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Amending Tax Returns Online

Amending tax returns online 2. Amending tax returns online   Filing Status Table of Contents What's New Introduction Useful Items - You may want to see: Marital StatusDivorced persons. Amending tax returns online Divorce and remarriage. Amending tax returns online Annulled marriages. Amending tax returns online Head of household or qualifying widow(er) with dependent child. Amending tax returns online Considered married. Amending tax returns online Same-sex marriage. Amending tax returns online Spouse died during the year. Amending tax returns online Married persons living apart. Amending tax returns online Single Married Filing JointlyFiling a Joint Return Married Filing SeparatelySpecial Rules Head of HouseholdConsidered Unmarried Keeping Up a Home Qualifying Person Qualifying Widow(er) With Dependent Child What's New Filing status for same-sex married couples. Amending tax returns online  If you have a same-sex spouse whom you legally married in a state (or foreign country) that recognizes same-sex marriage, you and your spouse generally must use the married filing jointly or married filing separately filing status on your 2013 return, even if you and your spouse now live in a state (or foreign country) that does not recognize same-sex marriage. Amending tax returns online See Same-sex marriage under Marital Status, later. Amending tax returns online Introduction This chapter helps you determine which filing status to use. Amending tax returns online There are five filing statuses. Amending tax returns online Single. Amending tax returns online Married Filing Jointly. Amending tax returns online Married Filing Separately. Amending tax returns online Head of Household. Amending tax returns online Qualifying Widow(er) With Dependent Child. Amending tax returns online If more than one filing status applies to you, choose the one that will give you the lowest tax. Amending tax returns online You must determine your filing status before you can determine whether you must file a tax return (chapter 1), your standard deduction (chapter 20), and your tax (chapter 30). Amending tax returns online You also use your filing status to determine whether you are eligible to claim certain deductions and credits. Amending tax returns online Useful Items - You may want to see: Publication 501 Exemptions, Standard Deduction, and Filing Information 519 U. Amending tax returns online S. Amending tax returns online Tax Guide for Aliens 555 Community Property Marital Status In general, your filing status depends on whether you are considered unmarried or married. Amending tax returns online Unmarried persons. Amending tax returns online   You are considered unmarried for the whole year if, on the last day of your tax year, you are unmarried or legally separated from your spouse under a divorce or separate maintenance decree. Amending tax returns online State law governs whether you are married or legally separated under a divorce or separate maintenance decree. Amending tax returns online Divorced persons. Amending tax returns online   If you are divorced under a final decree by the last day of the year, you are considered unmarried for the whole year. Amending tax returns online Divorce and remarriage. Amending tax returns online   If you obtain a divorce for the sole purpose of filing tax returns as unmarried individuals, and at the time of divorce you intend to and do, in fact, remarry each other in the next tax year, you and your spouse must file as married individuals in both years. Amending tax returns online Annulled marriages. Amending tax returns online    If you obtain a court decree of annulment, which holds that no valid marriage ever existed, you are considered unmarried even if you filed joint returns for earlier years. Amending tax returns online You must file Form 1040X, Amended U. Amending tax returns online S. Amending tax returns online Individual Income Tax Return, claiming single or head of household status for all tax years that are affected by the annulment and are not closed by the statute of limitations for filing a tax return. Amending tax returns online Generally, for a credit or refund, you must file Form 1040X within 3 years (including extensions) after the date you filed your original return or within 2 years after the date you paid the tax, whichever is later. Amending tax returns online If you filed your original return early (for example, March 1), your return is considered filed on the due date (generally April 15). Amending tax returns online However, if you had an extension to file (for example, until October 15) but you filed earlier and we received it on July 1, your return is considered filed on July 1. Amending tax returns online Head of household or qualifying widow(er) with dependent child. Amending tax returns online   If you are considered unmarried, you may be able to file as a head of household or as a qualifying widow(er) with a dependent child. Amending tax returns online See Head of Household and Qualifying Widow(er) With Dependent Child to see if you qualify. Amending tax returns online Married persons. Amending tax returns online   If you are considered married, you and your spouse can file a joint return or separate returns. Amending tax returns online Considered married. Amending tax returns online   You are considered married for the whole year if, on the last day of your tax year, you and your spouse meet any one of the following tests. Amending tax returns online You are married and living together as a married couple. Amending tax returns online You are living together in a common law marriage recognized in the state where you now live or in the state where the common law