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Florida Family Law

Child Support, Alimony and Taxes in Florida

Posted on January 15, 2016

Child support is not taxable in Florida as income—alimony on the other hand may have some tax benefits.  The individual paying alimony in Florida may receive tax benefits for paying this alimony; however the recipient does not and must report this money as income.

Be wary of the attorney that seeks to put a clause in a settlement agreement, which purports to circumvent the tax liability surrounding alimony. Also, if you are the recipient of alimony, do not be swayed by statements by another party which may lead you to believe that alimony does not have to be reported on your taxes. The last thing you want to deal with when you were dealing with a divorce, is tax fraud.

Every case is different, so you must be careful when looking at child support and alimony calculations in a divorce. Some attorneys may want to minimize the amount of alimony, while maximizing the amount of child support. If the case involves the husband paying alimony, the situation might be reversed – and his goal might be to pay more alimony and less child support.

Unfortunately, it is commonplace to find that family law attorneys do not do the appropriate calculations prior to going into settlement discussions or mediation or even trial. Discuss with your attorney the different scenarios involving both child support and alimony, and ask to see the child support guidelines worksheet that reflect those calculations. This will save you time and money in the long run, and help your attorney to focus on the goals that you desire.

The best way to get the most accurate information regarding possible tax liability and consequences, would of course be to speak with a tax attorney. Remember, most divorce attorneys will not give you tax advice, and will refer you to an accountant or a tax attorney. You may also want to review IRS Publication 504: Divorce or Separated Individuals.


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