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Child and Dependent Care Credit - Spouse earned less than $6,000 due to cancer treatment

My spouse earned less than $6,000 in 2023 due to cancer treatment leaving her unable to work most of the year.  She earned some income towards the end of the year, but less than $6K.  Does she meet the definition of disabled?  We paid approximately $10K for pre-k for our twins and I contributed $5K to pre-tax dependent care FSA.

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1 Reply
LindaS5247
Expert Alumni

Child and Dependent Care Credit - Spouse earned less than $6,000 due to cancer treatment

To qualify for this credit, you must meet all of these criteria:

 

  • You (and your spouse, if filing jointly) must have earned income.
    • The earned income requirement for one spouse is waived if they were a full-time student or disabled (if they lived with the other spouse for more than 6 months in 2023).
  • You paid caregiving expenses so that you (and your spouse, if filing jointly) could work or look for work.
    • The work/look-for work requirement for one spouse is waived if they were a full-time student or disabled (if they lived with the other spouse for more than 6 months in 2023).
  • You paid a caregiver to care for a Qualifying Person. The caregiver can't be:
    • Your spouse.
    • Your dependent.
    • Your child if they were under 19 on the last day of 2023, even if not your dependent.
    • The parent of the Qualifying Person, if the Qualifying Person is your child under the age of 13 during 2023.
  • Your filing status is not Married Filing Separately (except under certain circumstances).
  • You can provide the care provider's name, address, and their SSN, ITIN, or EIN on your return (unless it's a tax-exempt organization).

 

According to Pub 503, the rule for student-spouse or spouse not able to care for self. Your spouse is treated as having earned income for any month that he or she is: 1. A full-time student, or 2. Physically or mentally, not able to care for themselves. (Your spouse must also live with you for more than half the year.)

 

Physically or mentally not able to care for oneself  is defined as follows:- An individual is physically or mentally incapable of self-care if, as a result of a physical or mental defect, the individual is incapable of caring for his or her hygiene or nutritional needs or requires the full-time attention of another person for the individual's own safety or the safety of others.

 


Click here for an interactive tool from the IRS to help determine your eligibility for the Child and Dependent Care Credit.

 

Click here for "The Ins and Outs of the Child Depenndent Care Credit.

 

Click here for Publication 503.

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