When is Spousal Maintenance Appropriate?

When you’re stuck in a marriage you no longer want to be in, it can be easy to feel trapped, especially if your spouse is the primary breadwinner for your family. Even when divorce seems like a reasonable choice from an emotional standpoint, the potential expenses (such as legal fees), on top of the loss of shared income and marital property, can be a massive deterrent against seeking separation from your partner.  This is exactly why the law of equitable distribution, child support and spousal maintenance were created.

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Spousal Support Shift Under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act

President Donald Trump promised hefty tax changes prior to his inauguration. One substantial tax change under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act concerned the deductibility of spousal support.

Prior to the enactment of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA), those receiving spousal support (alimony) were forced to claim the proceeds as taxable income, while those paying the alimony were allowed to deduct the payments from their taxes. However, under the new statute, it is reversed. Now, those that are receiving the alimony are able to deduct the alimony given by their former spouse from their taxes, while those paying the alimony will have to include it on their taxes. The change becomes effective after December 31, 2018.
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