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Texas Divorce and Prenuptial Agreement

4550 Post Oak Place, Suite 201 • Houston, Texas 77027-3139

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

IRS Wants to Know the Date Your Divorce Became Final

Like most years, 2011 saw its fair share of celebrity divorces – Russell Brand and Katy Perry (Brand filed just before the end of the year on December 30), Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Maria Shriver, and Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher, to name a handful. What all of these divorces have in common is that the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) will consider each couple married for all of 2011.

When it comes to federal taxes, the IRS determines your single or married status by looking at your status on the last day of the year, December 31. If your divorce was final on or before December 31, the IRS considers you and your spouse single for the entire year. If you separated from your spouse or filed from divorce, but the divorce was not final on or before December 31 (the situation that all of these celebrity couples find themselves in), the IRS considers you and your spouse married for the entire year.

The waiting period plays an important role, thus, in when your divorce counts for tax purposes. Celebrity couples often divorce in California, which, like many states, has a waiting period between when a spouse files for a divorce and when the divorce becomes final. California’s waiting period is six months, while Texas’s is just 60 days. States range from having no waiting period at all to making a couple wait a year or longer to finalize their divorce.

Have tax considerations played a role in when you finalized your divorce?

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

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