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Deceased dependent

My mother passed away in 2021 but due to the pandemic, I was still paying for her stuff, like storage, and some minor subscriptions that took time to cancel until last month.  Can I still claim her as a dependent due to the cost incurred?

7 Replies

Deceased dependent

If you are asking if you can claim a person who passed in 2021 as a dependent  on your 2022 tax return the answer is a resounding NO. 

Deceased dependent

Ok, thanks for the quick response, Is there any way to write off the cost incurred from 2021 to now?

Deceased dependent

Sorry but no. 

Returning Member

Deceased dependent

You cannot carry over to 2022, but you can certainly amend your 2021 tax return with the additional costs. 

Deceased dependent

There is never a tax deduction for ordinary living expenses, either for you or your dependent.  The only tax break for an adult dependent is the $500 credit, and you can only claim them as a dependent if they are alive during the year.  Your adult parent can be your dependent for 2021 if they meet the other qualifications, even though they died partway during the year, but they cannot be your dependent for 2022.


There is a special exception for medical expenses. If you paid medical expenses for the person in 2022, you can deduct those expenses as itemized deductions on your 2022 tax return, as long as the person was your dependent when they passed away, even though they cannot be claimed as your tax dependent for 2022. 
The IRS says in publication 502,

What if you pay medical expenses of a deceased spouse or dependent?

If you paid medical expenses for your deceased spouse or dependent, include them as medical expenses on your Schedule A (Form 1040) in the year paid, whether they are paid before or after the decedent's death. The expenses can be included if the person was your spouse or dependent either at the time the medical services were provided or at the time you paid the expenses.

Deceased dependent


I don’t understand this answer, and I believe it is incorrect. Various living expenses of the person, such as magazine subscriptions and storage costs, are never tax deductible. Medical expenses that were paid in 2021 would be itemized deductions in 2021, and medical expenses paid in 2022 would be itemized deductions in 2022, even though the dependent passed away in 2021.


I can’t see anything that would be gained from amending the 2021 return. There is nothing that could be added to the 2021 return except for medical expenses paid in 2021 (if the taxpayer did not previously include them). 

Level 15

Deceased dependent

@Opus 17 

I changed ibar601's reply from best answer to an ordinary one.   You are right.

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