One of the major sticking points for many Pennsylvania former couples who are getting a divorce is custody of the children. While some parents can work together quickly to reach an agreement, the dispute can drag on for months or even years for others. However, it should be noted that the change in tax laws starting Jan. 1, 2019, can have an impact on how expensive it may be to have full custody of the children.

Under the tax laws that were in effect in 2018, each child increased the amount of deductions a person could have on their tax return if he or she had primary custody of the children. This could potentially save the parent thousands, allowing these funds to go towards the costs of raising the children.

Under the 2019 tax laws, the personal exemption will be eliminated. This means that the parent who can claim the kids on his or her tax returns will not get the multiplier as a deduction. However, the parent with primary custody may still be eligible for additional child tax credits. These tax credits will be more generous under the 2019 tax code. Further, those with young children may see an increased benefit starting 2026 when the exemption goes back to the original minimum of $4,000 per person.

Even though it will be more expensive to have custody of the children in 2019, determining custody, child support and other parenting issues are often difficult for former couples. Both parents may not be able to see their children as much as they would like. A family law attorney may not only assist with reaching an agreement regarding the children, but he or she may also discuss the financial implications of full primary custody with the parent.