Under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, most Americans are eligible for a one-time stimulus check (also called Economic Impact Payment) of up to $1,200, with married couples getting up to $2,400. Families will get an additional $500 per child. We previously discussed the individual payments in Part 1 of our Series. So what about the child’s portion of the stimulus payment? How does your divorce affect that payment?
The new law seems to state that the child’s stimulus payment will be paid to the parent that claimed the child as a dependent on his/her tax return last year. There are various complications with that concept, such as what if the parties filed a joint return last year and are now in the process of, or have completed, a divorce? What happens if, in the divorce proceeding, or thereafter, it was agreed that the dependency exemption would be alternated? The answer is not an easy one and may require the assistance of an attorney to answer this question The legislation seems to indicate that the children’s portion of the stimulus will be paid to the parent who claimed the child as a dependent on the last tax return, however, that may not agree with the terms of a divorce decree.
It is imperative that you discuss this matter with an attorney if you and your spouse cannot agree. If you are currently involved, or have been involved, in a family law case, it is important to get legal advice regarding this issue. For any questions or concerns related to this topic, please contact Shannon Simpson at Simpson Legal Group, LLC at (712) 256-9899.