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dsm16gsx
New Member

I'm the custodial parent but the other parent is claiming our child. How do I enter child care expenses?

I am separated with one child. We have our child an even number of nights during the year, but I am the custodial parent based on higher adjusted gross income. I paid all of the work-related child care expenses in 2020, but it is the other parent's year to claim our child as a dependent. How do I claim a credit and enter the work-related child care expenses I paid in 2020?
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2 Replies
KrisD15
Expert Alumni

I'm the custodial parent but the other parent is claiming our child. How do I enter child care expenses?

You would enter the child's information under "Personal Information" 

You will find a screen that asks about having an agreement with the other parent, (FORM 8332) select "Yes".

Continue to report that the other parent is claiming the child this year. 

The child will be reported as not your dependent for the tax year, however could affect your earned income credit, dependent care credit, and/or head of household filing status. 

 

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I'm the custodial parent but the other parent is claiming our child. How do I enter child care expenses?

If you had custody an exactly equal number of nights (since 2020 was a leap year, this is possible -- 183 nights for each parent) then you are not eligible for the child and dependent care credit for day care expenses, because the child must live with you more than half the year, and exactly half is not more than half. 

 

If the child lived with you more than half the nights (even 1 more than half) then you are eligible, select "7 months" in Turbotax since the program interprets "6 months" as exactly half.  You must also give the other parent a signed form 8332 release, and they must indicate on their tax return that the child lived with them less than half the year.  Otherwise, the dependent care credit claim will generate an error causing your returns to be rejected and/or getting an IRS letter of investigation. 

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