There are four marital statuses that may apply to you:
- Living common law
Married applies only to persons who are
legally married. This includes when you and your spouse are separated
involuntarily, such as when spouses live apart for work or school, or if one
spouse is incarcerated.
Living Common Law
If you have a partner to whom you are not
legally married, then they may be your common law spouse. You should file as
“living common law” if:
The two of you have been
cohabiting for at minimum 12 months in a row;
The two of you are parents of a
child, by birth or adoption; and
Together you have custody and
control of your child and your child is dependent on your partner for support.
Partners or spouses are not separated
parties for tax purposes until they have been living separate and apart for at
least 90 days. If you have separated and not reconciled for a period longer
than 90 days, then you should file as separated. Once the 90 days has elapsed,
you should contact the CRA to change your status with them. If you have
children, they will recalculate your child care benefit, based on your new family
net income. You will continue to file as separated until you are divorced or you remarry or enter a new common law relationship as defined above.
You should change your status to divorced at the end of the month in which your divorce comes into effect.