Puja Sachdev | October 29, 2022 | Property Division
Stimulus checks helped many San Diego, California families during the height of the pandemic. However, these stimulus checks can create extra headaches for divorced parents. Not only do the checks increase if you have children, but they may also only go to one parent, potentially leaving the other parent left without any financial assistance.
Many couples are able to resolve their issues by splitting checks evenly or fairly between them. If you can’t reach an agreement, however, you may need to seek guidance from a San Diego, California, family law attorney. Continue reading to learn more.
How Are Stimulus Checks Divided?
Stimulus check amounts relevant to our discussion are as follows:
- Up to $1400 per qualifying individual
- $1400 for each dependent child under the age of 17
Based on income limits, most people received a stimulus check, even if it wasn’t for the full amount. When a couple gets divorced and a stimulus check is received during the divorce proceedings, the amount is subject to distribution during the divorce. This is the case even if the check went to only one spouse.
If you’re already divorced, the situation may be different. Depending on your final divorce decree and any marital settlement agreement, the division of the funds may rest with language in those documents. That should be your first place to check for how to divide a stimulus check.
In many cases, especially if your divorce was finalized prior to the onset of the pandemic, your divorce decree and marital settlement agreement may say nothing about how to split stimulus checks. In these situations, you may need to work with your ex-spouse to figure out how to split the check. You may decide to simply use all of the money for the benefit of your child, especially if you and your spouse don’t need the extra cash.
However, some former spouses are not on good terms with one another and may not be able to reach a suitable outcome on their own. In these cases, you may need to go to mediation or to court to determine how the money should be dispersed.
What Should I Do if I Received My Ex-Spouse’s Stimulus Check?
If you received a stimulus check entirely in your former spouse’s name, you should send the check to them. If you received the stimulus as a direct deposit, you should also make a transfer to your former spouse.
However, if the stimulus check is in your name, you may not be required to share the funds with your former spouse. Be aware, however, that if your stimulus check includes funds for your child, part of that share may rightfully belong to your former spouse. Keeping any money rightfully owed to another person may put you in legal trouble.
Speak With a San Diego Family Law Attorney Today
If you’re unable to successfully resolve a dispute over a stimulus check with your former spouse, you may need guidance from legal counsel in San Diego, California. Contact Sachdev Family Law, APC, today to discuss your options.
Contact Our Family Law Firm in San Diego, CA
San Diego Divorce Lawyers, APC
2851 Camino del Rio S #430
San Diego, CA 92108