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laitnj69
New Member

Can i claim earned income credit without a dependent

I claimed my daughter for earned income credit that lived with me for more than half of the year, but did not claim her as a dependent. Will my ex-wife be able to claim my daughter as a dependent?
1 Reply
Hal_Al
Level 15

Can i claim earned income credit without a dependent

Yes.

 There is a special rule in the case of divorced & separated (including never married) parents. When the non-custodial parent (your ex wife) is claiming the child as a dependent/exemption/child tax credit; the custodial parent ( you, who the child "lived with me for more than half of the year") is still allowed to claim the same child for Earned Income Credit, Head of Household filing status, and day care credit. This "splitting of the child" is not available to parents who lived together at any time during the last 6 months of the year; then only one of you can claim the child for any tax reasons. The tax benefits may not be split in any other manner.

Note in particular that the non-custodial parent can never claim the Earned Income Credit, Head of Household filing status or the day care credit, based on that child, even when the custodial parent has released the exemption to him.

 So, it's good idea to let the other parent know that you will be claiming those items, as many first time divorced parents are not aware of this rule and may try to claim those items, which will cause the IRS to send out letters.

Ref: http://www.irs.gov/publications/p17/ch03.html#en_US_2014_publink1000170897 Scroll down to "Children of divorced or separated parents (or parents who live apart)"

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