Members of the Maryland Association of Certified Public...

Tax questions

March 21, 1998

Members of the Maryland Association of Certified Public Accountants are answering readers' tax questions through April 15.

Q: Can I claim my girlfriend and her child as deductions if no one else is claiming them? They have lived in my household for more than six months.

A: In order to claim either person as a dependent in 1997, all four of the following tests must be met:

The claimed dependent must have less than $2,650 of gross income for the calendar year, unless the dependent is a child of the taxpayer and is either under age 19 or is a full-time student under the age of 24.

More than half of the dependent's support for 1997 must have been provided by you.

The dependent must either be a person who has lived all of 1997 in your home and was a member of your household or was a son or daughter.

The dependent must be a citizen, national or resident of the U.S.

Paul O. Wallace, CPA, C. W. Amos & Co. The above advice is for general purposes only and is not intended as legal, accounting or tax advice. Specific situations may vary.

To ask a tax question, call Sundial, The Sun's telephone information service, at (410) 783-1800. Call 268-7736 in Anne Arundel County, 836-5028 in Harford County, 848-0338 in Carroll County. Using a Touch-Tone phone, punch in the four-digit code 6225 after the greeting. You can also submit questions by e-mail through The Sun's Web site: www.sunspot.net/tax.

Selected questions will be answered in the Business section. No questions will be answered personally.

Pub Date: 3/21/98

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