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The IRS looks at who the custodial parent is when allowing a dependent to be claimed by a parent.
The custodial parent is the parent the child lived with more nights in the year.
Sometimes a divorce decree will require that a specific parent gets to claim a child for tax purposes. If the divorce decree says he gets to claim a child or all the children and he is not the custodial parent, he would need to bring her back to court and get her to sign the form 8332. This forms releases the dependency claim to him.
If he is the custodial parent and the children lived with him then he just needs to mail in his return with the children listed and attach his proof that they lived with him.
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