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Who is Classified as a Dependent on Tax Returns

Who is Classified as a Dependent on Tax Returns

By on Oct 15, 2015 in Consultation, Filing Taxes, Tax Tips | 0 comments

For most taxpayers, it is common knowledge that you are able to claim your child as a dependent when filing your annual taxes. Yet, did you know that you can also claim adults, relatives and non-relatives?

Determining whom you can legally claim on your taxes really isn’t complicated. It’s all very simple: If you have financially taken care of someone with a social security number, the chances are that they may qualify as your dependent.


5 Tax Requirements

Before classifying someone as a dependent, it is recommended to ask yourself the following questions:

  •  Are they a US citizen?
  • Is the person related to you?
  • Is this person adopted?
  • Does their gross income exceed $3,950?
  • Has this individual received half of their support from you?
  • Do you have legal papers to verify this information?


As mentioned earlier, children automatically qualify as a dependent. Adoptive children, also qualify as long as you can provide the legal paperwork to verify this. Now if the child is related to you, and you have provided for that individual, then no paperwork is necessary. However, for children adopted outside of the United States, papers are required that states the child has been legally adopted and lives in the US or has been living with you for that tax year in a foreign country.

Children can be claimed up until the age of 18, unless they go to college full-time at least 5 months out of the year, then the ‘child’ can be claimed up until the age of 24.

Relatives and Non-Relatives

You may be caring for an aging parent or that one relative who always seems to need your help! Either way, if you have been financially responsible for them in that tax year, whether they have been living with you or not, they may very well qualify as a dependent.

The individual cannot have earned more than $3,950 and they cannot claim themselves or anyone else as a dependent. The only exception is if the person whom you are claiming is permanently disabled and receives resources to aid that disability.

In order to classify a non-relative as a dependent, they need to have lived with you for the tax year you are filing for. Otherwise, the same terms apply as relatives.

Married couples can claim their spouse. Yet, only one can claim the other and only one can file as head of household. In this case, the couple can file ‘Married Filing Jointly’.

Claim Your Money!

Being able to claim a dependent on your taxes could very well tip the scales as to whether you owe the IRS. It may turn out that they owe you!

What other important information are you missing out on? There may very well be money that is rightfully yours to claim on your taxes. Success Tax Relief has been in the business of communicating with the IRS on behalf of our clients for over 30 years. We have acquired a bounty of fruitful information that will help you determine whether or not you can claim someone as a dependent and earn any credits. Call us today at 877-825-1179 or online today to find out!


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