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Preparing to File Taxes Following Your Divorce

(Last Updated On: July 17, 2015)

Taxes and Divorce

Taxes and divorce can be tricky if not done properly. Filing taxes may be the last thing on your mind if you’re going through divorce, but you do need to figure out which filing status to choose.

You and your ex-spouse also need to determine who can claim tax exemptions for your kids and how payments to an ex-spouse should be treated for tax purposes.

You and your ex-spouse have a number of options when it comes to choosing a filing status, so it’s a good idea to discuss your tax preparation with a Tucson family law attorney.

 

Filing Status

If you and your spouse are splitting up, but have not filed for divorce by the end of the year, you have the option of filing a joint tax return.

Alternatively, you can also file as married, but filing separately.

When your divorce decree becomes final, you no longer have the joint return option for that year. As a result, your marital status as of December 31 of that year determines your filing status for the entire year.

 

Exemptions

As long as your child has lived with you for a longer period of time during the year than with your ex-spouse, you can still claim him or her as a dependent.

In this situation, you are considered the custodial parent.

However, if you sign a waiver pledging you won’t claim your child, then your ex-spouse may be able to claim the exemption as a non-custodial parent.

 

Tax Credits

If you are the parent claiming the dependent exemption, then you can also claim the child credit up to $1,000 and the American Opportunity higher education credit up to $2,500.

However, if you can’t claim the child dependent exemption, you cannot claim these tax credits.

If you are the custodial parent, you can continue to claim the childcare credit for work-related expenses you incur.


At Thrush Law Group, our Tucson family law attorneys treat every family law case with the caring, personal attention a family deserves.

We understand that family law is a dynamic area, dealing with divorce, custody, business, and property division issues.

Posted in Arizona, Phoenix, Tucson.