While no two divorces are identical, they all have one thing in common: they are complicated and stressful. Experts suggest that the only event more stressful than divorce is experiencing the death of a spouse or a child. Even if you and your spouse experience an amicable, mutual separation, and there are only minor disagreements, the process itself is made up of many legal facets that must be resolved before it can be finalized. From child-rearing to finances, the division of a marriage into two separate lives can become troublesome. As if that were not enough, some brand-new divorce laws become effective as of January 1, 2019.
If you are considering divorce now or in the future, these new laws may affect your situation:
Spousal Maintenance Will No Longer Be Tax Deductible
Before 2019, spouses ordered to pay spousal maintenance or alimony were given a substantial deduction during tax season. This deduction often eased the sting of a monthly payment. Experts believe that now, spouses may argue to pay less in alimony as a result.
Spousal Maintenance Is No Longer Taxable Income
For the spousal maintenance recipient, the money received no longer contributes to the amount of taxable income that must be reported. Since the spouse awarded alimony is the lesser-earning spouse, the taxes on these payments were a hardship for many, especially since most divorcees experience a noticeable drop in their overall expendable income. Maintenance recipients may be able to receive a higher overall alimony payment going forward with the removal of the tax burden.
The Grandfather Clause
Previously divorced couples should pay close attention to the wording of any potential modification requests starting in 2019. Any modifications may be subjected to the new laws and regulations, particularly if the amendment denotes the application of the new rules. Legally, if no mention is made regarding the legal changes, the old rules will still apply.
Prenuptial and Postnuptial Agreements
The new laws apply to Pre and Post Nuptial Agreements, as well. Therefore, to ensure that your wishes remain intact, you should have your documents reviewed by an experienced family law attorney.
Ask a Naperville Family Lawyer
If you are considering divorce in 2019 or feel that the new laws may affect your current divorce orders, a DuPage County divorce attorney can answer any questions you may have. The proven lawyers at Goostree Law Group understand the stress of divorce, and we will use our knowledge and experience to guide you through the process. We have proudly served families just like yours for the last 15 years. Find out how we can help you by calling our office today at 630-364-4046 to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation.