Certified Public Accountant

{2:06 minutes to read} As taxpayers, most of us know all about dependents and what defines a dependent. Most of our dependents over the years have been our children, but they can be other family members such as parents, brothers, sisters, etc.

Most of us are somewhat familiar with the rules about regular dependents:

• You must provide half of their support; and
• They must be children under 19 or full-time students (college or school) from 19–23.

With dependents other than children, there is another hurdle, and that is they must make less than the amount of the exemption, which is $4,000 in 2015. If someone other than a qualifying child makes more than that, no matter how much support you provide, they cannot be your dependent.

Medical Expense Exception

However, most people don't know that there is an exception when paying medical expenses. For example, if you have a parent who makes $7,000 on a pension (Social Security does not count in this equation), they cannot be claimed as your dependent. However, if you can prove the relationship test, and you provide support over and above their pension for such items as rent, medical expenses, utilities, etc., you can then claim any medical expenses for that person.

To reiterate, if you have a parent who could be claimed as an exemption, except for the fact that they make more than approximately $4,000 in income other than Social Security, you can still deduct their medical expenses on your tax return.

If you have any questions concerning this or any other tax matter, please contact your tax advisor or contact us at info@gannscpa.com, or 914-682-7007.

Best wishes for a blessed holiday season.

Stephen J. Ganns, CPA