When Avoiding Tax Laws Leads to Parental Alienation

Parental alienation is caused by parents who want to take advantage of tax deductions and other tax and monetary benefits they receive if they do not have to pay child support and pay for 100% of the children’s expenses. These incentives cause many parents to look at divorce as a business deal; placing their monetary benefits above the best interests of the children.

For example, our current law gives tax incentives to a parent who has full custody, thereby encouraging a dishonest parent to use strategies of parental alienation to teach children to hate or fear their loving, fit parent. However, to encourage our values of collaboration and love for our children, this current law should be replaced with one where parents should each be given tax incentives for working out a 50/50 custody arrangement. If this fails, then the court will set the 50/50 custody arrangement, but the parents (or the one refusing to comply with a reasonable custody arrangement) will lose the tax incentive.

To deviate from a 50/50 custody arrangement, there must be evidence showing the parent has a pattern of unfit behavior over a reasonable period; not merely unfit behavior prior to the divorce (which is often brought on by the parental alienation, as the experts clearly state). Often the alienating parent will use strategies to make the alienated parent look unfit in preparation for the custody battle. If one parent is deemed unfit, the court must encourage the unfit parent to obtain the necessary support to be brought up to the level of being fit, so shared custody can be awarded.

In the meantime, frequent visitation, even supervised if necessary, must begin since generally it is in the child’s best interest to spend time with both parents. Watching a parent make positive changes; like recovering from alcoholism, can be a very worthwhile and life-changing experience for a child.

The law must be amended to provide sanctions for alienating parents who do not allow children (whom they now have obtained full custody for) to accept any gifts or money from the alienated parent so this alienating parent can receive the tax benefits for providing 100% of the child/teen’s support. Current tax law encourages parental alienation for financial means instead of encouraging the parent/child relationship.

If these monetary and tax incentives in our current laws are eliminated AND sanctions and fines are provided for as deterrents, the millions of children who are now being harmed by parental alienation and becoming burdens to society will significantly decrease.

-references; see background page-

-by Sara Hassman-




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