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Lev, Tax Advisor
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 29497
Experience:  Taxes, Immigration, Labor Relations
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I am a single mom and a very busy executive. I determined

Customer Question

I am a single mom and a very busy executive. I determined that it is cheaper to pay my mother to be available to me and my kids than for her to try and get a job to make ends meet with her retirement.
I pay her about $16,000 a year and would like to pay her more but I do not claim that money at all right now. Is there a way for me to pay her as a domestic employee or assistant or something so that I lower my tax burden? I would gladly pay her tax for her if it increases her tax burden. My son is in school so this is not full time daycare. She does so much more than that for me.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Tax
Expert:  Lev replied 1 year ago.

You definitely may have your mother as your household employee.

That is not an issue.

However - that generally would not affect your tax liability as that will be considered personal expenses.

You may be able to claim the child and dependent care credit if you paid expenses for the care of a qualifying individual to enable you to work.

The total expenses that you may use to calculate the credit should not be more than $3,000 (one qualifying individual) or $6,000 (two or more qualifying individuals).

All other expenses you might pay to your mother are NOT deductible.

Your dependent qualifying child who is under age 13 is generally considered a a qualifying individual for purposes of claiming the child and dependent care credit even your child is in school.

Please be aware that wages you pay to your mother are not subject to social security or Medicare taxes - but will be subject to income tax for your mother.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
she and I both have to pay taxes on that money? I'm confused. When I pay an employee it reduces my profit from my business thwrfore reducing my gross income. Why would I ever claim the money I am paying her if my tax burden doesn't change but hers gets bigger? So anyone with employees doesn't get to claim the employee as an expense?
Expert:  Lev replied 1 year ago.

Each of you will be taxed on own income.

You file your own income and you are taxable on your income based on Gross income, foiling status, deductions, etc.

Correspondingly your mother is taxed on HER income.

When you pay YOUR employee for services performed for your business - that is generally a deductible business expense.

But if you pay to someone who provides personal services for you - that is your personal expense and is not deductible.

Here is the stature

(a) General rule Except as otherwise expressly provided in this chapter, no deduction shall be allowed for personal, living, or family expenses.

So far - PERSONAL expenses are specifically prohibited for deductions.

Expert:  Lev replied 1 year ago.

If you are specifically looking to deduct your BUSINESS expenses - these expenses are usually deductible if the business operates to make a profit.

Business expenses are the cost of carrying on a trade or business.

You may have business expenses as an employee - that is OK.

To be deductible, a business expense must be both ordinary and necessary. An ordinary expense is one that is common and accepted in your trade or business. A necessary expense is one that is helpful and appropriate for your trade or business. An expense does not have to be indispensable to be considered necessary.

As an employee, you must use Form 2106 to figure your deduction for employee business expenses and attach it to your Form 1040, U.S. Individual Income Tax Return. You then take the deductible expenses on Form 1040, Schedule A, as a miscellaneous itemized deduction subject to the 2% of adjusted gross income limit.