Legal Question in Family Law in Nevada

My ex wife has primary custody of our daughter. Last year she was deployed and I had my daughter most of the year. Can my ex wife claim her in her tax?

Asked on 1/24/15, 11:29 am

1 Answer from Attorneys

Roger Harada Law Office of Roger R. Harada

This issue can become quite complicated, and the way you structured the question is a bit misleading, so to make a long answer short... yes.

Your question should be, can I claim my daughter on my taxes (for the dependency exemption and other benefits of claiming her)? And the short answer that question is also... yes!

The first thing problematic with your situation is that your question is lacking in detail, in the sense that when your ex-wife deployed you should (or both of you should have) petitioned the court for an order saying that you would have primary custody of your daughter (even if temporary) with an additional provision that you could take her as the exemption.

Given what little you have said, it appears you should be the one taking the exemption, however, if you did not petition the court to recognize you as the primary custodian, then you should ask your ex-wife to provide you with a written declaration that she will not take the exemption this year and you need to attach that declaration to your return when you claim her.

I would direct you to look at Section 3 of IRS Publication 17 for more details on this topic. Lastly, if your ex-wife will not give you the declaration, then you should contact a family law lawyer who is also well versed as to tax implications associated with divorce to discuss your options.

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Answered on 1/24/15, 11:50 am

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