When we were both active duty, it was pretty easy when tax time came. The military finance department took what was Sam's and let us keep what was left. About 15 years ago I started using Turbo Tax, more to have a digital record then anything. Like many or most of the programs that help you do your taxes, it asked the questions and I dutifully filled in the blanks. When it got to the state(s) that we lived in, it was easy as we were permanent residents of one of those "no-state-income-tax" states (yes by birth), and even if we weren't there, we were full time residents due to our military service.
But then things changed when my service life was over and I ... became ... a ... civilian.
Now, in and of itself, this becoming a civilian is a mighty fine thing, until ... our milspouse moves to another non-tax friendly state, and we leave our jobs, for another job in another not-so-tax-friendly state. YIKES! You take out HOW MUCH for WHAT???
Any idea how many states Turbo Tax will let you live in before it cooks your lil' PCs processor trying to figure out "how much" you owe or hopefully, how much you're going to get back, and from whom?"
Well, so far I don't know either as I've only hit three and it still works.
My point? Keep everything and every record of note in a safe place in your files. Then when it's time to file, be very, very methodical about data entry. Have questions still? Then go see your milspouse's unit tax adviser -- the orderly rooms have the names. Can't find that? Then get in touch with the JAG office -- they have a list of advisers who can assist as most every installation has a multitude of "authorized" folks who for some reason really LIKE doing this stuff. (Do be wary of the jail-house lawyer and the barroom tax adviser ...) Get it right the first time and hopefully you'll get a bit of a refund.
One question I often hear, "He/She's overseas, how do we get a signature for the 1040?" Here's the IRS Pub 3 (Armed Forces Tax Guide) comments on "Signing Returns" ... http://www.irs.gov/publications/p3/ar02.html#d0e3142
Can't sleep? Here's the "Readers' Digest" version of IRS Pub 3; a good starting point to do research ... http://apps.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=97273,00.html
Good Luck -- I gotta get back to Turbo Tax -- I smell my processor cookin'. O&O, MaintenanceToadOne