Is Divorce Attorney Fees Tax Deductible


Are you going through a divorce and wondering if you can deduct your attorney fees on your taxes? If so, this blog post is for you! Divorce attorney fees can add up quickly, but the good news is that they may be tax deductible. In this article, we’ll dive into the details of what qualifies as a deductible expense and how to properly claim it on your taxes. So grab a cup of coffee, sit back, and let’s get started!

What are divorce attorney fees?

Divorce attorney fees are the costs associated with hiring a lawyer to represent you during a divorce proceeding. This includes the fee for their time, as well as any additional expenses such as court filing fees or expert witness charges.

The cost of an attorney can vary depending on several factors, including their experience and reputation, the complexity of your case, and where you live. Some attorneys may charge by the hour while others work on a flat fee basis.

It’s important to note that not all legal fees related to divorce are tax deductible. Only those specifically related to obtaining taxable income or preserving assets are eligible for deduction.

In addition, there are certain restrictions when it comes to deducting divorce attorney fees on your taxes. For example, if you receive reimbursement from your ex-spouse for these costs or if they were paid from a joint bank account with them, then they cannot be deducted.

Are divorce attorney fees tax deductible?

When going through a divorce, attorney fees can add up quickly. Many people wonder if these expenses are tax deductible. The answer is not straightforward as it depends on the specific circumstances of your case.

In general, legal fees for personal matters such as divorce are not tax deductible. However, there are some exceptions. If you paid legal fees to obtain taxable alimony or income-producing property, those expenses may be considered tax-deductible.

Another exception is if you incurred legal fees related to determining or collecting spousal support payments. In this case, those costs may also be eligible for a deduction.

It’s essential to keep accurate records of all attorney-related expenses and consult with a professional tax advisor to determine whether they qualify for any deductions.

While it may be disappointing that most divorce-related attorney fees are not tax-deductible, it’s important to prioritize getting the right representation during this challenging time rather than focusing solely on potential deductions.

How to deduct divorce attorney fees on your taxes

If you’ve paid divorce attorney fees, you may be wondering if they are tax deductible. The short answer is yes, but there are certain conditions that must be met before you can claim them as a deduction on your taxes.

Firstly, only legal fees related to the dissolution of marriage or legal separation are deductible. Any other legal expenses incurred during the divorce process, such as property settlements or child custody arrangements, cannot be claimed as a tax deduction.

Secondly, in order to deduct these fees on your taxes, you must itemize your deductions instead of taking the standard deduction. This means keeping track of all expenses related to the divorce process and providing documentation for them when filing your taxes.

It is also important to note that there is a limit on how much of these expenses can be deducted. Only legal fees that exceed 2% of your adjusted gross income (AGI) can be claimed as a deduction.

While it may take some extra effort and record-keeping to deduct divorce attorney fees on your taxes, it can provide some relief in what is already a difficult financial time.

What if you can’t afford a divorce attorney?

Divorce attorney fees can be a significant expense that not everyone can afford. If you find yourself in this situation, there are still options available to you.

Firstly, consider seeking out legal aid services in your area. These organizations provide free or reduced-cost legal assistance to those who cannot afford it. They may have attorneys on staff who specialize in divorce cases and can help guide you through the process.

Another option is to look for pro bono lawyers who offer their services for free to those in need. You can contact your local bar association or legal aid organization for a list of pro bono attorneys in your area.

If neither of these options works for you, consider representing yourself in court. This is known as filing “pro se” and means that you will act as your own attorney throughout the divorce proceedings. While this route may be more challenging, it can save you money on attorney fees.

Remember that not having an attorney does come with some risks and challenges such as lack of experience navigating through family courts; therefore make sure to do proper research before filing pro se.

If finances are tight while going through a divorce, know that there are alternative options available such as seeking out legal aid services or finding a pro bono lawyer. Representing yourself is another avenue but requires extensive knowledge about the law and procedures followed by family courts during divorce cases


Divorce can be a challenging and emotional experience for anyone to go through. And the added costs of hiring an attorney can make it even more stressful. However, knowing whether or not you can deduct these expenses on your taxes can provide some much-needed relief.

While in most cases divorce attorney fees are not tax-deductible, there are certain exceptions where they may be eligible for deduction. Remember to keep accurate records and consult with a tax professional if you have any questions about how to file your taxes after a divorce.

If you cannot afford an attorney, there are resources available that offer legal assistance at little or no cost. Don’t let financial constraints prevent you from seeking the help and support needed during this difficult time.

Ultimately, every situation is unique and requires careful consideration before making any decisions regarding finances or legal representation. It’s essential to seek out reliable information and advice from trusted sources as you navigate the complexities of divorce proceedings.