Can I claim head of household?

September 30, 2008

Date:   Sat, 26 Jan 2008
From:   Ashley

I am single and live with my boyfriend, mother, stepfather, and younger brother. I own the house we live in together with my boyfriend. Is there any way that I could claim head of household?

Answer

Date:   31 Jan 2008

Hello Ashley,

In order to qualify, you would have to have a qualifying dependent. In order to do this, someone couldn't have income above the personal exemption amount ($3,400 for 2007), you would have to provide more than one-half that person's support, and no one else could claim that person as a dependent. The best candidate would be your brother, but is your mother willing to give up the exemption?

This is actually a more complicated question than you might think. I suggest that you get Publication 501 at the IRS web site, www.irs.gov and study it.

Good luck!
Mike Gray

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