marriage began. Amending tax returns online You are married and living apart, but not legally separated under a decree of divorce or separate maintenance. Amending tax returns online You are separated under an interlocutory (not final) decree of divorce. Amending tax returns online Same-sex marriage. Amending tax returns online   For federal tax purposes, individuals of the same sex are considered married if they were lawfully married in a state (or foreign country) whose laws authorize the marriage of two individuals of the same sex, even if the state (or foreign country) in which they now live does not recognize same-sex marriage. Amending tax returns online The term “spouse” includes an individual married to a person of the same sex if the couple is lawfully married under state (or foreign) law. Amending tax returns online However, individuals who have entered into a registered domestic partnership, civil union, or other similar relationship that is not considered a marriage under state (or foreign) law are not considered married for federal tax purposes. Amending tax returns online For more details, see Publication 501. Amending tax returns online Spouse died during the year. Amending tax returns online   If your spouse died during the year, you are considered married for the whole year for filing status purposes. Amending tax returns online   If you did not remarry before the end of the tax year, you can file a joint return for yourself and your deceased spouse. Amending tax returns online For the next 2 years, you may be entitled to the special benefits described later under Qualifying Widow(er) With Dependent Child . Amending tax returns online   If you remarried before the end of the tax year, you can file a joint return with your new spouse. Amending tax returns online Your deceased spouse's filing status is married filing separately for that year. Amending tax returns online Married persons living apart. Amending tax returns online   If you live apart from your spouse and meet certain tests, you may be able to file as head of household even if you are not divorced or legally separated. Amending tax returns online If you qualify to file as head of household instead of married filing separately, your standard deduction will be higher. Amending tax returns online Also, your tax may be lower, and you may be able to claim the earned income credit. Amending tax returns online See Head of Household , later. Amending tax returns online Single Your filing status is single if you are considered unmarried and you do not qualify for another filing status. Amending tax returns online To determine your marital status, see Marital Status , earlier. Amending tax returns online Widow(er). Amending tax returns online   Your filing status may be single if you were widowed before January 1, 2013, and did not remarry before the end of 2013. Amending tax returns online You may, however, be able to use another filing status that will give you a lower tax. Amending tax returns online See Head of Household and Qualifying Widow(er) With Dependent Child , later, to see if you qualify. Amending tax returns online How to file. Amending tax returns online   You can file Form 1040. Amending tax returns online If you have taxable income of less than $100,000, you may be able to file Form 1040A. Amending tax returns online If, in addition, you have no dependents, and are under 65 and not blind, and meet other requirements, you can file Form 1040EZ. Amending tax returns online If you file Form 1040A or Form 1040, show your filing status as single by checking the box on line 1. Amending tax returns online Use the Single column of the Tax Table or Section A of the Tax Computation Worksheet to figure your tax. Amending tax returns online Married Filing Jointly You can choose married filing jointly as your filing status if you are considered married and both you and your spouse agree to file a joint return. Amending tax returns online On a joint return, you and your spouse report your combined income and deduct your combined allowable expenses. Amending tax returns online You can file a joint return even if one of you had no income or deductions. Amending tax returns online If you and your spouse decide to file a joint return, your tax may be lower than your combined tax for the other filing statuses. Amending tax returns online Also, your standard deduction (if you do not itemize deductions) may be higher, and you may qualify for tax benefits that do not apply to other filing statuses. Amending tax returns online If you and your spouse each have income, you may want to figure your tax both on a joint return and on separate returns (using the filing status of married filing separately). Amending tax returns online You can choose the method that gives the two of you the lower combined tax. Amending tax returns online How to file. Amending tax returns online   If you file as married filing jointly, you can use Form 1040. Amending tax returns online If you and your spouse have taxable income of less than $100,000, you may be able to file Form 1040A. Amending tax returns online If, in addition, you and your spouse have no dependents, are both under 65 and not blind, and meet other requirements, you can file Form 1040EZ. Amending tax returns online If you file Form 1040 or Form 1040A, show this filing status by checking the box on line 2. Amending tax returns online Use the Married filing jointly column of the Tax Table or Section B of the Tax Computation Worksheet to figure your tax. Amending tax returns online Spouse died. Amending tax returns online   If your spouse died during the year, you are considered married for the whole year and can choose married filing jointly as your filing status. Amending tax returns online See