Southern Charm Overcomes Tax Trauma

Today TaxMama hears from Kate in Mississippi who has this problem, “I am married filing separate in Mississippi because my husband has continuously been delinquent on his taxes.
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I am trying to protect myself. I have a house in my name. I bought the house. I am now told by Mississippi tax commission that I cannot qualify for homestead exemption because HE is delinquent.
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Is there anything that I can do to protect myself against his irresponsibility? We have never filed taxes together. I am too afraid to.“

Dear Kate,

Please check with someone locally, who can help you with Mississipi tax law. I’m afraid I’m not familiar with local and state laws and regulations.
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In general, you’re doing fine keeping things separated, at least for IRS purposes.
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But, this can’t go on forever. It will interfere with anything good that comes into your lives.

Please, see if you can use some of that famous Southern charm to help him see it as his idea to fix his finances. Nagging won’t help.

But I’ll tell you this much, from my experience dealing with this for a couple of decades, whenever a man is in trouble like this, it’s his wife or girlfriend who gets him out of it. It takes a firm hand and a kind one to encourage him to catch up.

And it might require your time and help to get his records gathered together so he can take them to a tax professional so the returns can be completed.

Once the tax returns are prepared, he’ll know where he stands as far as his total tax debt is concerned. Let’s face it, his biggest fear is that he’s already in so deep he can’t get out. And seeing the monster he’s been hiding from will make it easier to vanquish it.

With the balance due in hand, he can either set up payment plan and pay it off; or if the debt is too large, he can approach the IRS and the state and request an offer in compromise. That may take a year or two to complete, but then it will be over.

The only way you’re going to have control of your life and finances, as long as you are married to him, is to help him take charge of his finances.

And if you do? You’ll live happily ever after!

And remember, you’ll find answers to questions about IRS Collections and all kinds of tax issues, free. Where? Where else? At

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