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IRS to Take a Closer Look at Alimony Payments

Posted on in IRS Scams

If you are currently receiving or paying alimony, the Internal Revenue Service has its sights on you. According to the Internal Revenue Service, it will soon begin devoting more time and focus to tax claims related to alimony.

Typically, tax laws require that spousal maintenance payments that are made by one spouse to the other be claimed as deductibles by the payer. The amount is also taxable for the recipient. Basically, the person who is paying the alimony can claim it as a deductible, while the person receiving the alimony must declare it as income on tax papers. However, the Internal Revenue Service does not believe that Americans are being totally honest about the alimony that they are receiving. It believes that there is a wide discrepancy between alimony deductibles and the alimony that is claimed as income.

Earlier this year, the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration released a report in which it identified that there was a very large gap between deductions for alimony by people making the payments, and the income claimed on returns. The report focused on about 570,000 income tax returns in tax year 2010. It found that the deductions for alimony paid exceeded the income from alimony by more than $2.3 million. Overall, the report found that 47% of the tax returns that were analyzed had some discrepancy between the payments.

Additionally, there were other problems that the IRS watchdog report found. Taxpayers, who made alimony payments, did not often provide the correct tax ID number for the one receiving the alimony. The Internal Revenue Service believes that it could have lost approximate $1.7 billion in tax revenues over a five-year period due to such errors.

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