Question

My child is over age 24, lives with me, and is a student. Can I claim him as a dependent?

Answer

Possibly, since your child is over age 24. The fact that he lives with you and goes to college doesn’t affect dependent qualifications.

There are two dependent requirements wherein you can claim your adult child over the age 24 as a dependent:

  • If your child is permanently and totally disabled
  • If your child’s gross income is less than $4,200 for the year, and you provided more than half of his total support for the year

Regardless of the situation, these must be true for you to claim your child as a dependent:

  • Your child must not file a joint return unless he or she is only filing to claim a refund. Also, there would be no tax liability for either the child or the child’s spouse if they were to file separate returns.
  • The child must be one of those:
    • U.S. citizen
    • U.S. resident alien
    • U.S. national
    • Resident of Canada or Mexico

The person claiming the child can’t qualify as a dependent on someone else’s return.

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