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Can I itemize federal return if I claim standard deductions on State return. (California)?

Asked by: ubinas 628 views YA Discussion

Hi

I want to itemize my federal tax return and go with standard deductions on state return. This is for 2011 tax year.
I filed as Married Filing Joint for previous year (2010 tax year). This year I’m filing as Married Filing Separate. And I ‘m living separate for the entire 2011 year.

Thanks!

(calculations show that this is best way to go for both of us, me and my former spouse. but the question is can I do it?
I can not find anything about it in the form 540 instructions. Can you give the source of the claim that California return has to be same as Federal please.
In fact, California doesn’t require it to be the same way, as they (form 540 instructions) talk about the case where California is itemized while the Federal is not. So my question is for the opposite case.

How others found here:

  • can i claim standard deduction for federal and itemized in state california
  • if i file an itemized federal return can i file a standard deduction NY state return
  • if I have itemazed deduction from 2012 i can used in 2013 tax return?

2 Answers



  1. tro on Apr 16, 2012 Reply

    if you file married separately you have to use the same method, either standard or itemized and sometimes splitting the sch A is harmful to one or the other
    Calif. requires you file the same way as you do on the Federal

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  2. Max Hoopla on Apr 16, 2012 Reply

    I think you have it backwards. Your itemized deductions can be too little to itemize on your 1040 but still be enough to itemize on your 540.

    The pigeon hole for deduction on the 540 does ask for your itemized OR standard deduction. If you want to give the state more money by taking the standard deduction, it won’t argue with you.

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