When a couple gets divorced, their tax situation changes with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Often, this creates a difficult situation for one of the spouses. It seems there is always one spouse more familiar with filing the tax returns than the other.
If you were a spouse who did not know much about your financial situation, you seriously need to find a tax preparer who can help you understand the tax implications of child custody, child support, and spousal support.
How to Find a Tax Preparer
There are a few ways you can find a tax preparer who you can trust:
- If you went through the Collaborative Divorce process, you can ask the financial professional who helped you through that for a recommendation.
- Ask your divorce attorney to recommend someone for you.
- Ask your friends for a recommendation for CPA to help file your first tax return post-divorce.
How a Tax Preparer Can Help
This will be an educational experience for you. The professional will go over the previous year’s tax return with you to identify sources of income, like you and your spouse’s W2 wages, interest from investment income, dividends, and capital gains from stocks. It may also help you identify debts.
When a couple gets a divorce, they need to consider the ways the divorce will affect their tax situations with the IRS. Child custody, child support, and alimony all have tax implications. Legal counsel is advised to help with knowing how to comply with the complex and frequently changing IRS Code.
Here are just a few issues that need to be considered:
- Which parent will be able to file as head of household?
- Which parent will claim the children as dependents, including those who are over 18 but are still in college?
- How have the exemptions changed since you are no longer married?
- The person paying child support or spousal support may not deduct that amount from their taxes.
- The person receiving child support or spousal support is not required to claim that amount as income on their tax return.
For more information, and to get assistance with preparing your tax return after your divorce, contact us at Heberger & Company, An Accountancy Corporation and schedule a consultation.