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Old 01-12-2012, 06:41 PM
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18 Year Old Worker with Child

This is a little confusing, so I will try to be as clear as possible.

During 2011, my Son turned 18 and moved out on his own.
Prior to this, he lived with his Mother, but was not working.
He has a daughter that was born in January.

Since his birthday, his 17-year-old girlfriend and the child both live with and depend on him.
Prior to that, the girlfriend lived with her Mother and the grandchild lived jointly between the grandmothers.

My question is about who claims who. I know his Mother had intended to claim him as her dependant, which would include EIC.
Based on what he has told me, I think his girlfriend's mother intends to claim both her and the grandchild, which also would include EIC.
I'm not claiming anyone because none involved lived with me, although I was his only source of income prior to his birthday.

So, should his Mother claim him the same as she does every year or should he file as head of household?
If he can file on his own, can he claim the girlfriend and daughter? Does he qualify for the special credits?

The 'Moms' are confusing him by telling him what he should and shouldn't do. The truth is that they are more concerned about maximizing their own returns. He asked me for advice, but I don't know what to tell him. He works hard and is taking good care of his little family with his limited resources. I just want to make sure he gets what is rightfully his.

Son 18
• Lived with Mother prior to 18th birthday (July 25 2011)
• Lives on his own (since July 25)
• Has full time job (since July 25)...student prior to that
• Has 2 dependants- 17 year old girlfriend and his daughter (born Jan 2011)...both live with him (since July 25)

Girlfriend 17
• Lived with her Mother prior to July 25 2011
• Lives with and depends on my Son since July 25

Grandchild <1
• Lived between Grandmothers prior to July 25 2011
• Lives with and depends on my Son since July 25


Any thoughts would be much appreciated.



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Old 01-13-2012, 03:02 AM
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Posts: 5,222
“So, should his Mother claim him the same as she does every year or should he file as head of household?”--->As long as his mother claims him as her dependent on her return, he(the son) can never file his return as HOH;to file his return as a HOH, he must be single and have a qualifying child/qualifying relative who lives with him for over half the year and doesn't support himself or herself.Also, to claim him(18 YO son) as her dependent, for her 2011 return, the son , as her qualifying child, had to live for more than half the year, the son must have the same residence as her mother does. As you said, “During 2011, my Son turned 18 and moved out on his own.” As long as she lived with him for at least half the year and meets other rerquiremnts,i.e, support, age or etc, she can still claim him as her dependent. The son can’t file joint return with his 17 YO GF; as GF is NOT his legal spouse and they are NOT married.Also, his GF’s mother can claim EIC on her daughter, your son’s GF as herdaughter was under age 19 at the end of 2011 and must have lived with her for more than half of 2011. She can also claimgrandc hild for earned income credit if she meets the income criteria.
“If he can file on his own, can he claim the girlfriend and daughter? Does he qualify for the special credits?”---->UNLESS he is claimed as his mother’s dependent, he can claim his return as HOH as long as he cared for his daughter, a dependent, for over half the year, 2011. If hid GF also claims the child, he can NOT file as HOH.He can never claim his GF as a dependent for HOH.However, he can claim his GF as his dependent on his return as HOH as long as(as said previously) he meets the conditions ,i.e, support, her gross income or etc.
“Son 18 :• Lived with Mother prior to 18th birthday (July 25 2011)• Lives on his own (since July 25) • Has full time job (since July 25)...student prior to that”---->His mother can claim him as her dependent on her return as she has lived with her son for more than half the year in 2011 and as long as she meets other requirements, i.e, support or etc.
“• Has 2 dependants- 17 year old girlfriend and his daughter (born Jan 2011)...both live with him (since July 25)”---> As said, as long as he is claimed as a dependent of his mother, he can’t file his return as HOH; however, as her dependent, he needs to file his return as single, NOT as HOH.
“Girlfriend 17: Lived with her Mother prior to July 25 2011• Lives with and depends on my Son since July 25 .Grandchild <1 : Lived between Grandmothers prior to July 25 2011• Lives with and depends on my Son since July 25”----> Her mother can claim EIC on her daughter/GD as long as she meets the condition as said above.



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Old 01-13-2012, 07:22 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2012
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Thank You for your response. You really cleared it up. I suspected what you said, but wanted a second opinion before I sat and discussed it with him. It was the fact that he has lived on his own for part of the year that was really confusing me.
Thanks again.



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Old 01-13-2012, 07:32 PM
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“It was the fact that he has lived on his own for part of the year that was really confusing me.”----->As said previously, his mother can claim him as her dependent on her 2011 return as she has lived with her son for MORE than HALF the year in 2011 and as long as she meets other requirements, i.e, support or etc. Unless he is claimed as a dependent of her mother, he can file his return as HOH as long as he has cared for a dependent, the child, his qualifying child, for over half the year during 2011, and paid more than half the cost of maintaining a home.



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