Is my 18-year-old former stepson my dependent?
August 22, 2011
Date: Wed, 27 Jun 2007
Subject: Question about Claiming former Step son as dependent.
Is my 18-year-old former stepson considered my dependent? He lived with me for the first 13 years of his life, before I was divorced from his father. His father passed away two years ago, when my former stepson was 16.
The boy lives with me full time. I will support him through his last year of high school and through college. I am also adding him to my health and dental insurance.
Date: 2 Jul 2007
The answer is more difficult than you might think.
Since he is no longer your stepson, he is no longer a "qualifying child".
You can claim him as a dependent while he is living in your home and you are providing more than half of his support, providing he does not have gross income exceeding $3,400 for 2007.
Has he applied for social security benefits as an orphan of his father?
Consider legally adopting him to get the benefits of being able to continue claiming a dependent exemption when he is a full-time student through age 23, despite his income level. You should get legal advice about your responsibilities and update your will before taking this step.
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