Knowledge Base

11051: 1040 - Nonresident Alien Spouse

Rejects + EF Messages

Can I e-file a return that has a Nonresident Alien Spouse who does not have an SSN/ITIN?


Depending on the exact situation and filing status, a return with a non-resident alien spouse may be eligible for e-file.

To indicate that the spouse is a non-resident alien without a valid SSN or ITIN, on federal screen 1:

  • leave the SSN box blank,
  • enter NRA in the spouse First name field,
  • check the box Nonresident alien,
  • (optional) check the boxes Spouse is not filing a return and Spouse has no U.S. income, if applicable.

Generally, if Married Filing Separate (MFS), the return will be eligible for e-file. 

If Married Filing Joint (MFJ), the spouse has to have a valid ITIN or SSN to be able to e-file (IRS would reject due to Business rule F1040-007-01).

On a Head of Household (HOH) return where the taxpayer is claiming a nonresident alien spouse's exemption, EF Message 5572 prevents e-filing. The IRS requires a valid SSN if both options Spouse is not filing a return and Spouse has no U.S. income are marked. If e-filed, the return would be rejected with code R0000-530-02.

See IRS Publication 501 for details on filing status requirements and claiming of exemptions. 

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