Claiming a dependent on your tax return can make a drastic financial difference in what you owe in taxes, or what is owed to you. Just one child can take $4,050 off your taxable income, and children are not the only people you can claim as dependents. In addition to qualifying children, qualifying relatives are also eligible to be claimed as dependents.
Caring for children and other relatives involves many other expenses, such as medical care, childcare, and deductions involving familial issues. If you have more than one dependent, your savings could be significant.
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Trying to decipher who can be claimed as a dependent can be tricky. As mentioned, qualifying children and qualifying relatives may be claimed as dependents.
Qualifying Children: In some situations, a child may qualify to be a dependent of more than one person, but only one person can claim the child. The following are five tests that narrow down who should claim the child as their qualifying dependent:
It is not uncommon for a child to meet all five tests to be a qualifying child of more than one person. Although this may be the case, only one person can claim the child as a dependent.
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Qualifying Relative: There are four tests a person must meet in order to be your qualifying relative.
You must be able to give the social security number of anyone you are claiming as a dependent. If the person doesn’t have a SSN, you must show the individual taxpayer identification number (ITIN) or adoption taxpayer identification number (ATIN) to the IRS. As with a qualifying child, only one person can claim the dependent, and the dependent cannot file a joint tax return with anyone else.
Tax law is complicated, and if you have any questions regarding who you can claim as a dependent, you should contact a tax attorney. Your lawyer will be able to sift through federal tax laws and advise you on your best options and how to get the most out of your tax return. Additionally, you can claim the cost of consulting a tax professional, as well as the cost of having your taxes professionally prepared.
Last Modified: 07-08-2018 06:58 PM PDTLaw Library Disclaimer
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