Because of the new tax law, the tax implications for spousal support (alimony) will change if your divorce is granted in 2019 versus 2018. If your divorced is finalized in 2018, then your alimony payment can be tax deductible for the person paying it and taxable as income to the person receiving the alimony. This current rule was designed to encourage higher earners to pay alimony to their exes. However, for the current rule to apply, the divorce process cannot just be started in 2018 but must be finalized by the judge after everything is agreed upon by all of the parties.
If your divorce is finalized in 2019 the alimony payment is not tax deductible to the payer or taxable as income to the payee. Instead, the payer gets taxed on his/her whole income, including the alimony paid. As a result, s/he will have less money to pay towards alimony and the person receiving the alimony will likely receive much less, albeit tax-free.
So, if you have been hemming and hawing about your divorce for years and alimony will be an issue, you may want to consider getting moving with the process. I imagine the courts will get overcrowded towards the end of the year with people wanting to make sure to get divorced in 2018. And you want be on that court calendar sooner rather than later so your divorce can be finalized in 2018.
One of the fastest ways to move through the divorce process is by utilizing divorce mediation. At Westfield Mediation, LLC, we allow our clients to set the pace. Divorce mediation generally takes about 4-6 meetings from start to finish. And you schedule the meetings at your convenience. But the court has its own timeline as well, which may get backlogged as the end of the year approaches. There is still time to get divorced in 2018, but the window is closing fast.
For more information on alimony or divorce mediation, please contact Randi M. Albert, JD, or Michelle Weinberg, M. Ed., Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, at Westfield Mediation, LLC at 908.913.0373. View our website at www.westfieldnjmediation.com or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.