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  1. #1
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    Sep 2009
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    Default Joint Custody Who Claims Children

    I recently obtained joint custody with my ex in-laws(the grandparents). I have primary custody and I pay child support, they have secondary custody. My kids stay with my ex in-laws thru the week during the school year because my work requires me to travel. I have them every weekend, all holidays, and half the time thru the summer. My question is: Who has the right to claim the children on there taxes? Me or them? Since I'm the parent and pay child support shouldn't I have all rights to claim them? I know the laws can be strange sometimes.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
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    Florida
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    1,908

    Default Re: Joint Custody Who Claims Children

    By default the custodial parent is considered to be the person entitle to claim a child's exemption absent any order in the divorce decree to the contrary. The person with whom the child lives more than half the time is considered to be the custodial parent. Temporary absences from the home such as for vactions, temporary visits to relatives, etc. do not count. The child is still considered a member of the custodial parent's household during such temporary absences.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
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    2

    Default Re: Joint Custody Who Claims Children

    My ex-wife had custody up until this past week. She has only had them about 2 months this year, I've had them 3-4 days out of the week all year. The rest of the time they were with her parents. I'm sure I pay more than half their living expenses. In the divorce papers it was that I claim one and she claims the other one, but they didn't say anything about it in court this time. Our divorce was 8 years ago. My attorney is suppose to have something put in the papers about it. Until I can get another job and take full custody of my kids, I know my ex father-in-law will try to run everything. My ex-wife did credit card fraud on her parents so that's why she agreed on everything in court. My ex in-laws are looking for someone to pay for the debt their daughter created, because they don't want to prosecute her. I had told my ex father-in-law they could claim one of them but I know he wants to claim them both. I'm just trying to get things straightened out before tax season. Another thing is my ex in-laws run a tax business during tax season so he thinks he knows everything but I know some of the stuff they have done wasn't right.

  4. #4
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    Jul 2007
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    Florida
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    1,908

    Default Re: Joint Custody Who Claims Children

    Are you the custodial parent? Do you have any more questions?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    5,977

    Default Re: Joint Custody Who Claims Children

    Quote Quoting gr8dad
    View Post
    I recently obtained joint custody with my ex in-laws(the grandparents). I have primary custody and I pay child support, they have secondary custody. My kids stay with my ex in-laws thru the week during the school year because my work requires me to travel. I have them every weekend, all holidays, and half the time thru the summer. My question is: Who has the right to claim the children on there taxes? Me or them? Since I'm the parent and pay child support shouldn't I have all rights to claim them? I know the laws can be strange sometimes.
    For this year, what you need to do is add up the number of overnights the children have spent with you, or will spend with you. If those add up to more than 1/2 of the year, then absolutely you would be the custodial parent under the tax code.

    You have an odd situation because you are designated the primary parent, yet the children will actually be living with the grandparents more than with you and you are paying the grandparents child support. The IRS does not go by the courts definitions of custodial parent, they go by where the child is actually living. In this instance I don't think you can consider the absence from your home as temporary, since the grandparents have secondary custody. Therefore I do think that the number of overnights the child will spend in each home, is significant.

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