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A child support payment is any support payment which would be deductible under the rules set out above that is not identified in the agreement or order under which it is made as being solely for the support of a spouse or common-law partner or former spouse or common-law partner or the parent of the taxpayer’s child. In short, unless the written agreement or court order which provides for periodic payments specifies that an amount is for the benefit of the recipient and not the child, it is presumed to be child support.

Therefore, if a written agreement, for example, provides for a global amount of support to be paid in respect of a spouse and child, the whole amount is considered child support for tax purposes. The same treatment will apply to amounts that are required to be paid directly to third parties but are nevertheless potentially deductible. Such third-party payments will be treated as child support amounts unless the order or agreement under which they are made clearly identifies the payments as being solely for the support of a spouse or common-law partner, former spouse or common-law partner, or parent of the payer’s child, as the case may be.

Back to Article: Divorce and Money Matters Can be Taxing

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