If my husband was married before and ordered to pay a percentage of his income as spousal support and I die, will my life insurance proceeds be considered income to be paid to her?

I have him as a beneficiary on my life insurance policy. If he gets that money is that considered income for him where he will end up paying a percentage to her?

Asked on October 30, 2015 under Family Law, Michigan


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

There's no easy 100% definitive answer that fits all situations. Generally, life insurance death benefits are not considered taxable income, and it's also not "income" in the everyday sense of payment for employment, so in the absence of any guidance from the divorce decree or order, it would most likely be the case that the benefits would not be "income" that he has to pay to his ex-wife. However, divorce decrees, orders, and settlements are interpreted according to their language: if the language in the divorce document indicates that your husband should pay a percentage of any money, from any source, that he receives, that is enforceable. For a more definitive answer about your situation, have your husband locate a copy of the order/decree/settlement and bring it to an attorney to review.

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