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I was recommended an EA to help me file my taxes and he asked me to file an extension as he needs more time to read about my specific tax situation.

If I were to file an extension could I, later this year, choose to file either jointly (MFJ) with or separately (MFS) from my wife?

I read something about couples not having the ability to choose to file jointly after the April 17th deadline (after which they could only choose to file separately), but it might have to do specifically with amending a tax return rather than extending it

My tax situation (if that could change the answer) is detailed here: F1 student, as a non-resident, filing married separate tax return with US Citizen wife

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No such thing, total nonsense. What you might have read is that once you filed MFJ - you cannot go MFS unless you do so before the filing deadline (April 15th).

  • In that case couples should always file an extension if they are not sure if they want to MFS or MFJ by April 15th/17th? Is there a risk of forfeiting certain tax credits even if they file MFJ, if they file beyond April 15th/17th? – sekharan Apr 10 '13 at 3:51
  • @sekharan I'm not sure I understand what you're asking. – littleadv Apr 10 '13 at 4:30
  • Do couples run a risk of forfeiting certain tax credits if they file beyond April 15th? Do some tax credits expire by April 15th regardless of how you file (MFS/MFJ) later during your extended period? – sekharan Apr 10 '13 at 15:00
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    @sekharan to the best of my knowledge, if you properly extend the filing deadline - nothing expires. You do have to pay on time regardless of the filing extension though, payment must be postmarked on or before April 15th. – littleadv Apr 10 '13 at 17:12

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