Solved: Need clarification on the definition of Incapable of Self Care - Child Care Credit
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Need clarification on the definition of Incapable of Self Care - Child Care Credit

My wife has become i'll and had to stop working in 2014. Due to her illness she has trouble caring for herself and our children so even though she is home we still pay some child care expenses. I am not sure whether she meets the definition of Incapable of Self Care, as the examples given are pretty generic. My biggest concern is how to substantiate this. She has filed for disability but we have not received a formal decision. Any feedback would be greatly appreciated
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Level 4

Need clarification on the definition of Incapable of Self Care - Child Care Credit

Incapable of self-care generally means that the person cannot perform normal, everyday activities to care for themselves.  These activities would include being able to bathe themselves, dress themselves,  or prepare their own meals among other things.  The IRS defines it this way:

"Physically or Mentally Not Able to Care for Oneself - 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."

If you are still unsure of whether your wife meets this definition you should consult with her doctor.  Her doctor may be able to provide you with a statement that in his/her medical opinion your wife is not capable of caring for herself.  If he can provide you with such a statement keep it with your tax records but do not send it to the IRS with your return.

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1 Reply
Level 4

Need clarification on the definition of Incapable of Self Care - Child Care Credit

Incapable of self-care generally means that the person cannot perform normal, everyday activities to care for themselves.  These activities would include being able to bathe themselves, dress themselves,  or prepare their own meals among other things.  The IRS defines it this way:

"Physically or Mentally Not Able to Care for Oneself - 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."

If you are still unsure of whether your wife meets this definition you should consult with her doctor.  Her doctor may be able to provide you with a statement that in his/her medical opinion your wife is not capable of caring for herself.  If he can provide you with such a statement keep it with your tax records but do not send it to the IRS with your return.

View solution in original post

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