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how to prevent my parents' claiming of me as a dependent?

antoniorayantonioray Posts: 849User Awaiting Email Confirmation Member
so apparently, my dad filled out his tax forms this year with me listed as a dependent. He didn't consult me at all, and just went forth with it.

What's stopping him from doing that for the rest of his life?

I don't want to be claimed as a dependent anymore because it doesn't do me any good and it could delay my financial independence, or at least a noncustodial waiver.

According to Brown's noncustodial waiver, I must not have been claimed as a dependent by the noncustodial for the past year or so.

Is there a way I can challenge his claiming of me as a dependent?
Post edited by antonioray on
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Replies to: how to prevent my parents' claiming of me as a dependent?

  • mom2collegekidsmom2collegekids Posts: 57,833Registered User Senior Member
    What's stopping him from doing that for the rest of his life?

    I think this is how it works...others can correct me if I'm wrong....

    He's supposed to have contributed to at least half of your expenses. Does he?

    He can't claim you for the rest of his life. When you are providing for a majority of your expenses, then you claim yourself on your taxes. If he tries to also claim you, that may cause him (or you) to have to justify who contributes to most of your expenses. If he can't prove that he does, he'll get that exemption taken away (meaning that he'll get a bill for that deduction that he wrongly took.) Of course, it's best to give your dad a "heads up" for the years that you are going to claim yourself.

    So, when you're providing for most of your expenses, tell your dad that you'll be claiming yourself on your taxes, and therefore he cannot.

    Did you earned a lot of money in 2009 and provide for more than 50% of your support? It's hard for a child to do that if he's living in a parents' home, unless he pays rent and such. Does your dad provide your health insurance? What does your dad pay for?


    However, remember it's hard for a student under 24 to get independent status.
  • thumper1thumper1 Posts: 32,614Registered User Senior Member
    Antonio..your parents are well within their rights to claim you as a dependent as you have lived in their home and they have provided more than half of your support. They do not have to "consult you" to do this. Did you earn more than half of your own support this year? If not, then that is that.

    If your parents are providing financial support for you...how would you expect to get a non-custodial waiver anyway...or establish independent student status?

    Yes...if there are immediate extenuating circumstances (like you have been removed from the home due to abuse...oh...be prepared to document that to Brown), this might provide sufficient evidence that you deserve a dependency override.

    Truthfully, I'm perplexed by your situation. Your parents seemingly are providing support for you right now...or at least did for the bulk of 2009. That is the year that matters for the 2009 taxes. If that is the case...do you expect THEM to take a tax hit because YOU want a dependency override?

    In our household, we TOLD the kids when we were prepared to stop declaring them on our taxes...and it was when WE no longer had more than 1/2 of the financial bills for them. In other words...when they were self supporting...they could declare themselves.
  • thumper1thumper1 Posts: 32,614Registered User Senior Member
    Oh...to answer the title of the thread "How to prevent my parents claiming of me as a dependent?"

    Easy answer...earn all the money you need to support yourself...be prepared to document that you have earned enough to pay your own rent, utilities, clothing, food, health insurance, car insurance, etc. If you did this for 2009, no problem. BUT keep in mind that if you earned THAT much money, YOUR income will be reported on the FAFSA. As an independent student, a good chuck of your income could be presumed to be available for your college expenses.
  • tokenadulttokenadult Posts: 17,473Super Moderator Senior Member
    to answer the title of the thread "How to prevent my parents claiming of me as a dependent?"

    Easy answer...earn all the money you need to support yourself...be prepared to document that you have earned enough to pay your own rent, utilities, clothing, food, health insurance, car insurance, etc.

    That's it. That's how it is done.
  • antoniorayantonioray Posts: 849User Awaiting Email Confirmation Member
    well to be honest, my dad has been unemployed for the last 6 years and all he does is sit in the basement while my mom pays the bills.

    He didnt provide any direct support; if you mean that he is indirectly supporting me because he pays for the house I live in, then I don't think he's doing that either
  • mom2collegekidsmom2collegekids Posts: 57,833Registered User Senior Member
    Antonio...

    Your mom should be the one claiming you on her taxes. Why is your dad claiming you? Why does your MOM allow that? She's the one supporting you.

    I don't understand a few things...

    1) you say that your DAD turns off the electricity so you're worried that you won't get college phone calls. You say that your dad does this so you'll sleep. That suggests that he does this LATE at night so you won't be surfing the net all night. How does that stop you from getting phone calls? What time does your dad turn off the electricity?

    2) you say that your mom pays all the bills (that means you aren't independent in any fashion). Yet, earlier, you first filed a FAFSA using only your dad's "income" - I realize you corrected that once you were told that was wrong.

    3) Since it's your mom's home, why does your dad have ANY say in whether you can live there or not? Your dad is a virtual guest in that home. Why does your mom give up her power to someone who has no power. Why does she allow him to turn off the electricity?
  • momofthreeboysmomofthreeboys Posts: 10,888Registered User Senior Member
    I don't think it matters very much if your dad did or didn't use you as a dependent on his income taxes, your mom might have a beef about that but you have no valid point to argue about this since one or the other of them did provide more than 50% of your support in 2009. I do hope you are not hanging your hat on colleges granting you an independent status and that you have some options in the works or an acceptance that is/are affordable for your particular situation. You go to a very strong HS -- presumably that has a strong guidance office...is someone in the guidance office helping you at all?
  • antoniorayantonioray Posts: 849User Awaiting Email Confirmation Member
    1. around 11 PM. Yea, he's doing it late at night but he doesn't turn it back on until I get home the next day. I get home around 5:30 from school and college's won't stay late just to call me, I'm sure.

