Author Topic: Do I claim 19 yr old son or not?  (Read 557 times)

Naomi

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Do I claim 19 yr old son or not?
« on: December 26, 2018, 05:13:48 AM »
This seems like it should be simple (maybe i'm overthinking the situation) so any advice would be great.

My son is 19 and lives with us full time. He works part time and is not a full time student. He made about $19,000 in 2018 (net of about $14,000). He does pay for his own food, clothes, phone, etc. but does not pay rent. Instead he maxed out a Roth IRA and also puts $ into a taxable account.

If I were to claim him, it's only a $500 credit, right? Because technically we probably do support him >50%.

I think he would be better filing single w/out being claimed as a dependent and then I think he would be able to claim the savers credit.

If I do charge him rent is that something I would have to claim as income? I don't want this to get too complicated, but at the same time I want to help my son as much as possible which is why I had him start investing as soon as he got a job last year.

Thanks.


wageslave23

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Re: Do I claim 19 yr old son or not?
« Reply #1 on: December 26, 2018, 11:35:49 AM »
You can't claim him because he makes more than $4,000 and is not a full time student.  If you charge him rent then yes you would need to report the income, especially if he is reporting the expense for a state deduction.  Its probably not worth it. 

Naomi

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Re: Do I claim 19 yr old son or not?
« Reply #2 on: December 26, 2018, 01:49:31 PM »
Thanks for your help.

phildonnia

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Re: Do I claim 19 yr old son or not?
« Reply #3 on: January 07, 2019, 03:28:07 PM »
I think he would be better filing single w/out being claimed as a dependent and then ...

This is a common misunderstanding.  Someone cannot choose whether they are a dependent or not.  That is, if someone could be considered a dependent on someone else's return, then they are a dependent for their own return, even if the someone else does not claim them.

As a practical matter, people may get away with horse-trading the dependency relationship for a tax advantage, but it's not strictly legal.