Academic journal article Journal of Accountancy

Taking Back the Dependency Exemption

Academic journal article Journal of Accountancy

Taking Back the Dependency Exemption

Article excerpt

In divorce situations, the custodial parent is generally entitled to take the dependency exemptions for the children (IRC section 152(e)). This applies as long as both parents provide more than half the children's support and the children live with either or both parents for more than six months each year.

However, this can be changed if the custodial parent signs Form 8332, Release of Claim to Exemption for Child of Divorced or Separated Parents, and agrees not to claim a particular child as a dependent for a particular year--then the noncustodial parent may claim that child by attaching the signed form to his or her tax return.

Form 8332 allows the custodial parent to release a claim for the deduction in the current year, specified future years, or all future years. It contains no cancellation date. The custodial parent need only sign the form once, but the noncustodial parent must attach it to his or her return every year.

The IRS recently reported it had received a large number of calls on its toll-free telephone lines from taxpayers inquiring if form 8332 could be nullified. …

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