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Can I Claim My Child on My Taxes if I Don’t Have Custody?


Which Parent Gets to Claim the Child on Their Taxes?

As a newly divorced couple, paying your taxes separately can be confusing when child custody and child support become factors. In most cases, usually, the custodial parent claims your children as dependents on your taxes.

There are certain tax breaks that are afforded to you as a custodial parent that a non-custodial parent doesn’t receive when filing taxes.

What is a Custodial or Non-Custodial Parent?

A custodial parent is the parent your child spends most of their time with and likely lives with in the same household.

The non-custodial parent, on the other hand, shares custody with the custodial parent and has the same rights and responsibilities, but your child doesn’t live with them.

While both parents share the same rights and responsibilities of your children, only one parent can claim them on their taxes.

Who Claims Your Child As a Dependent?

It’s important to note that in order to claim any child as a dependent on your taxes, your child should be 17 years of age or younger at the end of the tax year. They should also have lived with you for at least six months of the year, and you should have provided at least 50% of their financial support.

There are more factors that contribute to which parent will likely be able to claim your child as a dependent on your tax return, such as:

  • Your child spends the most time with you.

  • If your child spends an equal amount of time with you and your ex, then you can claim them if you have a higher adjusted gross income.

  • If your ex-spouse isn’t the child’s biological parent, but you are, then you may be able to claim your child.

Claiming your child as a dependent on your tax return can have a few drawbacks, like penalties from the IRS if filed incorrectly.

Contact a Fairfield and Folsom Divorce Attorney

Filing taxes can be tricky and nerve-wracking for any newly divorced couple. However, consulting with a trusted attorney like Law Office of Tiffany L. Andrews, P.C. about your child’s care and expenses when you and your ex can’t agree on who will claim your child should help you come closer to a resolution.

Contact us today at (916) 794-4576 to discuss your concerns about child custody and child support.

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