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Can my divorce attorney help me with the tax implications of divorce?

New York, NY |

Or do I need to hire another expert to help me with it?

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Attorney answers 8


This is a tough question without more facts. It is unclear if your divorce attorney is competent in the area of taxation. You should discuss this with him or her and ask them if they feel comfortable with the tax issues of your case, or should you hire a tax attorney to cover those areas.

Any individual seeking legal advice for their own situation should retain their own legal counsel as this response provides information that is general in nature and not specific to any person's unique situation. Circular 230 Disclaimer - Advice given in this response cannot be used to eliminate penalties with the IRS or any other governmental agency.


You should certainly speak to an accountant I'm conjunction with your attorney. Make sure you feel comfortable with your level of understanding as to all issues. Good luck.

I have been a criminal defense attorney in New York for over 20 years. Feel free to view my website at or contact me either by phone at 718-208-6094 or via email at This answer is only for informational purposes and is not meant as legal advice.


You need a tax attorney or good CPA expert. Appreciated, but yet taxed assets are a major problem at divorce. Taking half of the assets by the terms of their current market value may not reflect the tax load from appreciation. Different assets are taxed differently. That is just one reason to have an expert.

Curt Harrington Patent & Tax Law Attorney Certified Tax Specialist by the California Board of Legal Specialization PATENTAX.COM This communication is general information and not legal advice, and does not create an attorney-client relationship. This communication should not be relied upon as any type of legal advice. Please note that no attorney-client relationship exists between the sender and the recipient of this message in the absence of either (1) a signed fee contract and (2) remission of an agreed-upon retainer. Absent such an agreement and retainer, I am not engaged by you as an attorney, nor is any other member of my law firm.


The question does not indicate the tax knowledge of the divorce attorney. I would suggest seeking the advice of a certified public accountant that practices in the area of taxation or a tax attorney.


Some can -- Some can't. I personally think you are better off, hiring a tax specialist which may or may not be an attorney.


It depends completely upon the complexity of the tax implications. If you are wondering about things like the whether you should alternate years for claiming children as dependents and/or if you pay your former spouse's health insurance premium can you deduct it as "spousal support", your divorce attorney can probably help you with those issues. If you need to know the tax implications of dividing business assets, retirement plans, and complex investments, it would be foolish to expect anyone other than a skilled tax professional to give you the best advice. If you already have an attorney helping you with your divorce, ask them if you need a referral to a tax professional--if it hasn't come up yet, you probably don't, but check just in case. If you don't have an attorney yet, you can search among the attorney profiles here on AVVO to find someone, and then go from there. Good luck!

Ms. Brown may be reached at 718-878-6886 during regular business hours, or anytime by email at: All of Ms. Brown’s responses to questions posted on AVVO are intended as general information based upon the facts stated in the question, and are provided for educational purposes of the public, not any specific individual, and her response to the question above is not legal advice and it does not create an attorney-client relationship. Ms. Brown is licensed to practice law in New York. If you would like to obtain specific legal advice about this issue, you must contact an attorney who is licensed to practice law in your state.


Your attorney should know the tax issues involved in a matrimonial case. For example maintenance is tax deductible for the payor and income to the payee. Distribution of assets are more complicated. After your attorney advises you of the tax issues which may affect you, your attorney should refer you over to an accountant or tax attorney familiar with taxation and Divorce issues.


While your Divorce Lawyer should be able to answer certain basic tax questions as they relate to matrimonial law, unless your attorney is also a licensed accountant, you should always consult an accountant for concrete answers regaridng your particular financial situation.

Mary Katherine Brown

Mary Katherine Brown


As always, the highest regard should be given to the information provided by your local attorneys.

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