Tax Issues for Divorcing Couples

Course Description:

Although exact figures are hard to define, it is generally accepted that between 40 and 50 percent of first marriages in the U.S. end in divorce. The rate is even higher for second and third marriages. As a result, divorce and tax-related divorce issues are becoming more and more prevalent in the operations of tax practices throughout the nation. 

This course is aimed at helping tax professionals understand their role with regard to divorcing clients and how to protect themselves as well as the rights of their clients as they go through the stages of a divorce. By asking the right questions, tax professionals will be able to properly assess the situation of divorcing couples and determine the best tax situation to obtain the lowest legal tax liability.

Among the topics discussed in this course are:  

  • the tax professional’s role and responsibilities with divorcing clients
  • key tax implications of divorce
  • alimony and property transfers
  • innocent and injured spouses
  • impact of divorce on same-sex couples

Learning Objectives

After completing this course, students will be able to:

  • determine when a couple is divorced according to the IRS regulations
  • identify the correct filing status for taxpayers with dependents, including in cases where the dependency exemption has been released to the noncustodial spouse
  • identify payments that qualify as alimony and the associated reporting requirements by both spouses
  • identify the conditions that must be met for the transfer or property between spouses incident to a divorce to qualify as a tax-free exchange under IRS § 1041
  • identify the underlying principles of Innocent Spouse and Injured Spouse relief and recognize the differences between the two
Tax Year: 2018
Prerequisites:  None
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