Section 71 Payments - Section 71 is a Section of the IRS Code, which states that alimony, and separate maintenance payments generally are taxable to the recipient and deductible from gross income by the payor. These payments can be treated as alimony for tax purposes if;
The payment is made in cash, check or money order;
There must be a written court order or separation agreement;
The couple may not agree that the payments are not to receive alimony tax treatment
They may not be residing in the same household
They may not file a joint tax return; and
No portion of the payment may be considered child support.
Additionally, Section 71 requires that if the payor of alimony want to deduct alimony payments over $15,000 per year, payment must last for at least three years. If this requirement is not met, payments are subject to recapture rules.