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FAMILY LAW - Taxes, Divorce Decrees & Retirement Accounts

Posted by T. Jake HinkinsMay 29, 20190 Comments

Taxes on Alimony and Child Support
In one of our case mediations, a question came up whether the spouse who is receiving child support and alimony will have to pay taxes on that money. As of 2019, alimony is no longer taxable to the person receiving it in the state of Utah. The person paying alimony pays as a post-tax payment on that and also pays the tax on child support. It's important for those receiving and paying to understand the tax implications.

Spouse Refuses to Sign a Final Divorce Decree
Here are a couple of things to consider: First, if the parties settle the case through a stipulation and one spouse will not sign the divorce decree, the other spouse can file a motion to enforce the settlement agreement. The court can then enforce that settlement agreement and finalize the divorce. Second, if there isn't a stipulation or settlement, you can still push the case through to a trial. If one spouse refuses to respond, unfortunately, it does become more difficult and time consuming to resolve until a divorce decree is in place.

Splitting Retirement Accounts in Divorce
An issue that comes up from time to time is whether a spouse will receive a fair share of their spouse's retirement account in a divorce. This is one of the subtlest pieces of law in Utah. Basically, you split the amount that has accrued during the course of the marriage. This is done through a qualified domestic relations order, or QUADRO, as it's often referred to, which takes the one account and splits it into two different accounts. This way, there are no immediate tax implications, and both spouses will keep them as their own retirement accounts continuing forward.