Members of the Maryland Association of Certified Public Accountants are answering readers' tax questions through April 15.
Q: My son was married in November 1994. I supplied full support for him during the year up to the time of his marriage. He has since purchased a condo and moved into it with his new wife. Do I have any way of claiming his support as an exemption during the year he was attending college? I paid for his tuition, and if I can claim at least 11 months of the year, how do we go about splitting the exemption so that he can get one month and I can get the other 11?
A: Sorry, you cannot split the dependency with your son. But, you may still be able to claim the exemption on your return. If your son files a joint return with his wife for 1994 and receives a refund (no tax liability), then you may be able to take the exemption on your return. To find out, you must meet the tests as outlined in the instructions for line 6c of Form 1040 instruction booklet. If your son files jointly and owes tax, you cannot take the exemption, even though you supported him for most of the year.
Q: Is my ground rent still deductible from my federal income tax?
A: Yes, if you make annual or periodic rental payments on a redeemable ground rent, it is considered mortgage interest and is deducted on Schedule A of Form 1040. In Maryland all ground rents are considered redeemable.
The above advice is for general purposes only and is not intended as legal, accounting or tax advice. Specific situations may vary.
A joint service from The Baltimore Sun and the Marylan Association of Certified Public Accountants can help you with your tax queries. Association members, all CPAs, will answer questions from readers until April 15 and also offer a Tax Tip of the Week.
To ask a tax question, call Sundial, The Sun's telephone information service, at (410) 783-1800. In Anne Arundel County call 268-7736, in Harford County 836-5028, and in Carroll County 848-0338. Using a touch-tone phone, enter 6225 after you hear the greeting. Push 1 to ask a tax question; push 2 to hear the tax tip.
Selected questions will be answered in the Business section. No questions will be answered by phone. Please leave your name and phone number.