Hello. The IRS changed the rules several years ago regarding which parent can claim a child in a divorce situation. Parents are no longer permitted to elect who claims the child -- and the child can only be claimed by the parent where the child resides more than 50% of the time. If you truly have a 50/50 residential split, then the parent whose address the child uses for school and other purposes would be the parent that can claim the deduction. If one parent gets caught claiming the child wrongfully, that parent can be subject to fines and penalties from the IRS as well as a loss of the child tax credit and/or the earned income credit if the parent's income level puts the parent in a tax bracket where those credits are available to them.
When I called the IRS, they said they made no such change to the rules.
THere were changes to the rules that the parent that the child spends the greater number of nights with is considered the custodial parent -- but there are additional provisions to qualify as well.. Here is a good article summarizing what the changes were but they apply to agreements from 2009 and forward -- http://financialdivorceblog.com/2010/01/child-dependent-exemption-tax-deduction-and-divorce/ When did you actually sign the divorce agreement? and if you are making changes to it, the question arises whether or not the amendment will fall under this change in the rules.
The parenting plan that stated the non-custodial parent could claim the child was in 2006. The GAL submitted and both parties signed a temporary parenting plan in April 2008.
The temporary parenting plan changed my step-daughters residential time from 50/50 in each household to home with us full-time except every other weekend. With the other household's time being limited or restricted because of recurring emotional and physical abuse. My husband is the custodial parent and has sole decision making rights. The temporary parenting plan was in effect until February 2009, when a permanent parenting plan was signed. This parenting plan was the same except that holidays and special occasions were added.
Also, the parents were never married.
The fact that the permanent parenting plan was signed in Feb 2009 could add a wrinkle in here where they have to go by the change in the rules. I am going to send this question over to our tax experts because of that 2009 change. You will not be charged for this time with me.
In the past we were told that previous agreement were void as soon as we signed a new agreement.
Please press the ACCEPT button so I may be credited and paid for my time by Justanswer.com, and so my PRO BONO work for the disabled may continue into 2011. ARE YOU A SUBSCRIPTION CUSTOMER? Please ACCEPT on all helpful answers – there is NO CHARGE TO YOU and it assures you my assistance in the future. You may always follow up with me after doing so. Positive feedback and a BONUS added to your donation are also always appreciated. Thank you and the best of luck.
DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.
The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).