any case, and particularly if you are filing jointly (as the need for your signature would indicate), if you have reason to know that the numbers your husband is providing to the IRS are false, you should speak with your attorney, and the accountant. By knowingly signing what may be a fraudulent return, you may find that you yourself are a party to tax fraud.

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Author: House Attorney

A house attorney has answered this question.