Question

What are the requirements for claiming my parents as dependents?

Answer

To qualify as your dependents, your parents must meet these conditions:

  • Your parents’ gross income must be less than $4,150 each. Tax-exempt income, like certain Social Security benefits, isn’t included in gross income.
  • You must provide more than half of their support for the entire year. Both taxable and nontaxable income is included in the amount of support your parents provide themselves. If they own their own home and don’t maintain residency with you, the fair rental value of their home is part of the support they provide for themselves.
  • Your parents must be one of these:
    • U.S. citizen
    • U.S. national
    • Resident of the United States, Canada, or Mexico
  • Your parents can’t file a joint return. This is true unless both of these apply:
    • They only file the return to claim a refund of taxes withheld or estimated payments.
    • There would be no tax liability for either the parent or spouse if filing separate returns.

Related Topics

Related Resources

How Does Changing Jobs Affect Your Tax Return?

Changing jobs can come with tax implications like job search and moving expense deductions. Learn more about these potential benefits at H&R Block.

Student Loan Interest Deduction

Learn how to deduct student loan interest with H&R Block. Get information about qualified education expenses and see if a student loan tax deduction applies to you.

What Is Virtual Tax Preparation?

Virtual tax preparations let you complete your taxes online from the comfort of your home. Find out how easy remote tax preparations can be at H&R Block.

What’s the Difference? Enrolled Agent vs. CPA

What’s the difference between an enrolled agent (EA) vs. a certified public accountant (CPA)? Explore the roles of EAs and CPAs at H&R Block.