    2. both of my parents are about as financially illiterate as they come. My mom maintained a strict mantra of "you(dad) take him(me), I'll deal with the daughter"

    3. She doesn't care because it doesn't affect her in any way. She'll be asleep and she gets home even later than I do, when the power will already be on. I have talked about this issue with my mom, why she allows my dad to stay. Soon after their divorce, my mom started fooling around with someone else and they were actively trying to evict my father on the basis that he's dead weight. I think the judge allowed him to stay because he paid most of the bills in the time period ending in 2004, when he lost his job. The postdivorce affair ended abruptly and my mom started not to care anymore and cited moral reasons for letting him stay--that kicking him out when he has nowhere to go(can't buy a plane ticket to his relatives in another country) would be inhumane.

    I mean it's obviously not my decision to make whether we should let him stay or force him to leave, but if it were...

    Edit: Damn, how did you know what HS i go to? I mean I have posted it once before, but that is some really skilled snooping...

    and I used to have a family counselor from an independent firm who was hired by my school, but the sessions ended when things simmered down 2 years ago
  • momofthreeboysmomofthreeboys Posts: 10,888Registered User Senior Member
    ^^Mostly concerned that you haven't only applied to reachy, reachy schools that don't/won't give you very good financial aid. You don't need to divulge your applications list, just make sure you have your butt covered and will have some place to go in the fall. The guidance couselor comment was primarily for focus on your current applications more than your family situation.
  • swimcatsmomswimcatsmom Posts: 14,871Registered User Senior Member
    For a child under 19 or under 24 if full time in college the tax rules do not require a parent to have provided more than half a child's support to claim them as a dependent (for someone other than their own child their is a >50% support rule, not for their own child). Scholarship and grant money does not count as part of the support a child is providing for themselves. The rule is that a child can not have provided more than half their own support. Until you are providing more than half your support your parent's are well within their rights to claim you as a dependent. Which one does so is between them.

    What can you do to prevent them from claiming you. Simple. Provide more than half your own support. That means half of all your own support - housing, food, clothes, insurance etc etc
  • sybbie719sybbie719 Posts: 16,454Super Moderator Senior Member
    Based on what you have presented so far:

    You do nto meet the criteria for a non-custodial waiver as both your parents live in the house with you. a parent who does not support the child is not grounds for a waiver.

    Your situation on face does not qualify you for professional judgement to be deemed independent.

    For most schools if you start out as a dependent student you will remain a dependent student. Should you be come independent based on one of the crtiteria the fafsa sets for being independent, the school can still deem you dependent when it comes down to giving out their money.
  • antoniorayantonioray Posts: 849User Awaiting Email Confirmation Member
    extremely hypothetical question:

    If I make a dollar over the next year and my parents give me nothing at all, can claim myself?

    Also, given the minimal support my dad has given me over the past year and yet he still claimed me, how would I know that he won't claim me next year when I claim myself?

    I know I couldn't have claimed myself this past year, but my dad did so even though my mother may have been the one that should have done so.
  • thumper1thumper1 Posts: 32,614Registered User Senior Member
    According to Brown's noncustodial waiver, I must not have been claimed as a dependent by the noncustodial for the past year or so.

    Antonio...I can't imagine that you are going to get a non-custodial waiver for someone who LIVES IN THE SAME HOUSE as you do. For FAFSA purposes, your MOM is your custodial parent. Period. For Profile purposes...if your dad has no income or assets (as you say) it will have no impact on Brown's financial aid award to you. No income or assets...no possible way to contribute...no money. If it's just that your dad won't COMPLETE the form...that sounds like an issue that needs to get resolved. He lives in the same house as you. NCP waivers are granted for kids who have no way of FINDING their NCP, not for NCPs who live in the same house as you.

    I hope you have some FAFSA only schools on your college application list. It is March 21...admissions decision are being sent now. Finaid application DEADLINES are long past due.
  • thumper1thumper1 Posts: 32,614Registered User Senior Member
    If I make a dollar over the next year and my parents give me nothing at all, can claim myself?

    LISTEN AGAIN Antonio. You would need to demonstrate that YOUR earnings were enough to cover ALL ALL ALL of your expenses...housing, utilities, food, clothing, health insurance, car if you have one, car insurance, EVERYTHING. Unless you can do so...your claim for independent status based on YOU supporting yourself would be denied.

    Can you support yourself on $1 a year?? I doubt it.
  • swimcatsmomswimcatsmom Posts: 14,871Registered User Senior Member
    extremely hypothetical question:

    If I make a dollar over the next year and my parents give me nothing at all, can claim myself?
    No. You would have to make enough to show that you can support yourself on it.

    I doubt you will be eligible for a non custodial waiver as your father is quite obviously in your life. Non custodial waivers generally require the parent to be absent from the childs life for several years. But if your father has no income as you say then why are you so worried about a non custodial waiver? If he has little or no income then his information will have little or no impact.
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