skip navigation
Search Help
Navigation Help

Tax Map Index
ABCDEFGHI
JKLMNOPQR
STUVWXYZ#

International
Tax Topic Index

Affordable Care Act
Tax Topic Index

Exempt Organization
Tax Topic Index

FAQs
Forms
Publications
Tax Topics
Worksheets

Comments
About Tax Map

IRS.gov Website
Publication 596
taxmap/pubs/p596-010.htm#en_us_publink1000298540

Rule 10—You Cannot Be a Qualifying Child of Another Taxpayer(p14)

rule
You are a qualifying child of another taxpayer (such as your parent, guardian, or foster parent) if all of the following statements are true.
  1. You are that person's son, daughter, stepchild, foster child, or a descendant of any of them. Or, you are that person's brother, sister, half brother, half sister, stepbrother, stepsister, or a descendant of any of them.
  2. You were:
    1. Under age 19 at the end of the year and younger than that person (or that person's spouse, if the person files jointly),
    2. Under age 24 at the end of the year, a student, and younger than that person (or that person's spouse, if the person files jointly), or
    3. Permanently and totally disabled, regardless of age.
  3. You lived with that person in the United States for more than half of the year.
  4. You aren't filing a joint return for the year (or are filing a joint return only to claim a refund of withheld income tax or estimated tax paid).
For more details about the tests to be a qualifying child, see Rule 8.
If you are a qualifying child of another taxpayer, you cannot claim the EIC. This is true even if the person for whom you are a qualifying child doesn't claim the EIC or meet all of the rules to claim the EIC. Put "No" beside line 66a (Form 1040) or line 42a (Form 1040A).
taxmap/pubs/p596-010.htm#en_us_publink1000298544

Example. (p15)

You and your daughter lived with your mother all year. You are 22 years old, unmarried, and attended a trade school full time. You had a part-time job and earned $5,700. You had no other income. Because you meet the relationship, age, residency, and joint return tests, you are a qualifying child of your mother. She can claim the EIC if she meets all the other requirements. Because you are your mother's qualifying child, you cannot claim the EIC. This is so even if your mother cannot or doesn't claim the EIC.
taxmap/pubs/p596-010.htm#en_us_publink1000298545

Child of person not required to file a return. (p15)

rule
You aren't the qualifying child of another taxpayer (and so may qualify to claim the EIC) if the person for whom you met the relationship, age, residency, and joint return tests isn't required to file an income tax return and either:
taxmap/pubs/p596-010.htm#en_us_publink1000298547

Example 1—Return not required. (p15)

The facts are the same as in the last example except your mother had no gross income, isn't required to file a 2016 tax return, and doesn't file a 2016 tax return. As a result, you aren't your mother's qualifying child. You can claim the EIC if you meet all the other requirements to do so.
taxmap/pubs/p596-010.htm#en_us_publink1000298549

Example 2—Return filed to get refund of tax withheld. (p15)

The facts are the same as in Example 1 except your mother had wages of $1,500 and had income tax withheld from her wages. She files a return only to get a refund of the income tax withheld and doesn't claim the EIC or any other tax credits or deductions. As a result, you aren't your mother's qualifying child. You can claim the EIC if you meet all the other requirements to do so.
taxmap/pubs/p596-010.htm#en_us_publink1000298551

Example 3—Return filed to get EIC. (p15)

The facts are the same as in Example 2 except your mother claimed the EIC on her return. Since she filed the return to get the EIC, she isn't filing it only to get a refund of income tax withheld. As a result, you are your mother's qualifying child. You cannot claim the EIC.