Spouse died during the year under Marital Status, earlier, for more information. Amending tax returns online   If your spouse died in 2014 before filing a 2013 return, you can choose married filing jointly as your filing status on your 2013 return. Amending tax returns online Divorced persons. Amending tax returns online   If you are divorced under a final decree by the last day of the year, you are considered unmarried for the whole year and you cannot choose married filing jointly as your filing status. Amending tax returns online Filing a Joint Return Both you and your spouse must include all of your income, exemptions, and deductions on your joint return. Amending tax returns online Accounting period. Amending tax returns online   Both of you must use the same accounting period, but you can use different accounting methods. Amending tax returns online See Accounting Periods and Accounting Methods in chapter 1. Amending tax returns online Joint responsibility. Amending tax returns online   Both of you may be held responsible, jointly and individually, for the tax and any interest or penalty due on your joint return. Amending tax returns online This means that if one spouse does not pay the tax due, the other may have to. Amending tax returns online Or, if one spouse does not report the correct tax, both spouses may be responsible for any additional taxes assessed by the IRS. Amending tax returns online One spouse may be held responsible for all the tax due even if all the income was earned by the other spouse. Amending tax returns online You may want to file separately if: You believe your spouse is not reporting all of his or her income, or You do not want to be responsible for any taxes due if your spouse does not have enough tax withheld or does not pay enough estimated tax. Amending tax returns online Divorced taxpayer. Amending tax returns online   You may be held jointly and individually responsible for any tax, interest, and penalties due on a joint return filed before your divorce. Amending tax returns online This responsibility may apply even if your divorce decree states that your former spouse will be responsible for any amounts due on previously filed joint returns. Amending tax returns online Relief from joint responsibility. Amending tax returns online   In some cases, one spouse may be relieved of joint responsibility for tax, interest, and penalties on a joint return for items of the other spouse that were incorrectly reported on the joint return. Amending tax returns online You can ask for relief no matter how small the liability. Amending tax returns online   There are three types of relief available. Amending tax returns online Innocent spouse relief. Amending tax returns online Separation of liability (available only to joint filers who are divorced, widowed, legally separated, or have not lived together for the 12 months ending on the date the election for this relief is filed). Amending tax returns online Equitable relief. Amending tax returns online    You must file Form 8857, Request for Innocent Spouse Relief, to request relief from joint responsibility. Amending tax returns online Publication 971, Innocent Spouse Relief, explains these kinds of relief and who may qualify for them. Amending tax returns online Signing a joint return. Amending tax returns online   For a return to be considered a joint return, both spouses generally must sign the return. Amending tax returns online Spouse died before signing. Amending tax returns online   If your spouse died before signing the return, the executor or administrator must sign the return for your spouse. Amending tax returns online If neither you nor anyone else has yet been appointed as executor or administrator, you can sign the return for your spouse and enter “Filing as surviving spouse” in the area where you sign the return. Amending tax returns online Spouse away from home. Amending tax returns online   If your spouse is away from home, you should prepare the return, sign it, and send it to your spouse to sign so that it can be filed on time. Amending tax returns online Injury or disease prevents signing. Amending tax returns online   If your spouse cannot sign because of disease or injury and tells you to sign for him or her, you can sign your spouse's name in the proper space on the return followed by the words “By (your name), Husband (or Wife). Amending tax returns online ” Be sure to also sign in the space provided for your signature. Amending tax returns online Attach a dated statement, signed by you, to the return. Amending tax returns online The statement should include the form number of the return you are filing, the tax year, and the reason your spouse cannot sign, and should state that your spouse has agreed to your signing for him or her. Amending tax returns online Signing as guardian of spouse. Amending tax returns online   If you are the guardian of your spouse who is mentally incompetent, you can sign the return for your spouse as guardian. Amending tax returns online Spouse in combat zone. Amending tax returns online   You can sign a joint return for your spouse if your spouse cannot sign because he or she is serving in a combat zone (such as the Persian Gulf Area, Serbia, Montenegro, Albania, or Afghanistan), even if you do not have a power of attorney or other statement. Amending tax returns online Attach a signed statement to your return explaining that your spouse is serving in a combat zone. Amending tax returns online For more information on special tax rules for persons who are serving in a combat zone, or who are in missing status as a result of serving in a combat zone, see Publication 3, Armed Forces' Tax Guide. Amending tax returns online Other reasons spouse cannot sign. Amending tax