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Is a one time lump sum alimony tax deductible?

Palo Alto, CA |

Court has not granted the divorce yet but I paid a one time lump sum alimony of $75K in 2012 according to a written agreement with my wife. Can I deduct this for 2012 even though court has not finalized the divorce yet? Can we both file together as 'Married' and still deduct this $75K alimony ?

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Filed under: Divorce Alimony Tax law
Attorney answers 3

Best Answer

The answer to your question really depends on what your agreement says. Spousal support is deductible if it is spousal support and meets certain criteria set forth in the IRS rules. An equalization payment is not tax deductible. I strongly suggest that you speak to your your lawyer to make sure that the proper language was included in your Judgment so that it is tax deductible. It might also be a good idea to read IRS Publication 504: Good luck.

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Edna Carroll Straus

Edna Carroll Straus


Better yet get a TAX attorney. I had a mediation go litigated-- H had MAJOR bucks. (The settlement had a lump sum payment prior to going litigated but we had characterized it as a division of CP. A BIG lump sum.) He hired a CERTIFIED Family Law attorney. Now he is in hot water with the IRS and there is a malpractice suit pending. The IRS took penalties off the table as H acted on advice of counsel. TAX ATTORNEY,


Alimony is deductible. However, this sounds more like a property settlement, which is not deductible.

This answer does not establish an attorney-client relationship, Moreover, this attorney is Licensed to practiced law ONLY in LOUISIANA and answers to questions from other jurisdictions or states are meant to provide only general information. Users should contact a local attorney in their jurisdiction or state.



Hi..Can you please let me know the difference between property settlement and alimony?


You need to get advise from a tax attorney.

Ms. Straus (aka Carroll) may be reached at 800-400-8978 during regular business hours, Pacific Time, or anytime by email at: All of Ms. Straus’ responses to questions posted on Avvo are intended as helpful information based upon the facts stated in the question, and are not to be relied upon as a final legal opinion. It may not be what you wished to hear, and it does not create an attorney-client relationship. Ms. Straus is licensed to practice law in California. 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, and retain him or her. Me Straus provides “unbundled” services if you need specific assistance with a specific issue.

Edna Carroll Straus

Edna Carroll Straus


I mean advice.

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