For the next three months, the 2009 tax season is upon us. For divorcing couples, whether to file separately or jointly, who will claim the children and how to address alimony can add even more stress to the divorce and to tax season. However, Attorney Nancy Van Tine of the Massachusets Divorce Law Montior offers these five simple tax tips:

  • Child support is not tax deductible. If you pay the child support, you pay the taxes.
  • Alimony is tax deductible to the payor, and taxable to the payee.
  • Property settlement, or property transfers, pursuant to a divorce decree are not taxable. However, as Attorney Van Tine points out, this is only true for opposite sex marriages. Same sex marraiges have different rules as Attorney Van Tine blogged about here.
  • Transfers of pensions can be transferred without any tax consquences through a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (again, only if your are in a opposite sex marriage).
  • The IRS has five tips for recently married or divorce taxpayers regading name changes.  

I would add to Attorney Van Tine’s list these tips:

  •  If you do not have a court order regarding the child tax credit, then you must follow the IRS rules. Specifically, the parent who has residential responsiblity and parenting time more than 50% of the time is entitled to claim the child.
  • If your divorce decree has not been issued prior to December 31st, you may file jointly or separately. However, if your divorce is final by December 31st, you cannot file jointly. Take a look at IRS Publication 504 for more information.