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Proposed tax change could make divorce more expensive

Family law is one area of the legal field that tends to remain fairly consistent. While other legal realms such as criminal law are subject to change with the enactment of new statutes or the rulings of higher courts, family law rarely sees these significant changes. However, sometimes changes that may seem unrelated to divorce can actually wind up having a major impact on those who are considering marriage dissolution.

To see one example, one need look no further than the recently proposed tax bill in Congress. That bill contains a section that would disallow individuals from deducting alimony payments. The way federal law stands now, each dollar of alimony paid reduces one's taxable income by a dollar. The proposed legislation, though, would disallow this from occurring, which could mean that those who pay alimony could face a significant financial hit.

This proposed change could be problematic on many fronts. In addition to increasing one's tax bill, it could also increase fees associated with divorce, as couples that may once have agreed on alimony may now be more hesitant to do so for fear of tax consequences. This, in turn, can lead to divorce processes that are longer and thereby result in increased stress and emotional hardship.

Fortunately, this bill is not yet law. But this example highlights why it important for those who are considering divorce to stay up to date with current changes in the law. This is where the assistance of a skilled family law attorney may prove beneficial. Thus, those who have questions about spousal support or other divorce legal issues, such as child custody, child support, and property division, should consider reaching out to a lawyer of their choosing.

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