returns online    If your spouse cannot sign the joint return for any other reason, you can sign for your spouse only if you are given a valid power of attorney (a legal document giving you permission to act for your spouse). Amending tax returns online Attach the power of attorney (or a copy of it) to your tax return. Amending tax returns online You can use Form 2848, Power of Attorney and Declaration of Representative. Amending tax returns online Nonresident alien or dual-status alien. Amending tax returns online   Generally, a married couple cannot file a joint return if either one is a nonresident alien at any time during the tax year. Amending tax returns online However, if one spouse was a nonresident alien or dual-status alien who was married to a U. Amending tax returns online S. Amending tax returns online citizen or resident alien at the end of the year, the spouses can choose to file a joint return. Amending tax returns online If you do file a joint return, you and your spouse are both treated as U. Amending tax returns online S. Amending tax returns online residents for the entire tax year. Amending tax returns online See chapter 1 of Publication 519. Amending tax returns online Married Filing Separately You can choose married filing separately as your filing status if you are married. Amending tax returns online This filing status may benefit you if you want to be responsible only for your own tax or if it results in less tax than filing a joint return. Amending tax returns online If you and your spouse do not agree to file a joint return, you must use this filing status unless you qualify for head of household status, discussed later. Amending tax returns online You may be able to choose head of household filing status if you are considered unmarried because you live apart from your spouse and meet certain tests (explained later, under Head of Household ). Amending tax returns online This can apply to you even if you are not divorced or legally separated. Amending tax returns online If you qualify to file as head of household, instead of as married filing separately, your tax may be lower, you may be able to claim the earned income credit and certain other credits, and your standard deduction will be higher. Amending tax returns online The head of household filing status allows you to choose the standard deduction even if your spouse chooses to itemize deductions. Amending tax returns online See Head of Household , later, for more information. Amending tax returns online You will generally pay more combined tax on separate returns than you would on a joint return for the reasons listed under Special Rules, later. Amending tax returns online However, unless you are required to file separately, you should figure your tax both ways (on a joint return and on separate returns). Amending tax returns online This way you can make sure you are using the filing status that results in the lowest combined tax. Amending tax returns online When figuring the combined tax of a married couple, you may want to consider state taxes as well as federal taxes. Amending tax returns online How to file. Amending tax returns online   If you file a separate return, you generally report only your own income, exemptions, credits, and deductions. Amending tax returns online You can claim an exemption for your spouse only if your spouse had no gross income, is not filing a return, and was not the dependent of another person. Amending tax returns online You can file Form 1040. Amending tax returns online If your taxable income is less than $100,000, you may be able to file Form 1040A. Amending tax returns online Select this filing status by checking the box on line 3 of either form. Amending tax returns online Enter your spouse's full name and SSN or ITIN in the spaces provided. Amending tax returns online If your spouse does not have and is not required to have an SSN or ITIN, enter “NRA” in the space for your spouse's SSN. Amending tax returns online Use the Married filing separately column of the Tax Table or Section C of the Tax Computation Worksheet to figure your tax. Amending tax returns online Special Rules If you choose married filing separately as your filing status, the following special rules apply. Amending tax returns online Because of these special rules, you usually pay more tax on a separate return than if you use another filing status you qualify for. Amending tax returns online   Your tax rate generally is higher than on a joint return. Amending tax returns online Your exemption amount for figuring the alternative minimum tax is half that allowed on a joint return. Amending tax returns online You cannot take the credit for child and dependent care expenses in most cases, and the amount you can exclude from income under an employer's dependent care assistance program is limited to $2,500 (instead of $5,000). Amending tax returns online If you are legally separated or living apart from your spouse, you may be able to file a separate return and still take the credit. Amending tax returns online For more information about these expenses, the credit, and the exclusion, see chapter 32. Amending tax returns online You cannot take the earned income credit. Amending tax returns online You cannot take the exclusion or credit for adoption expenses in most cases. Amending tax returns online You cannot take the education credits (the American opportunity credit and lifetime learning credit), the deduction for student loan interest, or the tuition and fees deduction. Amending tax returns online You cannot exclude any interest income from qualified U. Amending tax returns online S. Amending tax returns online savings bonds you used for higher education expenses. Amending tax returns online If you lived with your