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Can I claim a non relative as a dependent?

My girlfriends son has lived with me all year.  he's unrelated to me but i have supported him.  I don't think I can file as head of household, but can I claim him as a dependent?

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Can I claim a non relative as a dependent?

Perhaps, if you GF is not required to file a tax return.   If she is, then the child would be her Qualifying child and you cannot claim an unrelated child if the parent *can* claim the child whether she actually claims or not.

---Tests to be a Qualifying Relative (& Unrelated Persons)---
(Must meet ALL of these tests to be a dependent)

1. The person cannot be your qualifying child or the qualifying child of any other taxpayer.

2. The person either must be related to you, or must live with you all year (all 365 days - There are exceptions for temporary absences such as school, illness, business, vacation, military service) as a member of your household.

3. The person's gross income for the year must be less than $4,050 (tax-exempt income, such as certain social security benefits, is not included in gross income)

4. You must provide more than half of the person's total support** for the year.

5. The person is not filing a joint return.

In any case, the person must be a U.S. citizen, U.S. resident alien, U.S. national, or a resident of Canada or Mexico

The above is simplified; see IRS Publication 17, for full information.

** Worksheet for determining support

**Disclaimer: This post is for discussion purposes only and is NOT tax advice. The author takes no responsibility for the accuracy of any information in this post.**
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