Are you wondering how your divorce could affect your upcoming tax return? Below are answers to some frequently asked questions we receive related to how divorce affects taxes:
Q: My spouse and I have been separated for months. Can we file as single people?
You can only file as single if you are legally divorced. You may file under the tax status “married filing separately,” although “married filing jointly” could be more advantageous to you financially.
Q: I am a divorced parent who pays child support. My children live with their other parent. Can I claim head of household on my taxes?
No. Your children must live with you for more than half of the year for you to be able to claim head of household status on your taxes.
Q: Am I unable to qualify as a head of a household if my ex-spouse claims the child as an exemption?
You may file as the head of the household, even if you do not claim your dependent child as an exemption, so long as you meet three requirements. First, you must be unmarried or considered unmarried as of the final day of the year. Second, you must have paid more than half the cost of upkeep for your home for that year. Finally, your qualifying child must have lived with you in the home for more than half the year, barring temporary absences for school or other similar reasons.
Q: Are my former spouse and I allowed to split the dependent exemption, each claiming it for six months?
No. However, you may take that exemption in alternating years. IRS dictate that the primary custodial parent (parent that has the child living with them more than half the year) claims the exemption. But is very common for parents to alternate the exemption to acknowledge that both parents are contributing financially to the child’s upbringing.
If you have additional questions about how your divorce could affect your taxes, speak with a knowledgeable Minnesota divorce lawyer at Appelhof, Pfeifer & Hart, P.A.
"Tori had a thorough understanding of my situation and made excellent recommendations to resolve my concerns. She was persistent on communication and handled everything in a very timely manner. I would definitely hire her again in the future if needed." - M.K.
"With Appelhof, Pfeifer & Hart, P.A., it is like having a family physician. They are all knowledgeable, thorough, comforting, and the only call I need to make for all my legal needs for many years to come. No matter what the matter, I totally trust their advice and commitment to me and my family." - J.N.
"Mary from APH Law helped me thru a difficult divorce. She and the entire staff was there for me every step of the way helping me on what to do next. They listened to what I wanted and helped me achieve what matter the most to me in the divorce settlement." - Dana C.
"I chose APH after my initial consultation with Mary. I felt my best interest would be represented. The entire process went excellent, the attorneys and staff communicated effectively and efficiently with me throughout the process as they needed to. Being new to the legal process and verbiage, they walked me and talked me through the next steps and the jargon, I felt completely comfortable and represented. I hope I never have to use legal services again but if I do I will call Mary at APH Law and know that I will be taken care of." - Jeff M.
"Divorce is a time of emotion and stress. Mary Pfeifer , My lawyer was professional and compassionate. She was very informative through the process. Her insight helped me in my decisions. She worked hard to obtain a settlement which was fair to both parties. Though, I hope I won't need her help again. It is reassuring to know a good person that is willing to help." - Rod S.
"I first came to Ms. Jacquelyn Lutz of Appelhof, Pfeifer and Hart in October of 2016. It was definitely the worst time in my life and she compassionately spoke with me about my options. Ms. Lutz thoroughly explained the laws, statutes, process and what to expect going forward. What was supposed to be one case, turned into three intricate cases that took a huge toll on me and my family. Ms. Lutz represented me in court on all three cases with a vast knowledge of the laws and how to proceed accordingly. During all three cases she kept me informed, calm, gave me resources to utilize, and (most important) gave me a realistic view of what may come next. Ms. Lutz knew each case required a great deal of knowledge and creative thinking on how to legally proceed forward with each case. My family and friends are forever grateful for the amazing representation by Ms. Lutz. I highly recommend Ms. Lutz for anyone needing or considering superb representation for any kind of family law. " - M.H.