spouse at any time during the tax year: You cannot claim the credit for the elderly or the disabled, and You must include in income a greater percentage (up to 85%) of any social security or equivalent railroad retirement benefits you received. Amending tax returns online The following credits and deductions are reduced at income levels half those for a joint return: The child tax credit, The retirement savings contributions credit, The deduction for personal exemptions, and Itemized deductions. Amending tax returns online Your capital loss deduction limit is $1,500 (instead of $3,000 on a joint return). Amending tax returns online If your spouse itemizes deductions, you cannot claim the standard deduction. Amending tax returns online If you can claim the standard deduction, your basic standard deduction is half the amount allowed on a joint return. Amending tax returns online Adjusted gross income (AGI) limits. Amending tax returns online   If your AGI on a separate return is lower than it would have been on a joint return, you may be able to deduct a larger amount for certain deductions that are limited by AGI, such as medical expenses. Amending tax returns online Individual retirement arrangements (IRAs). Amending tax returns online   You may not be able to deduct all or part of your contributions to a traditional IRA if you or your spouse were covered by an employee retirement plan at work during the year. Amending tax returns online Your deduction is reduced or eliminated if your income is more than a certain amount. Amending tax returns online This amount is much lower for married individuals who file separately and lived together at any time during the year. Amending tax returns online For more information, see How Much Can You Deduct in chapter 17. Amending tax returns online Rental activity losses. Amending tax returns online   If you actively participated in a passive rental real estate activity that produced a loss, you generally can deduct the loss from your nonpassive income, up to $25,000. Amending tax returns online This is called a special allowance. Amending tax returns online However, married persons filing separate returns who lived together at any time during the year cannot claim this special allowance. Amending tax returns online Married persons filing separate returns who lived apart at all times during the year are each allowed a $12,500 maximum special allowance for losses from passive real estate activities. Amending tax returns online See Limits on Rental Losses in chapter 9. Amending tax returns online Community property states. Amending tax returns online   If you live in Arizona, California, Idaho, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Washington, or Wisconsin and file separately, your income may be considered separate income or community income for income tax purposes. Amending tax returns online See Publication 555. Amending tax returns online Joint Return After Separate Returns You can change your filing status from a separate return to a joint return by filing an amended return using Form 1040X. Amending tax returns online You generally can change to a joint return any time within 3 years from the due date of the separate return or returns. Amending tax returns online This does not include any extensions. Amending tax returns online A separate return includes a return filed by you or your spouse claiming married filing separately, single, or head of household filing status. Amending tax returns online Separate Returns After Joint Return Once you file a joint return, you cannot choose to file separate returns for that year after the due date of the return. Amending tax returns online Exception. Amending tax returns online   A personal representative for a decedent can change from a joint return elected by the surviving spouse to a separate return for the decedent. Amending tax returns online The personal representative has 1 year from the due date of the return (including extensions) to make the change. Amending tax returns online See Publication 559, Survivors, Executors, and Administrators, for more information on filing a return for a decedent. Amending tax returns online Head of Household You may be able to file as head of household if you meet all the following requirements. Amending tax returns online You are unmarried or “considered unmarried” on the last day of the year. Amending tax returns online See Marital Status , earlier, and Considered Unmarried , later. Amending tax returns online You paid more than half the cost of keeping up a home for the year. Amending tax returns online A qualifying person lived with you in the home for more than half the year (except for temporary absences, such as school). Amending tax returns online However, if the qualifying person is your dependent parent, he or she does not have to live with you. Amending tax returns online See Special rule for parent , later, under Qualifying Person. Amending tax returns online If you qualify to file as head of household, your tax rate usually will be lower than the rates for single or married filing separately. Amending tax returns online You will also receive a higher standard deduction than if you file as single or married filing separately. Amending tax returns online Kidnapped child. Amending tax returns online   A child may qualify you to file as head of household even if the child has been kidnapped. Amending tax returns online For more information, see Publication 501. Amending tax returns online How to file. Amending tax returns online   If you file as head of household, you can use Form 1040. Amending tax returns online If your taxable income is less than $100,000, you may be able to file Form 1040A. Amending tax returns online Indicate your choice of this