What does family law have to do with taxes?

On behalf of Stange Law Firm, PC posted in Family Law on Tuesday, March 14, 2017.

Many people in Missouri and throughout the United States are beginning a mad rush to file their tax returns on time. Depending on an individual situation, the process can be rather simple and uneventful or extremely complicated and wrought with challenge. What makes the latter occur can be anything from complex business issues to family law situations, such as pending child adoption or custody arrangement.

There are federal tax laws and state-regulated issues that must be addressed when tax return time rolls around. With regard to federal income tax forms, one of the most frequently asked questions has to do with who can be claimed as dependents. Such questions may be especially pertinent to parents currently navigating the child adoption or foster care processes.

To claim a child as a dependent on one’s federal tax form, certain criteria must exist. One prerequisite is that the child in question must have been living in the household for six months or more during the current tax year. An exception is for children born on a date that does not meet dependency test criteria; such children are to be considered as having lived in the household the entire year (so long as that child never lived anywhere else since birth).

If the adoption process has begun, and the child being adopted has resided in the home for six months or more (yet the adoption has not been finalized) he or she meets the residency requirement for dependency. Tax complications are certainly not the only issues that can arise during the child adoption process in Missouri. Anyone seeking guidance for particular concerns can request consultation with an experienced family law attorney.

Source:, “Claiming dependents on taxes: A How-to Guide“, Kay Bell, March 3, 2017

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