Though you might be frustrated and unhappy in your marriage, there may be some issues that have you wondering if it might be better for you to stay together rather than file for divorce. One of these, changes to the way spousal support will be taxed, may have you considering other options. The changes make spousal support tax-deductible for the recipient and taxable income for the payer.
A Michigan man, one of the United States' most wanted child support "deadbeats" has just been caught in Calgary, Alberta. Joseph Stroup, who was living in Alberta under the assumed name "Joop Cousteau," was caught by a Calgary restaurant owner when he seemed to be running a personal injury scam.
If you or your spouse has a pension, 401(k) plan or IRA, you will need to divide them in the event of a divorce. You can agree to divide these as part of your settlement, or a judge can divide them if your divorce goes to trial. In order for the division to be binding on the plans, however, you will need a qualified domestic relations order (QDRO).
In most cases, Michigan law officially favors child custody and parenting arrangements that promote a strong bond with both parents. That doesn't mean that every child custody and parenting order will split the child's time 50/50 between the parents, as there are often other factors to take into consideration. Still, children are generally better off spending lots of time with each parent.
Whether you settle or go to trial, a divorce is a legal proceeding. That means that each party has a legal duty to honestly and fully disclose all information material to the case. That includes being honest about your assets and debts. Unfortunately, as many as a third of U.S. adults who have combined assets with a spouse or partner admit they have been dishonest about money.
Many divorces are settled, but if you can't resolve all of your issues between yourselves, you can have a judge resolve them for you. If you do go to trial, preparation and etiquette are key. Their lack could cost you in terms of credibility and even affect your settlement.
The recent tax law, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, changed the federal deductibility of alimony. In divorces finalized during 2018, alimony is tax-deductible for the payor and taxable income for the recipient. On Jan. 1, 2019, however, the new tax law changes that. For divorces finalized after that date, alimony will be neither tax-deductible nor taxable income. This applies to all payments the IRS considers alimony.