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Keep Close Records of Alimony Payments After Divorce

Alimony payments are usually tax deductible for the person making the payments and are considered taxable income for the person receiving it, so it is extremely important to keep close, detailed records whether you are paying or receiving it. It is common for spouses to dispute the amounts of alimony that were paid, or for the Internal Revenue Service to challenge those payments.

If you do not have records of these payments, you could lose your deduction or forfeit some of the money you were paid.

The alimony payer

If you are paying alimony, you should have the following records in your files:

  • Receipts for any payments you made in cash, signed by the alimony recipient
  • A list detailing every payment you’ve made, including the date, check number and recipient address
  • Originals for any checks you wrote for your payments, kept in a locked file or safe deposit box with the month of each payment written on them

In general, you should keep all this information for at least three years after you file your tax return on which you’ve deducted those payments.

The alimony recipient

If you are receiving alimony, you should have the following records in your files:

  • The dates on which you received payments and the amount received
  • Check numbers or other identifying information for all payments
  • Names of banks on which the check or money order was drawn
  • Account number for checks written
  • Photocopies of checks or money orders
  • Copies of signed receipts you make for payments received in cash

For more information and guidance on this and other issues related to alimony, speak with an experienced Minnesota divorce lawyer at Appelhof, Pfeifer & Hart, P.A.

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  • "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.

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