Form 1040-X - Amended Return MFJ to MFS

If two taxpayers filed a Married Filing Joint return that was accepted by the IRS, and want to complete amended returns to change the filing status to Married Filing Separate, please note the following:

  • You cannot change from Joint to Separate after the due date, April 15, 2019, per the IRS instructions on the Form 1040X.
  • If you have a refund on the joint return, you should generally wait until you receive the refund before amending the return.
  • If you itemize on one return, you will need to itemize on the other separate return.
  • Some deductions and credits are limited on separate returns, such as the amount of deductible IRA contributions, education credits, etc.
  • Call the IRS at 1-800-829-1040 for questions you may have on amending the return.
  • For additional information, see IRS Topic 308 Amended Returns.
Steps to completing the amendment:
  1. Print a copy of the joint return filed and accepted by the IRS.
  2. Start two new returns and enter the data for each taxpayer in the program (Note: We recommend creating two new TaxAct accounts in addition to the original account). You will need to determine what data to enter for each return, such as which taxpayer will claim which of the dependents.
  3. Print each of the separate returns, and carefully compare each of them with the joint return.
The person with the primary social security number on the original return will need to complete a Form 1040X, and select the filing status of Married Filing Separately. In Part III of the 1040X, explain the line number for each item you are changing and the reason for each change. The 1040X will need to be mailed to the IRS.

See the Help Topic Amending Your Federal Return - Form 1040X for more information.

The person with the secondary social security number on the original return will need to file a new return with a filing status of Married Filing Separately, and mail this return to the IRS. 

See the Help Topic Filing a Paper Return for more information.