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Texas Divorce and Prenuptial Agreement

5005 Riverway Drive, Suite 450 • Houston, Texas 77056

Phone: 713-877-8800 • Fax: 713-877-1229

Alimony Has Tax Consequences for Recipient and Payor

When a court awards alimony (also called spousal support or spousal maintenance), this has tax consequences for both spouses. For the spouse receiving the alimony, he or she must report that as income for tax purposes. For the spouse paying the alimony, he or she is able to deduct those payments, but only if the payments meet the following Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) requirements:

  • You cannot file a joint return with your ex-spouse
  • You must pay the alimony in the form of cash, check or money order
  • Your ex-spouse has to receive your payment
  • The divorce decree must not state that your payment should not be considered alimony payment
  • If you and your ex-spouse have already formally separated, you cannot be living in the same household
  • You cannot be making the payment after the death of your ex-spouse
  • Your alimony payment cannot be treated as child support or property settlement (both child support and property settlements are not deductible)

In addition to child support and property settlements, other examples of payments that would not qualify as alimony include:

  • Payments that come from community property (this is all assets that a couple acquires during the course of their marriage; these assets belong to both spouses, so it is not proper to use your ex-spouse’s own money as a source of alimony payments)
  • Voluntary payments (those that your divorce decree does not require)

Have you had any problems regarding taxes and alimony payments?

John K. Grubb & Associates, P.C. – Houston divorce attorneys

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