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What are tax implications of divorce?

If you're getting divorced, there are many things that you will be trying to sort through. Being able to sit down and sort out the particulars of moving on can be quite difficult, but you may be saving yourself a great headache later on by biting the bullet and doing it now. One of the most important things to discuss are the tax implications of a divorce, which can vary widely from marriage, depending on how complex your assets are and whether or not their are dependent children to be considered.

In broad terms, regardless of how long you've been married or what your assets and liabilities may be, filing for divorce will almost certainly impact how you file your taxes for the last year of your marriage. The most direct way that this can effect you is if one party files separately, while the other party files jointly. This kind of discrepancy is highly likely to draw the scrutiny from the IRS. No one wants to be audited, and there's no reason that you have to be — provided that you can be civil and have a conversation about taxes with your soon-to-be ex.

The other big issue to consider when divorcing is who will be claiming children as defendants. The IRS has rules that can help you determine who should claim a child if you and your spouse are not able to come to any agreement, but if you will be sharing joint custody, it is common for spouses to agree to trade years claiming the children and taking the associated tax exemptions. Whatever you decide, it's vital that both of you claim compatible statuses.

These are only the most basic issues that may effect a couple who are divorcing when it comes time to file for taxes. Divorce can be a trying time, but the guidance of an experienced attorney can help you walk through this difficult season with dignity and set yourself up for success on the other side.

Source: findlaw, "Getting a Divorce? Top 3 Tax Tips to Consider," accessed Dec. 01, 2016

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