Hi and welcome to Just Answer!
The first issue - if shares are sold - that transaction is not eligible for installment treatment - thus the gain or loss is recognized in the year of sale.
That is - your gain or loss is reported in the year shares are sold and if you had a gain - for income tax purposes that is included into your taxable income for that year.
On the note - as payments are coming every year - you are liable for taxes on interest, but not on principal payments.
Income on the sale of shares is recognized in the year the sale transaction is completed.
The note indeed is your asset - that is regardless how income is realized or recognized.
The right to receive an income on the note is your asset.
Lev : From a state standpoint but the federal government doesn't recognize the income until I get a check.....
That is not always correct. Income from tax prospective is recognized when it is constructively received.
If you receive another asset in exchange for the asset being sold - income is constructively received - and generally is taxable.
Another issue - because the sale transaction is financed in some situations we may use installment method reporting the income. However not all assets are eligible for installment method. In particular - if shares are sold - they are NOT eligible for installment treatment.
However if the real property is sold on installments - the installment method may be used to report taxable income.
That seems is not your case because as you mentioned - the company stock was sold - please verify if that is correct.
As your assets are divided in divorce - the note is your asset and should be evaluated. Its FMV value may be less then the amount on that note.
If the note will be owned by you - payments on that note will be YOUR income.
Based on your information - these payments are partly taxable - principal part is not taxable, but interest is taxable.
However from child support or alimony prospective that would not matter - still that would be your income.
If the note will be owned by you AND your spouse (or ex-spouse) - payments on that note will be your and your spouse's income - and generally must be divided equally unless the divorce decree rules differently.
Correspondingly - each of you will be responsible for taxable portion of that income.
If the note will be transferred to your spouse (or ex-spouse) as a settlement in divorce - she will receive that income and will be responsible for income taxes on the taxable portion.
For additional information, refer to Publication 537, Installment Sales - www.irs