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Who can claim the children when one pays child support?

Working parents have what seems like a never-ending balancing act when it comes to family life, work and financial obligations. At the end of the year, many families anxiously await their income tax return refunds to help cover bills and possibly have a little left over to play with. When a Connecticut couple decides to split up, the issue of child support and tax returns can become an unpleasant factor when looking at the big picture. Who should claim the child and why?

Children can have a significant impact on taxes during filing season. With the current child tax credit sitting at $2,000, many parents who are going through a divorce want to claim the tax credit to lessen the tax impact. If not stipulated in the custody or divorce agreement, the Internal Revenue Service has some guidelines that are used to decide who will rightfully take the child tax credit.

The IRS will look at the relationship between the child and the parent. A parent who is involved will more than likely get a point as opposed to the parent who has nothing to do with a child. If a child lives with a parent most of the year, the IRS will also consider the financial burden of the parent with residence and custodial custody. If neither of these situations apply, the IRS may then look at the income and give the deduction to the parent with the highest adjusted gross income.

The dissolution of a marriage, especially one involving children, can be upsetting and emotionally taxing. Understanding and adhering to the laws surrounding child support and child custody during the split are extremely important to help avoid any confusion when it comes time to complete taxes. A family law attorney can help guide those seeking child custody or child support to understand their rights under Connecticut law.

Source:, "Who claims the children on taxes after divorce?", March 16, 2018

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