You may be making spousal maintenance payments to a soon-to-be former spouse or already divorced partner. Did you know that such payments can be claimed as a deduction on income in your income tax return?

Alternatively, you might perhaps be receiving pre-divorce spousal support or alimony following your marital dissolution. Were you aware that incoming money earmarked for that purpose is regarded by the Internal Revenue Service as taxable income?

There is a lot to learn about alimony, which many currently married or ex-spouses find out when it is sought to be applied to their personal situation.

For instance, many Pennsylvania residents might not know that relevant state statutory law provides for multiple types of spousal support, with special parameters applicable to specific situations. Spousal support applies to payments following marital separation but prior to divorce. Alimony pendent lite covers a temporary payment arrangement following a divorce filing but preceding a final dissolution decree.

And then, of course, there is alimony, which applies post-divorce. As noted in an article discussing this legal remedy in Pennsylvania, a state judge must consider a number of enumerated factors pursuant to reaching a decision on alimony payments and duration.

Modifying an alimony order can also entail some complexities, including judicial consideration of the relative significance — or lack thereof — of one or more changes in either a payer’s or recipient’s life.

The close and studied input of a proven family law attorney well-versed in support matters can be instrumental in an alimony outcome, across a wide spectrum of considerations that include support type, payment amounts, duration and modified circumstances.

Source:, “Understanding and calculating alimony in Pennsylvania,” Melissa  Tapply, accessed Aug. 5, 2014