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Subject:  Re: alimony/spousal support Date:  11/12/1999  1:53 AM
Author:  ToniABS Number:  21016 of 127747

I'd like to clarify the issue since the last answer is not entirely correct. It is not so definite, and there is a gray area. Further, the previous poster does not allow for any hope that a non-custodial parent can always sue the ex-spouse on a local level if an agreement regarding the dependent is violated. Although the IRS is tired of this issue, the IRS still does recognize explicitly written decrees. Please see Publication 17 and go to the section "Support test for children of Divorced or Separated Parents." There is an easy graph that outlines some scenarios (Figure 3-B). If the custodial parent did not sign a form 8332 or write a letter releasing the exemption, the non-custodial parent CAN still pass the support test if there is a "decree or agreement executed after 1984 that unconditionally entitles the noncustodial parent to the exemption."

And, on that note, might I suggest to any reader that the Gov. has a great site which can answer tax questions - in addition to this site. Please visit and check out the Daily Digital. There is a FAQ area, you can download, order, or read publications, and now, you can ask direct questions to Customer Service Reps. who will quote you the tax law in whatever gray area you come up with.

Take care,
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