If one spouse is a resident of Virginia and the other is a resident of another state, you cannot file a joint return unless you both agree that the joint income is taxable to Virginia as if you both are residents.
If not, the Virginia resident spouse would file a Virginia resident return (Form 760) and the nonresident spouse would file a Virginia nonresident return (Form 763). The filing status on both returns would be Married Filing Separate.
The spouses must determine the itemized deductions and allocate the exemptions for the dependents (if any). As a general rule, a spouse claiming an exemption for a dependent must be reporting at last half of the total federal adjusted gross income. Each spouse must also be able to support their claim for the itemized deductions. If each spouse cannot account for the deductions separately, the deductions must be allocated based on their share of the joint federal adjusted gross income.
Example: You filed jointly and your Adjusted Gross Income is $40,000. Of that amount, you earned $10,000. Your joint federal return shows you jointly claimed 5 exemptions. To determine if you are able to claim any of your dependents’ exemptions, you must apply the rules for separate filing.
You must demonstrate that you provided at least one-half of a dependent's support to be able to claim an exemption for that dependent. Because your share of the income ($10,000) is only 10% of the joint income reported, it is doubtful that you could prove 50% of the support for any of the dependents. Therefore, you may only claim your own exemption. You must go back into the program and remove the dependents you are not able to claim from the state return.