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Parenting Q & A: Teens and taxes, who can claim this boy?

By January 6, 2009

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Question: "I am a 16-year-old and I got my first job this past year and I was wondering if I could file for my income tax on my own or does my mother have to claim me?" ~ Justin

From Denise: "Filing taxes on your own and claiming yourself on your taxes are two different things. You’ll need to file if you have made a certain amount of money, check our teens and taxes article for specifics, or if you just want a refund of the money they took out of your pay. But, your mother can claim you as a dependant if she is the one who supported you this year. You can read more about who claims a qualifying child here.

Congratulations on getting your first job. Hopefully taxes won’t be as confusing as the years go by."

Asking our community of parents: Do you have anything to add? Please feel free to post it in the comments area.

January 6, 2009 at 11:08 pm
(1) ParentingHelp says:

I recommend that you file your own return but do not claim yourself and let your mother claim you so that she can get the reduction for you. This way you will get back the taxes that were held out of checks.

Of course, if you make more than a certain amount, the amount will be in your instructions, then you will be required to file and claim yourself. In 2007, I think this amount was a little over $5,000. Look in your 2008 tax info to get the exact amount for 2008.

January 12, 2009 at 1:17 am
(2) Jennifer says:

I was wondering about: 17 year old worked for about 6 months out of the year. (approx.) and his dad is on disability, child receives a monthly SSI check cus of dad on SSIDI, and also worked. Son lives with dad. Will dad file and claim son including work and SSI income? son gets close to 300/mo. SSI and earned about 4,000.00 or less from working.

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