Marriages fail for a variety of reasons. However, with the help of a tenacious attorney, you can rebuild your life. Divorce is one option. However, depending on the circumstances of your marriage, you may go through a contested or uncontested divorce.
I am Considering Divorce. Is Legal Separation an Option?
While an uncontested divorce is quick and cost effective, a contested divorce can last weeks and even months. For some people, separation is a better option. At first glance, legal separation looks a lot like divorce. You live in a different location from your spouse and you determine who gets custody of your children. However, on paper, you are still legally married. We’ve written about the different between divorce and legal separation on this page, this page, and this page.
Below are the benefits of separation:
- Possibility of reconciliation. First, separation may be the right choice for you and your spouse if you are having problems but feel that divorce is too permanent. Separation allows you to reconcile with your spouse if after a period you are able to work things out.
- Tax benefits. Since you are still legally married, you can continue to file your income taxes as a married couple.
- Religious benefits. Separation is also the right choice for you if you or your spouse practices a religion that does not approve of divorce.
- Insurance benefits. Lastly, separation is a good choice if a couple would like to retain employer-based health insurance benefits.
Legal separation may be the first step toward reconciliation or toward ending a marriage. Either way, though, you need an experienced and committed attorney who can advise you and protect your best interests throughout the process.
Alimony Tax Changes Could Make Divorces More Difficult
Figuring out alimony has never been a simple task for divorce attorneys. Alimony arrangements often become the subject of dispute during the divorce negotiation process. The new tax regulations signed into law by President Donald Trump in December could make determining alimony arrangements even more difficult.
For the past several decades, the rules with regard to alimony taxation were clear. Payers could deduct these payments from their taxes, while recipients were responsible for paying taxes on any payments received.
The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act makes significant changes to these rules. Now, in all divorces finalized after December 31, 2018, those paying alimony will no longer be able to deduct those payments on their taxes. And, individuals receiving alimony will no longer have to pay taxes on that money.
Effect of the tax changes in Divorce
It has only been a couple months since the bill was signed into law, and attorneys are still working to adjust and determine how their negotiation tactics will need to change.
The greatest expected impact of these changes is that settlement negotiations could become more complicated. Now that there is much more financial disparity at stake in alimony arrangements, those involved in a divorce may be much less willing to compromise with regard to spousal support issues.
Proponents of the changes say it levels the playing field between divorced and married couples, as some divorced individuals had benefited from tax breaks to which married couples did not have access.
Free Consultation with Divorce Lawyer in Utah
If you have a question about divorce law or if you need to start or defend against a divorce case in Utah call Ascent Law at (801) 676-5506. We will fight for you.
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States
Telephone: (801) 676-5506