Originally Posted by purilokesh
I am on a work visa H1-B. My wife also came here in USA with my son on July 4th, 2011. My wife and I filled 2011 taxes as resident alien.
While going through substantial presence test in Pub 519 I got to know that if a person never visited USA in immediate previous years they can use next years to determine his residency(Known as First Year choice). I am not sure if the same criterion is applicable for children too? Though My son was present for 181 days in 2011 but he is living with us continuously in USA since 2011.
While going through substantial presence test in Pub 519 I got to know that if a person never visited USA in immediate previous years they can use next years to determine his residency(Known as First Year choice). I am not sure if the same criterion is applicable for children too?=========>>>> ok as you were married and your wife was with you on a H-4 visa, I guess, you can both choose to be treated as resident aliens, regardless of whether you entered the us before or after July 3rd of 2011. as you arrived before July 3rd,2011, you are already dual-status as said. But if you arrived after July 2nd,2011, then, you would have to use the First Year Choice option and had to file the First Year Choice statement, then meet the requirements for choosing to file as a resident alien as well. These requirements are a non-resident alien at the beginning of the year;are a resident alien at the end of the tax year; are married at the end of the year.Your spouse must join you in this choice.The results/consequences of this choice are; You and your spouse are treated are treated as U.S. resident for the entireyear of 2011 for income tax purposes; You and your spouse are taxed on all of your world-wide income.You and your spouse must file a joint income tax return for 2011.
Neither you nor your wife can make this choice again in later tax years after 2011, even you are divorced, separated or remarried.
Note; H-1, H-1B, L-1 visa holders, being married allows you to file jointly with your spouse. This enables you to claim your spouse's personal exemption and also allows you to claim a double Standard Deduction. Further, filing jointly allows you to claim the Dependent Care Credit which is not available to you if you file separately.
Though My son was present for 181 days in 2011 but he is living with us continuously in USA since 2011.========>>>>>>>>So asllongas you met other requirements to claim your son as your dependent, then as a US resident for tax purposes, you can claim your son on your 2011 reutrn;your son will a need to have an itin. your son must live with you for more than half the year of 2011. More than half a year means, at minimum, six months and one day. If you share custody, you may want to keep a log of where the child spends the night in your calendar.