Alimony payments are deducted from your taxable income, which lowers the amount you are taxed on as long as you meet the following requirements:
- You pay by cash, check, or money order.
- Your spouse doesn’t live in the same house.
- Payments made after your ex dies or remarries aren’t counted, as you aren’t required to pay these.
- The payments must be for alimony only, and not counted toward child support.
If you’re the recipient of alimony payments, you are required to report them as income. You’ll need to provide your ex with your Social Security Number, so they are able to claim the payments. If you don’t provide your ex with your number, you may be subject to a $50 fine from the IRS.
Child support payments don’t have as much impact on your taxes quite like alimony does.
You aren’t required to report or deduct child support; however, you may be able to claim the child as a dependent if you pay child support. There are no tax breaks related to support payments, however since you are technically supporting the child, even partly, you may be able to claim the child as a dependent.