Who Claims a Child on Taxes After a Divorce in California?

Over the course of 2020, family law experts saw a significant increase in divorces throughout the United States. While divorce is, of course, always complicated to a certain degree, one of the often-overlooked aspects of divorce is which parent has to claim a child on taxes after a divorce. The answer to this question is relatively simple when one parent has sole custody of a child, however, this is not the case when both parents share child custody. Please continue reading and speak with our knowledgeable Los Angeles divorce attorneys to learn more about which parent may have to claim a child on taxes after a divorce in California. Here are some of the questions you may have:

Will I have to claim my child on taxes if I am the custodial parent?

In most cases, yes. The parent who spends more time with the child over the course of a year (the custodial parent) is regarded as the primary caretaker of a child when it comes to filing taxes, which is why the custodial parent will, in most cases, receive most tax breaks. As long as you file as head of household, you will most likely qualify for a tax rate that is lower than custodial parents who file separately as single or married individuals.

What happens if my former spouse and I both share custody of our child equally?

In many cases, parents will have a 50/50 custody agreement. This is perfectly fine, and in fact, in most cases, this is the best case scenario for their child. That being said, when it comes to claiming a child as a dependent, only one parent can do so. However, if you and your former spouse are on amicable terms, there is a very simple solution to this problem that will allow both of you to receive benefits: alternating which parent claims your child as a dependent each year. By doing so, you can ensure that you each receive tax benefits in the fairest way possible without having to fight over who gets what. In other cases, if you have an open and trustworthy relationship with your former spouse, you could also disclose the dollar amount of tax benefits you will receive and simply split those benefits yourselves without having to go back and forth claiming benefits each year. For any further questions, speak with our California divorce attorneys today.

Contact our experienced Los Angeles firm

Divorce and family law issues are notoriously complicated and personal, which is why you must hire an attorney with years of experience, as well as the compassion and skill needed to handle these sensitive matters. For the qualified, dedicated legal representation you and your family deserve and need, contact Zitser Family Law Group, APC today.

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