The rule for alimony reporting has drastically changed.
Deductions for alimony orders established after December 31, 2018 have been eliminated.
Recipients of alimony are no longer required to report the income on the tax return.
For tax years 2018 and prior:
Alimony payments received from your spouse or former spouse are taxable to you in the year you receive them. Because no taxes are withheld from alimony payments, you may need to make estimated tax payments or increase the amount withheld from your paycheck.
You can enter the amount of alimony you received as income by selecting:
- Federal Section
- Income Menu
- Alimony Received
Alimony payments made under a divorce or separation instrument are deductible if certain requirements are met. Any payments not required by such a decree or agreement do not qualify as deductible alimony payments. Child support you pay is never deductible. Child support you receive is not taxable.
To report the amount of alimony you paid:
- Federal Section
- Alimony Paid
Alimony does not include the following:
- non-cash property settlements
- payments that are your spouse's part of community income
- use of the payer's property
If you paid or received alimony you must use Form 1040. You cannot use Form 1040A or Form 1040EZ. When using our program, we will automatically select the appropriate form to fit your specific return. If you received alimony, you must give the person who paid the alimony your social security number or you may have to pay a $50 penalty.
For more information, including rules for divorces and separations before 1985, get Publication 504, Divorced or Separated Individuals, available on the IRS Web site at IRS.gov or by calling 800-TAX-FORM (800-829-3676).