Navigate Up
Sign In
Last Updated: 6/22/2018

Separation of Liability Program

Spouses who file a joint income tax return are both responsible for the full amount of tax, penalty, and interest owed. If you are now divorced, legally separated, or widowed, you can ask the Minnesota Department of Revenue to adjust your income tax debt under the Separation of Liability Program.
Note: We do not honor divorce decrees, even if they state that you are not liable for tax debt. We may collect state tax debt from either spouse. You need to seek repayment from your spouse or former spouse on your own.

How do I apply for the Separation of Liability Program?

Send us a letter asking for help under the Separation of Liability Program. You must send us:
  • A signed letter including your name, the last four digits of your Social Security number, your phone number, and the tax years you are requesting help. 
  • A copy of your final divorce decree, final separation agreement, or your spouse’s death certificate. If you’re divorced, send the first page of the decree listing the parties involved and is stamped by the courts, and the page where the judge signed the order.
Mail your request letter to:
Minnesota Revenue
Mail Station 7701
St. Paul, MN 55146-7701

What happens after I apply?

We will review your application and may contact you to ask for more information. We will send a letter notifying you if you qualify for the program:
  • If you do not qualify, the letter will explain why.
  • If you do qualify, the letter will explain our proposal to calculate your portion of the debt.
​If Then
​You agree with our proposal ​You do not need to take action.
​You disagree with our proposal ​You must send us documents showing why our proposal is incorrect within 30 days of our letter.
​We do not hear from you within 30 days ​We will consider your request complete and make our final determination.
Note: Until your request is complete, we will apply your tax refunds to the debt.

What happens after you make your final determination?

We will send you and your spouse or former spouse a final determination letter stating the amount you each owe. Either of you may appeal to Minnesota Tax Court if you disagree with our final determination.

You are responsible for your assigned part of the tax debt. We will send you a refund if you overpaid your part of the debt and are entitled to a refund.