Can I claim my spouse as a dependent?
You can’t claim spouses as dependents whether he or she maintains residency with you or not. However, you can claim an exemption for your spouse in certain circumstances:
- If you and your spouse are married filing jointly, you can claim one exemption for your spouse and one exemption for yourself.
- If you’re married filing separately, you can claim an exemption for your spouse only if your spouse:
- Had no gross income
- Isn’t filing a return
- Wasn’t the dependent of another taxpayer, even if the other taxpayer doesn’t actually claim your spouse as a dependent
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