There are a number of complex issues that a person must navigate following a divorce. One of these is taxes and what status a person will claim once the divorce is complete. While it offers several advantages, there are also important eligibility requirements to consider when filing as a head of household, particularly when compared to filing single or as married filing separately.
The Eligibility for Head of Household Status
In most situations, the Head of Household is determined by the custody arrangement between parents. The parent twho has the children more than one half of the year is able to file for Head of Household status. The only way that both parents are able to file as Head of the Household is if they have more than one child and each parent has at least one different child living with them for half the year or greater.
To qualify as Head of Household, a person must satisfy several requirements, which include the following:
- The person must maintain a household for a child
- The person must be unmarried at the end of the year or living apart from a spouse for a period of more than six months
- The household must be the person’s home and must also be the primary home of the qualifying dependent for more than half of the year
- The person must provide more than half the cost of maintaining the household
- The person must be a United States citizen or resident alien for the entire tax year
Even if you allow a former spouse to claim you as a dependent, it is still possible to file as Head of Household.
In many cases if a person qualifies as a Head of Household, the individual will also be determined to qualify for the Dependent Care Credit, the Earned Income Tax Credit, and other rebates that arise during the tax year.
Taking Tax Deductions for Divorce Advice
In addition to filing as a Head of Household, it is also important for many people who are preparing to file taxes after a divorce to consider that the IRS sometimes allows a person to deduct legal fees and court costs associated with obtaining tax advice in connection with a divorce. Some individuals are even able to deduct the fees that they paid to accountants, actuaries, and appraisers. To successfully obtain these deductions, it is often a wise idea to obtain a list of billable time spent with your divorce attorney. Fortunately, a knowledgeable family law attorney understands these processes and can make sure that you obtain the largest deduction possible.
Speak with a Knowledgeable Family Law AttorneyThe tax issues involved with divorce have the potential to cause a number of serious problems. This is why if you have questions about the process, you should not hesitate to speak with a knowledgeable lawyer. Contact Vayman & Teitelbaum P.C. today to schedule an initial free consultation.