Coronavirus (COVID-19) Notice. Learn More ›

Can You Claim Your Partner as a Dependent on Your Tax Return?

There are five tests you must meet to claim your partner as a tax dependent.

If you financially support your partner (heterosexual or same-sex), you may be able to file a tax return as a single person and claim your partner as a dependent. To be able to do this legally, you must meet the following five tests.

Support. The supporting partner must provide at least 50% of the other partner's total support for the year. Support includes food, shelter, clothing, medical and dental care, education, entertainment, and just about anything you can think of.

Citizen or resident. The supported person must be a U.S. citizen, resident alien, or citizen of Canada or Mexico.

Income. The supported person's taxable income cannot exceed $2,900. Nontaxable money, such as gifts, welfare benefits, and nontaxable Social Security benefits don't count toward gross income.

Relationship. Under IRS regulations, a person who lived in your home for the entire year can be considered a dependent as long as the relationship does not violate local law. Our advice: If you meet the other four tests but may be violating the law in a state where fornication, cohabitation, or sodomy is still against the law, go ahead and claim your partner as a dependent anyway. Recent court decisions have made those laws questionable at best, and the worst that can happen is that the IRS won't allow your deduction and your tax bill will be recomputed without the deduction.

Unmarried person. If the supported person is married and files a joint tax return with his spouse, the supporting partner in this relationship cannot claim him as a dependent. There's one exception: If the married couple did not earn enough to have to file a tax return and did so only to get a refund, the supporting partner can claim the dependent.

Client Reviews
★★★★★
Mr. Clay exceeded my expectations. I was fighting for custody and child support with a bully of an ex. He was tough with the other lawyer and made sure that I was not taken advantage of. His knowledge and experience was very apparent. I highly recommend Mr. Clay to anyone needing legal aid. K. Aleman
★★★★★
Absolute pro! If you need a Lawyer that truly understand law and can answer any question you present him with, Mr. Clay is your man! I am extremely happy to have him represent me! Picking a lawyer is like picking a real estate agent. So many, so it can be hard but let me tell you I am 100% happy that I picked him and I will forever use him in the future and recommended him to anyone in the San Antonio area that is looking for legal representation. P. Martinez
★★★★★
Mr Clay represented me during my divorce in 2011. He was absolutely incredible throughout the entire process. He is very reasonable and is hands down one of the best attorneys in San Antonio, Texas. I highly recommend him to anyone looking for an attorney!!!!! B. Johnson
Contact Us Free Consultation
J. Michael Clay 210-694-5205