Mackall, Crounse & Moore, PLC has joined Dewitt Ross & Stevens S.C.

The newly formed DeWitt Mackall Crounse & Moore S.C. will provide clients with enhanced legal services
and efficiencies as well as access to more than 100 attorneys practicing in nearly 30 areas of
law in Wisconsin and Minnesota.

Dismiss this message


News & Education

Back to Family Law News Feed

Filter by:

An Awkward, but Important Conversation About Divorce for Middle to High Income Earners


Divorce Attorney Michele L. Perreault, from the law firm of DeWitt Ross & Stevens S.C., is advising her clients on an under-the-radar provision in the new tax bill passed by Congress, which was signed into law by the President that has a major impact on the financial outcome for families going through a divorce. The new tax bill eliminates the tax deductibility for alimony, which in Wisconsin is called maintenance, for any parties whose divorce is not completed by December 31, 2018.

“This law is going to create two classes of people: those who are divorced by December 31, 2018 will be able to utilize the tax law to potentially save tens of thousands of dollars in taxes per year – leaving more money for both households, post-divorce – and those who are not divorced in 2018, who will no longer be able to structure support payments to maximize household income,” said Perreault, who is the Chair of the firm’s Family Law Practice Group. As long as parties are divorced in 2018 (or earlier), their future payments can remain tax deductible. Waiting just one day too long to file for divorce can make a substantial financial difference, she added.

The change in the law has led to some awkward conversations with clients and potential clients. Perreault, who practices throughout Wisconsin continued, “despite what some might think, family lawyers typically urge clients to make every attempt to reconcile their relationship prior to filing for a divorce or legal separation. Now, however, we have to alert clients that it may well be in everyone’s best interests to file for divorce sooner rather than later to ensure that the divorce can be completed in time to take advantage of the tax law before it changes.” That is particularly true in Wisconsin, due to a 120-day waiting period from filing to the first date that parties can be legally divorced.

“If someone is strongly considering filing for divorce in 2018, to have a more realistic chance of it being completed by the end of the year, we are advising people that they should file no later than mid-June for a realistic chance of getting the divorce negotiated and resolved before the end of the year. For those people with more complex financial circumstances, the sooner they file the better.”

Skilled family lawyers can advise clients and potential clients whether this change in tax law will likely have a substantial impact in individual situations before a client decides whether to make the decision to file or not. “This is not a situation where lawyers are ‘pushing divorce’ on those who are on the fence, but it is important that people make informed decisions about their future with as much information as possible,” said Perreault.

About the Author

Michelle joined DeWitt in January 2011 as the Director of Marketing. She is responsible for the marketing, communication and business development efforts of the firm.

She has more than 19 years of experience in the legal marketing industry.  Michelle is a proud veteran of the United States Army Military Intelligence Corps where she served four years on active duty as an Arabic Linguist, with an emphasis in Egyptian dialect.

For more information about this article please contact Michelle Friedman, Marketing Director, by email or by phone at (262) 754-2877.

Our Locations

We are currently limiting the amount of outside visitors to the firm.  

Please work directly with your attorney who will coordinate any onsite visits to ensure the safety of our clients and colleagues.


2 East Mifflin Street, Suite 600
Madison, WI 53703
(608) 255-8891
Get Directions

Greater Milwaukee

13845 Bishop’s Drive, Suite 300
Brookfield, WI 53005
(262) 754-2840
Get Directions


2100 AT&T Tower,
901 Marquette Avenue
Minneapolis, MN 55402
(612) 305-1400
Get Directions

Get to know us

DeWitt LLP is one of the ten largest law firms based in Wisconsin, with an additional presence in Minnesota. It has nearly 140 attorneys practicing in Madison, Metropolitan Milwaukee and Minneapolis in over 30 legal practice areas, and has the experience to service clients of all scopes and sizes.

Our People
Our Law Firm
Areas of Expertise
News & Education
Contact Us


We are an active and proud member of Lexwork International, an association of mid-sized independent law firms in major cities located throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia and an active member of SCG Legal, an association of more than 140 independent law firms serving businesses in all 50 state capitals and major commercial centers around the world.


Best Lawyers 2013 – 2018
Compass Award 2012
Top 100 Lawyers: National Trial Lawyers Association


While we would like to hear from you, we cannot represent you until we know that doing so will not create a conflict of interest. Accordingly, please do not send us any information about any matter that may involve you until you receive a written statement from us that we represent you (an “engagement letter”). You will not be a client of the firm until you receive such an engagement letter.

The best way for you to initiate a possible representation is to call DeWitt LLP at 608-255-8891. We will make every effort to put you in touch with a lawyer suited to handle your matter. When you receive an engagement letter from one of our lawyers, you will be our client and we may exchange information freely.

Please click the “OK” button if you understand and accept the foregoing statement and wish to proceed.