Divorce can make the already complicated process of filing tax returns even more so, especially if there are children involved. Which parent is allowed to claim the child, or children, on their taxes? Ideally, divorced parents can work together, with a trusted Virginia divorce attorney or tax advisor, to determine the most advantageous solution for both parents.
Typically, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) assumes that the custodial parent, usually the mom, will claim the children on her tax return. The custodial parent can, if they choose, transfer the exemption to the other parent using IRS form 8332. Some parents choose to alternate years using the exemption. If there is more than one child, sometimes parents will split the exemptions between them. Neither option is good, strategically speaking.
Exemptions for children affect taxes differently depending upon the amount of income of the parent. As income levels rise, the benefit of the exemption decreases. If the father is the higher income earner, he may not receive much financial benefit, if any, by using an exemption on his taxes. The lower wage earner, on the other hand, could benefit much more if she can claim an exemption.
If you and your ex-husband can cooperate and work with a tax advisor, tax attorney or Virginia divorce attorney to figure out the different tax scenarios for claiming child care exemptions on your taxes, you will likely be able to maximize your refund. Perhaps you can offer your ex-husband a portion of the refund or an extra night with the kids in return for letting you claim the exemptions on your taxes.
Your Virginia divorce attorney can help you to fight for various terms of your Virginia divorce settlement, including issues of tax exemptions. To learn more about the importance of tax issues after divorce in Virginia, visit our article library.
Contacting a Virginia Divorce Attorney
At this vulnerable time, it’s critical that you have exceptional legal representation that not only understands the specifics of your case, but is dedicated to your best interests and those of your family.
The Virginia divorce attorney team at Hofheimer Family Law Firm represents Virginia women who wish to file for divorce. We are committed to fighting for your rights, assisting in child custody disputes, and advocating that you receive everything you are entitled to and need in order to start your new life. You can learn more by requesting a FREE copy of our guide, What Every Virginia Woman Should Know About Divorce, or reserving your seat at our monthly divorce seminar – 757-425-5200.