Thursday, February 9, 2012

The 'Oops - My Bad' Case

Taxpayer was denied the dependency exemption, head of household status, EIC, and CTC for her son. The boys father had also (appropriately) claimed him as a dependent in this year. A new custody agreement gave the father primary custody, she acknowledged he lived with his father all year, and the support agreement required her to provide only 20% of her son’s support in this year making it amply clear that she did not provide 50% of his support. Apparently, she had just prepared her tax return in the same manner she had prior to relinquishing custody. I am not sure how she got all the way to take court before realizing she did not have a leg to stand on.

Take aways:

• In cases such as this, the custodial parent may execute a Form 8332, Release of Claim to Exemption for Child of Divorced or Separated Parents to allow the other parent the dependency exemption if so desired.

• If all the requirements are met, a child may qualify you for HOH status even if you are allowing the other parent the dependency exemption.

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