Sacramento Family Law Attorney explains how to claim a domestic partner as a dependent.
If you financially support your domestic partner (heterosexual or same-sex), you may be able to file a tax return as a single person and claim your partner as a dependent. To be able to do this legally, you must meet the following five tests.
Support. The supporting partner must provide at least 50% of the other domestic partner’s total support for the year. Support includes food, shelter, clothing, medical and dental care, education, entertainment, and just about anything you can think of.
Citizen or resident. The supported person must be a U.S. citizen, resident alien, or citizen of Canada or Mexico.
Income. The supported person’s taxable income cannot exceed $2,900. Nontaxable money, such as gifts, welfare benefits, and nontaxable Social Security benefits do not count toward gross income.
Relationship. Under IRS regulations, a person who lived in your home for the entire year can be considered a dependent as long as the relationship does not violate local law. One frequently used option recommended by family law attorneys is to go ahead and claim your domestic partner as a dependent if you meet the other four tests, even if you live in a state where you may be violating the law in a state because fornication, cohabitation, or sodomy are still against the law. Recent court decisions have made those laws questionable at best, and the worst that can happen is that the IRS won’t allow your deduction and your tax bill will be recomputed without the deduction.
Unmarried person. If the supported person is married and files a joint tax return with his spouse, the supporting partner in this relationship cannot claim him as a dependent. There’s one exception: If the married couple did not earn enough to have to file a tax return and did so only to get a refund, the supporting partner can claim the dependent. Consult a family law attorney if you are in doubt about this.
Here at Sagaria Law, we offer a full range of family law and legal services including divorce, paternity, adoption, child custody and visitation matters, child support, spousal support, alimony, juvenile dependency, domestic violence, division of property, grandparent visitation and custody, etc. We have seven Northern California locations including San Jose, San Francisco, Redwood City, Fremont, Salinas, Roseville and Sacramento. We offer a free thirty minute consultation, either in person at any of our offices, or over the phone. Call our offices today and we can connect you with an attorney immediately or we can schedule your free consultation with one of our family law attorneys : (408) 279-2288 or (800) 941-6730 or visit www.sagarialaw.com.