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lwpat, Attorney
Category: Legal
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Experience:  Actively practicing trial attorney
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I claimed my second cousin on my 2010 tax return now Im being

Resolved Question:

I claimed my second cousin on my 2010 tax return now I'm being audited by the IRS. What documents would be sufficient proof of relationship to second cousin other than a birth certificate.
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  lwpat replied 5 years ago.
Are they a child or adult? Where did they live and why? Who paid for their support?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
they are both children. both of them lived w/me for about 8 months in empire, CA.. their parents were divorcing things were hostile at their house at that time. i was supporting them.
Expert:  lwpat replied 5 years ago.
Here are the rules.

Section 152(d)(1) provides, in part, that to be a “qualifying relative” of a taxpayer, an individual must: (A) bear a certain relationship to the taxpayer, (B) have gross income for the calendar year that is less than the exemption amount (as defined in section 151(d)), and (C) derive over one-half of his or her support for the calendar year from the taxpayer. In addition, section 152(d)(1)(D) requires that the individual not be a qualifying child of the taxpayer or of “any other taxpayer” for the taxable year. Section 152(d)(2)(H) provides that a qualifying relative may include an individual who has the same principal place of abode as the taxpayer and who is a member of the taxpayer’s household.

Example 1.

A supports as members of his household for the taxable year an unrelated friend, B, and her 3-year-old child, C. B has no gross income, is not required by section 6012 to file an income tax return, and does not file an income tax return for the taxable year. Accordingly, because B does not have a filing requirement and did not file an income tax return, C is not treated as a qualifying child of B or any other taxpayer, and A may claim both B and C as his qualifying relatives, provided all other requirements of sections 151 and 152 to qualify for the deduction are met.


Based on the example, the parties do not even have to be related to you. The question is whether they were a qualifying child of any other party. My guess is that one of the parents claimed them. You need to show that they resided with you and that you provided their support.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.

What documents are acceptable to verify relationship with a first cousin and her daughter.

Expert:  lwpat replied 5 years ago.
Marriage licenses and birth certificates.
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