Every year, no matter what one's relationship status is, the complexities
of tax season will roll around once again. If you are in the midst of
a divorce right now, or if you split up in the last year, tax season just
became that much more complicated. Here then are several tips to help
you as you face taxes in this time of transition.
1) Get your filing status right. Was your divorce finalized as of December 31, 2013? If you were divorced
by that time, then you would file as a single person. If you have a child,
then you may be able to file as a head of household, which provides tax
advantages. If by the end of last year, your
divorce was not completed, then you would still pick "married filing jointly"
or "married filing separately", but filing jointly is usually
2) Can you claim a dependent exemption for your child? This will depend on whether or not you have custody of your child. If
you were named the custodial parent in 2013, then you might also be able
to select child care and education tax credits. If you are the non-custodial
parent, there are some circumstances under which the custodial parent
can waive their exemption claim so you can claim it. This tax document
IRS Form 8332: Release/Revocation of Release of Claim to Exemption for Child by Custodial Parent.
3) Don't deduct child support payments. Whether you are the custodial or non-custodial parent, you cannot deduct
child support. But at least these payments will not get taxed as if it were part of
the receiving parent's income.
4) Pay close attention to tax rules on alimony. If
maintenance was awarded in your divorce, then the receiving party might get these
payments taxed as income, and the paying party might be able to deduct
these payments. This will probably be the case if you and your ex live
in different households, and one of you made alimony payments to the other
in 2013. However, alimony payments can only be deducted if they were cash,
checks, or money orders, for example, because property will not be counted
as alimony for tax purposes. Also, if you and your ex are still in the
same household after a divorce (such as when both parties decide to co-own
the marital home for a period after the divorce), then the alimony you
receive could be taxed, but your ex could not deduct these payments.
5) Alimony might help you with your IRA.
Alimony could go into an Individual Retirement Account, and if you put these funds
into the account by April 15, they might be deductible from your taxes.
6) Work with a financial planner. While this is advisable for most people filing taxes, this is especially
true when you face taxes and divorce at the same time. Not only is it
important to understand the financial implications of your divorce, but
if you are currently getting a divorce right now, a financial planner
can help you know where you stand financially, and what you need for your
Knowing what you need is one thing, achieving the right results in your
divorce is another. But if you have the right divorce lawyer on your side,
you can come away with the divorce settlement that you deserve. Whether
you are about to file for divorce, are in the throes of this process,
or need to
modify a finalized divorce settlement, do not wait to
contact the Meyers Law Group, P.C. today. Find out how our experienced Long Island divorce attorney can help
you protect your rights.