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10 Tax Tips for Women Going through Divorce


This month can be tumultuous on many fronts, and for women going through divorce, tax season can be particularly difficult –both emotionally and financially.

In an effort to calm at least part of the storm, here are answers to some of the tax questions most divorcing women must grapple with:


What responsibility do I have if I sign a joint tax return?

Unless you take the appropriate precautions, signing a joint tax return can lead to trouble. Attorney Norman Heller, partner and matrimonial practice group leader, at Blank Rome in New York City, suggests you

  • obtain a copy of the returns well before the filing deadline so your attorney and tax advisor can review them before you sign, and

  • protect yourself with an indemnification agreement.

“If the husband wants the wife to sign joint tax returns when they are divorcing, she should try to obtain an indemnification agreement in which the husband agrees not only to pay the tax due on his and her income for the year, but also to hold her harmless should the IRS or state tax authority later determine more tax is owed,” Norman told me.

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"10 Tax Tips for Women Going through Divorce," by Jeff Landers was published in IRIS on April 4, 2018.