There are situations where a child could be a qualifying child of more than one taxpayer. In this case, tie breaker rules are used to determine which taxpayer will get to claim the child as a dependent. Once that determination is made, that taxpayer gets to claim the child for all related income tax benefits for that year.
Qualifying Child Tax Benefits
If one taxpayer is claiming a dependency exemption for a qualifying child, no other taxpayer can claim that child for any other tax benefits. This is true even if the taxpayer claiming the dependent is not eligible for other dependent related tax benefits. Other tax benefits may include the head of household status, child tax credit, child and dependent care expense credit, and earned income credit. However, you may not qualify for all these when you take the dependency exemption.
Dawn Aldridge has worked in accounting and business since 2004. Her diverse experience includes public, small business and government accounting, as well as logistics and inventory management. She holds an MBA from the University of Illinois at Springfield.