I moved from VA to PA in late May 2010. I continued working for the same company and got a raise during the move. I also became married in mid June 2010. I have to file state tax returns in both states this year. Personally, I earned about 1/3rd of my total income while living in VA as a single person, and the remaining 2/3rd as a married person in PA. My wife lived in PA the entire year and has her own job.

We would like to file "Married Filing Jointly" because "Married Filing Separately" forces you to only take the standard deduction and we will benefit more if we can itemize. In TaxACT, when I began to enter in all of this information, they made it seem like I owe VA thousands of dollars. While I lived there for less than 5 whole months, TaxACT had my reported income in VA as my entire salary for the year + my wife's salary.

I don't feel like I should owe VA money based upon our combined income when I moved away before I got married, nor should VA be able to tax my wife who never lived there. I also don't feel like VA should tax me based upon my income for the entire year when I spent less than half of the year there.

Can I submit my Virginia taxes as Single and do my Federal and Pennsylvania taxes as Married Filing Jointly?

UPDATE: Looks like I jumped to conclusions. I was able to use part-year residency in both PA and VA and things are looking much better now. There are two things I'm not sure about now: 1) For VA, they had my 1/3rd salary as my taxable income. Later, I was asked if I paid taxes in another state, so I entered what I paid in PA. This shot my VA refund way up. I'm not sure why, hopefully that's correct 2) Also for VA, when entering the dates for my part-year residency, I had fields for both my wife and myself. I only entered myself. TaxACT showed that later as a warning, but with Married Filing Jointly, she never lived in VA. When I did PA, only I was asked to provide the dates for part-year. Anyone see a potential problem here?

2 Answers 2


Don't treat this as a tax advice but I think if you were married on Dec 31, 2010 you probably have to file as Married (whether jointly or separately) in both states. Doesn't matter if you wife worked in VA or not.

  • This is good advice because it is very true.
    – MrChrister
    Mar 21, 2011 at 16:02

Please don't think I am an expert.

For my part, when I was in that same situation (although different states) we filed jointly, with part-time residency in both places.

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