Just because you got divorced from your spouse doesn't mean that all your taxes are also totally divorced from each other's.
Not only do you have to show your taxes to each other for purposes of calculcating child support, there are a number of other instances where tax issues associated with a divorce might come up.
One of these is on the question of deductions after divorce. Below is a list of the important deductions along with some explanation:
Deduction for Dependents:
In general, the parent with child custody will claim the dependency deduction. This issue may have been addressed in the divorce decree, however, and both parties must follow the provisions of the court's decree. In some cases, parents can alternate deduction years.
Deduction for Alimony or Spousal Maintenance:
The supporting spouse may deduct the money paid for spousal maintenance, or alimony. The spouse or former spouse receiving the alimony must include it as income on his or her tax return. If you made a non-cash property settlement in payments or as a lump sum for the benefit of the other party, then that is not deductible spousal support for federal income tax purposes.
No Deduction for Child Support:
Child support payments are never deductible. If you are paying child support and spousal maintenance, and you didn't satisfy your total obligation, then the IRS requires that you account for the child support first.
Deduction for Mortgage Interest:
Who can claim the home mortgage interest deduction may also have been addressed in your final divorce decree. If it was not, then this needs to be discussed with your former spouse because you cannot both claim the entire amount on your respective returns. The mortgage deduction goes to the person who paid the mortgage and interest out of his or her separate funds.
As you can see, taxes after a divorce are complicated matters with long term consequences. And so when you are working out your divorce decree you should make sure that your family law attorney is conversant in tax issues.