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LLJ
Level 1

Head of Household confusion

I am confused about the head of household classification.  I got a letter from the IRS verifying the status.  I thought I met the requirements but now I am unsure.  I claimed a 25 y.o. child(would now be a qualifying relative - I think) that was a full- time student, lived with me all year, I paid all housing costs, and they made just over $1000 for income for the year.  Does this qualify for me to use head of household?

1 Best answer

Accepted Solutions
macuser_22
Level 15

Head of Household confusion


@LLJ wrote:

I guess I do not understand the difference between her being a qualify relative dependent or a fulltime student dependent at age 23?  Both of these would qualify me to be HOH if I am single, pay all the bills for the house and she lived with me the entire year, correct??  


Correct, both will qualify for HOH.  It is the requirements that are different.    From what you first posted it would appear that she qualities by the rules that I posted -

 

- she lived with you more than half the year.

- you paid more the half the total household costs for the year.

- her income was less than $4,150.

 

No problem - you qualify for HOH.

 

 

**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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21 Replies
Bsch4477
Level 15

Head of Household confusion

Yes, if you paid more than half of his/her support and he/she is related to you. 

LLJ
Level 1

Head of Household confusion

so she does not need to be disabled or something like that.

macuser_22
Level 15

Head of Household confusion

Disability has nothing to do with HOH.

 

Head of Household is for UNMARRIED taxpayers with a related dependent or married and have not lived with their spouse at anytime during the last 6 months of the tax year AND has a child, stepchild or foster child that can be a dependent.
=======================================
You may be able to file as head of household if you meet all the following requirements.

1. You are unmarried or “considered unmarried” on the last day of the year.
(You could be considered unmarried if your spouse did not live in your home at any time during the last 6 months of the tax year).
If you were considered married for part of the year and lived in a community property state, special rules may apply in determining your income and expenses. See Publication 555 for more information.

2. You paid more than half the cost of keeping up a home for the year.

3. A “qualifying person” lived with you in the home for more than half the year (except for temporary absences such as school) - a parent does not have to live with you to be a qualifying person.

4. If the qualifying person is your qualifying relative, their gross income must have been less than $4,150 (do not include non taxable Social Security) and you provided more than 1/2 of their support

5. You must be able to claim the dependent for the qualifying person except in the case of divorced or separated parents (that lived apart) and the noncustodial parent is claiming the dependent.

A Qualifying person is either:
A qualifying child or a qualifying closely related relative and meets certain other requirements, however if you are considered unmarried it can only be your child, stepchild, or foster child.

See IRS Publication 501 for more information about who is a qualifying person and a worksheet to determine the cost of keeping up a home.

See IRS Pub 501 for more information
https://www.irs.gov/publications/p501#en_US_2018_publink1000220775

**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.**
LLJ
Level 1

Head of Household confusion

macuser-22 

I had read all the items you had sent me and that is why I had marked myself as head of house but the IRS is questioning if I should have had her as a dependent for the HOH claim.  By your first written response it looks like you say that the person living with me would also need to have a child?  I did not see that written in any of the info I found when trying to be sure I did my tax correct last year.  By the definitions I saw she is a qualifying relative - did not have her own family, fulltime student that worked a little side job for minimal pay for the year.  I paid all the bills for her to live in the house with me.  LLJ


























macuser_22
Level 15

Head of Household confusion


@LLJ wrote:

macuser-22 

  By your first written response it looks like you say that the person living with me would also need to have a child?


You mis-read what I posted.   The first sentence refers to the person claiming HOH (you), not the dependent, and only if you are married (if you are single then it does not apply).

 

Also, a 25 year old child can only be a Qualifying Relative dependent so being a student makes no difference for a child over age 23.

**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.**
LLJ
Level 1

Head of Household confusion

I guess I do not understand the difference between her being a qualify relative dependent or a fulltime student dependent at age 23?  Both of these would qualify me to be HOH if I am single, pay all the bills for the house and she lived with me the entire year, correct??  

VolvoGirl
Level 15

Head of Household confusion

Here's an article that should help.  Who is a qualifying person for Head of Household

https://ttlc.intuit.com/community/family/help/what-is-a-qualifying-person-for-head-of-household/00/2...

 

and Here's a FAQ for Head of Household

https://ttlc.intuit.com/community/family/help/do-i-qualify-for-head-of-household/00/25539

macuser_22
Level 15

Head of Household confusion


@LLJ wrote:

I guess I do not understand the difference between her being a qualify relative dependent or a fulltime student dependent at age 23?  Both of these would qualify me to be HOH if I am single, pay all the bills for the house and she lived with me the entire year, correct??  


Correct, both will qualify for HOH.  It is the requirements that are different.    From what you first posted it would appear that she qualities by the rules that I posted -

 

- she lived with you more than half the year.

- you paid more the half the total household costs for the year.

- her income was less than $4,150.

 

No problem - you qualify for HOH.

 

 

**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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LLJ
Level 1

Head of Household confusion

Thanks!!!

mb123
Returning Member

Head of Household confusion

I have filed head of household for many years.

My grand-daughter (s) have been my qualifying person, but not my dependent. My single daughter claims her as dependent.    My adult daughter and grandchild both live in my home,

 

I have been able to change my filing status on the form in the past how do I do that this year ?

SusanY1
Employee Tax Expert

Head of Household confusion

You will need to enter the data about your non-dependent qualifying person (your grand-daughter) for the program to allow selection of Head of Household.  The IRS requires listing the "qualifying person" for HoH status on returns currently. 

 

You will enter her in the area for dependents and in the follow-up questions be sure to indicate that someone else (her mother) provides more than half of her support.  You will answer that you provide "more than half of the cost of keeping the home." 

 

@mb123

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macuser_22
Level 15

Head of Household confusion


@mb123 wrote:

I have filed head of household for many years.

My grand-daughter (s) have been my qualifying person, but not my dependent. My single daughter claims her as dependent.    My adult daughter and grandchild both live in my home,

 

I have been able to change my filing status on the form in the past how do I do that this year ?


 

If you have filed that way for years then you have filed false tax returns and have probably underpaid your tax.  You should amend those years and file properly.

 

You can ONLY file HOH if you claim your granddaughter as a dependent.   There is only ONE condition where HOH can be filed without actually claiming a child as a dependent and that is when the custodial *parent* releases the dependent to other non-custodial *parent* that does not live with the child.  Only in that case can the custodial parent claim HOH.   That does not apply to anyone other than the parents of the child.

 

See the rules for HOH in IRS pub 17.  Table 2-1.

https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p17.pdf

 

 

**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.**
Bsch4477
Level 15

Head of Household confusion

Your granddaughter can’t be your qualifying person for head of household because she is the qualifying child of your daughter. 

mb123
Returning Member

Head of Household confusion

I'm afraid I need more step by step,  turbo says she has to be a dependent,  IRS says she doesn't ??

thanks

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