Earlier this week, we discussed some options individuals have when filing their taxes for 2010 if they were divorced after Dec. 31, 2010. Individuals who signed their divorce decree or were legally separated on Jan. 1, 2011 or after can either file their 2010 taxes jointly with their ex-spouse or as married filing separately. We discussed the pros and cons of each situation, and hopefully we have been able to clear up some confusion for individuals this tax season. Today, we will discuss some tax tips for individuals who were legally separated or divorced on or before Dec. 31, 2010.
If you were legally separated or divorced before the end of 2010, then you are able to file your taxes as a single person without any penalties this tax season. However, before you claim your tax breaks, you should review your divorce settlement in order to see which tax breaks you are an eligible claim.
If you have children and you are the primary caregiver, then you should be eligible to claim the Head of Household status. You may also be eligible to claim the Child Tax Credit and Child and Dependent Credit. If you share custody with your ex-spouse, then the divorce agreement should state who is eligible to claim Head of Household status and other tax credits regarding your offspring.
An important thing to remember about child support is that the IRS does not tax this money. However, the government does consider spousal support as income. If you receive spousal support, be prepared to pay taxes on the amount you receive. Individuals are always encouraged to speak with an accountant in order to ensure that taxes are prepared correctly and so that individuals can receive their maximum refund or minimize the amount that is owed to the IRS.
Divorce attorneys in Illinois understand that this tax season may be especially stressful for those who were recently divorced or legally separated in 2010. Newly divorced individuals may just be realizing that divorce not only affects them emotionally, but it also affects them financially. However, there are many other individuals in Illinois who are just as confused and have similar questions about divorce and finances, and the Burch Law Firm hopes to help those individuals find the answers they need.