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11049: 1040 - Alimony Paid or Received


1040 Individual Data Entry

Where do I enter alimony in Drake Tax?

Starting in Drake19:

Per the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, divorces finalized after December 31, 2018 will not have the provision to allow the payer to deduct alimony payments from their income tax. In turn, the recipient will not have a requirement to claim alimony as part of their taxable income. This will not affect:

  • Divorces finalized on or before December 31, 2018. 
  • Payments stated to be other than alimony.

Any divorce agreements in place on or before December 31, 2018 will continue unaffected by this change, unless both parties agree to modify their divorce agreement to conform to the new amendments of the tax law. 

Alimony Received

Alimony received is entered on screen 3, line 2a. This flows to Form 1040, Schedule 1, line 2a.

  • If filing form 1040-NR, alimony received is entered on the Foreign tab > NR2 screen > Line 12

Alimony Paid

Alimony paid is entered on screen 4, line 18a and flows to Form 1040, Schedule 1, line 18a.

  • Note: The recipient's social security number must be entered to avoid EF message 5043. 

You should also enter the date of divorce on screen 3 or 4. If you enter a date later than 12/31/2018, the amount of alimony paid or received will not be carried to Schedule 1 and note 685 will generate. If no date is entered, the software will assume that the divorce was finalized prior to December 31, 2018 and that amount should flow to the form. Be sure to review this entry for accuracy. 

Drake18 and prior

For divorces finalized prior to December 31, 2018, alimony received is reported as income and alimony paid can be taken as an adjustment to income. Per Publication 504, page 13:

"Alimony is a payment to or for a spouse or former spouse under a divorce or separation instrument. It does not include voluntary payments that are not made under a divorce or separation instrument. Alimony is deductible by the payer, and the recipient must include it in income. …. To be alimony, a payment must meet certain requirements. There are some differences between the requirements that apply to payments under instruments executed after 1984 and to payments under instruments executed before 1985."

Alimony Received

Alimony received is entered on screen 3, line 11. This flows to Form 1040, Schedule 1, line 11 (Form 1040, line 11 in Drake17 and prior).

  • If filing form 1040-NR, alimony received is entered on the Foreign tab > NR2 screen > line 12

Alimony Paid

Alimony paid is entered on screen 4, line 31 and flows to Form 1040, Schedule 1, line 31a (Form 1040, line 31 in Drake17 and prior)

  • Note: The recipient's social security number must be entered to avoid EF message 5043.

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