The National Directory of Certified Public Accountants

Ask A CPA - Divorce & Marriage Issues

Can I Claim My Child As A Dependent On My Tax Return , Even Though He Lives With His Divorced Mother ?

There are many factors to clarify before you claim your child as a dependent. Generally a special rule favoring the custodial parent applies where divorced or separated parents together, provide more than half the child's support. The custodial parent will meet the dependency support test even if she did not pay half the child's support. The parents may arrange for the non-custodial parent to claim the child if IRS Form 8332 is signed by the custodial parent and supplied with the non-custodial parents tax return. Form 8332 is a waiver of claiming the exemption and the exemption waiver can be used for that year only, or for future years as well. Speak to your local CPA about the other criteria in claiming the child and about Form 8332.

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