Dex Media Retargeting Pixel
Tax Considerations during a divorce

In recognition of tax season, we are delving into essential tax considerations to plan for when getting a divorce. Embarking on the journey of divorce or separation involves addressing a myriad of issues, and one crucial aspect that often comes into play is the intersection of family law, taxes, and sound financial planning. As family law attorneys are not tax experts, having a knowledgeable accountant is essential to discuss the pros and cons of financial settlements. With that in mind, we aim to highlight significant tax considerations that can come into play during the process of divorce or separation. At Duluth Family Lawyer, we’re here to assist you through this difficult period. Count on our knowledgeable team to guide you through the legal and financial complexities of divorce, protecting your rights and interests.

Tax Considerations


Spousal Maintenance

Spousal maintenance is typically awarded based on factors such as the length of the marriage, the financial needs of the recipient, and the paying spouse’s ability to provide support. Spousal maintenance can be temporary or long-term, and its duration may vary based on the unique circumstances of each case. It’s essential to keep up with the evolving tax implications for both the payer and the recipient when it comes to spousal maintenance to approach discussions proactively. According to the IRS, some alimony or spousal maintenance payments are eligible for deduction by the paying spouse, while the recipient spouse is required to include them as income. Stay informed on tax laws to make well-informed decisions during the spousal maintenance negotiation process, ensuring a smoother financial transition for both parties involved.


Addressing Missed Tax Return Filing Deadlines

Another tax consideration when filing for a divorce is addressing missed tax return filing deadlines. It’s not uncommon for individuals to miss filing their tax returns for various reasons. In many instances, divorce cases necessitate the submission of all past federal and state tax returns to the IRS and state authorities. This is crucial in determining potential tax liabilities or refunds for the missed years, as couples must navigate the division of anticipated tax responsibilities or refunds. Delaying this process until after the divorce may lead to increased interest and penalties. Stay informed and proactive in managing missed tax return filing deadlines for a smoother financial transition.


Child Support and Dependency Exemptions:

Child support is a central component of many divorce cases. Delve into the tax considerations surrounding child support payments, the rules for claiming children as dependents, and the importance of clear family court orders. Addressing these issues promptly can prevent IRS flags on both parents’ tax returns. Family court orders involving children must explicitly state which tax year a parent claims a child for tax purposes. The IRS closely examines situations where both parents individually claim the child for taxes, making clear court orders essential. You can continue to claim your child as a dependent on your tax return if the divorce decree names you as the custodial parent. If you’re the parent who claims the dependent exemption, you’re also the one who has the right to claim the child tax credit or an American Opportunity. Put another way, if you can’t claim the exemption, you can’t claim those credits, even if you pay the college bills.


Filing Status Considerations and Deciding Which Year to Divorce:

Understanding how you file can significantly influence your tax liabilities. Examine the consequences of filing as married, single, or head of household, especially during and after a divorce. If you and your spouse are in the process of splitting up but not yet divorced by the year’s end, you can still choose to file a joint return. However, once your divorce decree is finalized, this joint return option is no longer available. Keep in mind that your filing status is determined by your marital status as of December 31.


Documenting for Financial Clarity:

Effective record-keeping is paramount during divorce proceedings. Understand the crucial documents, such as court orders, financial statements, and communication records, that need to be maintained. A well-documented approach, coupled with the expertise of both a family lawyer and a tax professional, ensures you are prepared for any potential tax-related challenges.

Navigating the tax implications of divorce or separation requires careful consideration and strategic planning. By understanding the changing landscape of spousal maintenance, optimizing filing status choices, and addressing missed tax return filing deadlines, you can feel confident in moving forward with your divorce proceedings. 

At Duluth Family Lawyer, we’re here to provide you with the guidance and support you need during this challenging time. Our experienced team can help you understand the legal and financial implications of divorce, ensuring that your rights are protected and your best interests are served. Don’t face these challenges alone. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and take the first step towards a brighter future.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *