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What alimony documents should alimony payers keep?

Whether you're the payer or the receiver of alimony, it's important to keep your documents organized and readily available in case an issue ever develops. Perhaps, for example, your spouse stops paying you alimony or doesn't pay the full amount you're owed -- your documents will help to prove that this has occurred. Alternatively, maybe you've been paying your alimony each month but the receiving spouse accuses you of not fulfilling your monthly obligations. Here, your documents will offer the proof to show you've adhered to your court orders.

As for what documents each ex-spouse should keep, here's what the paying spouse needs to maintain on file:

A ledger showing each payment made

The information on the ledger should include the check number, date the payment was made, address where the payer mailed the check and a copy of the check that was cashed.

Copies of signed checks before sending them

The check should include in its memo section that it's for alimony payments and which month the check is paying for.

Receipts for cash payments

If the payer chooses to give a cash payment, he or she should obtain a signed receipt for that payment.

Here's what receiving spouses should keep:

A ledger showing each payment made

The ledger should detail the date of the payment and the amount, check number and account number associated with the alimony check, the name of the bank used to send payment and/or identifying information for other forms of payment.

Appropriate copies of important information

Recipients should keep a copy of the money order or check used for the payment. A copy of receipts signed as payments when accepting cash.

If you have questions about alimony documentation and what you should keep for legal purposes, you might want to visit our website to learn more about alimony and divorce in California.

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