filing status by checking the box on line 4 of either form. Amending tax returns online Use the Head of a household column of the Tax Table or Section D of the Tax Computation Worksheet to figure your tax. Amending tax returns online Considered Unmarried To qualify for head of household status, you must be either unmarried or considered unmarried on the last day of the year. Amending tax returns online You are considered unmarried on the last day of the tax year if you meet all the following tests. Amending tax returns online You file a separate return (defined earlier under Joint Return After Separate Returns ). Amending tax returns online You paid more than half the cost of keeping up your home for the tax year. Amending tax returns online Your spouse did not live in your home during the last 6 months of the tax year. Amending tax returns online Your spouse is considered to live in your home even if he or she is temporarily absent due to special circumstances. Amending tax returns online See Temporary absences , under Qualifying Person, later. Amending tax returns online Your home was the main home of your child, stepchild, or foster child for more than half the year. Amending tax returns online (See Home of qualifying person , under Qualifying Person, later, for rules applying to a child's birth, death, or temporary absence during the year. Amending tax returns online ) You must be able to claim an exemption for the child. Amending tax returns online However, you meet this test if you cannot claim the exemption only because the noncustodial parent can claim the child using the rules described in Children of divorced or separated parents (or parents who live apart) under Qualifying Child in chapter 3, or in Support Test for Children of Divorced or Separated Parents (or Parents Who Live Apart) under Qualifying Relative in chapter 3. Amending tax returns online The general rules for claiming an exemption for a dependent are explained under Exemptions for Dependents in chapter 3. Amending tax returns online If you were considered married for part of the year and lived in a community property state (listed earlier under Married Filing Separately), special rules may apply in determining your income and expenses. Amending tax returns online See Publication 555 for more information. Amending tax returns online Nonresident alien spouse. Amending tax returns online   You are considered unmarried for head of household purposes if your spouse was a nonresident alien at any time during the year and you do not choose to treat your nonresident spouse as a resident alien. Amending tax returns online However, your spouse is not a qualifying person for head of household purposes. Amending tax returns online You must have another qualifying person and meet the other tests to be eligible to file as a head of household. Amending tax returns online Choice to treat spouse as resident. Amending tax returns online   You are considered married if you choose to treat your spouse as a resident alien. Amending tax returns online See Publication 519. Amending tax returns online Keeping Up a Home To qualify for head of household status, you must pay more than half of the cost of keeping up a home for the year. Amending tax returns online You can determine whether you paid more than half of the cost of keeping up a home by using Worksheet 2–1. Amending tax returns online Worksheet 2-1. Amending tax returns online Cost of Keeping Up a Home   Amount You Paid Total Cost Property taxes $ $ Mortgage interest expense     Rent     Utility charges     Repairs/maintenance     Property insurance     Food consumed on the premises     Other household expenses     Totals $ $ Minus total amount you paid   () Amount others paid   $ If the total amount you paid is more than the amount others paid, you meet the requirement of paying more than half the cost of keeping up the home. Amending tax returns online Costs you include. Amending tax returns online   Include in the cost of keeping up a home expenses such as rent, mortgage interest, real estate taxes, insurance on the home, repairs, utilities, and food eaten in the home. Amending tax returns online   If you used payments you received under Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) or other public assistance programs to pay part of the cost of keeping up your home, you cannot count them as money you paid. Amending tax returns online However, you must include them in the total cost of keeping up your home to figure if you paid over half the cost. Amending tax returns online Costs you do not include. Amending tax returns online   Do not include the costs of clothing, education, medical treatment, vacations, life insurance, or transportation. Amending tax returns online Also, do not include the rental value of a home you own or the value of your services or those of a member of your household. Amending tax returns online Qualifying Person See Table 2-1 to see who is a qualifying person. Amending tax returns online Any person not described in Table 2-1 is not a qualifying person. Amending tax returns online Table 2-1. Amending tax returns online Who Is a Qualifying Person Qualifying You To File as Head of Household?1 Caution. Amending tax returns online See the text of this chapter for the other requirements you must meet to claim head of household filing status. Amending tax returns online IF the person is your . Amending tax returns online . Amending tax returns online . Amending tax returns online   AND . Amending tax returns online . Amending tax returns online . Amending tax returns online   THEN that person is . Amending tax returns online . Amending tax returns online . Amending tax returns online qualifying child (such as a son, daughter, or grandchild who lived with you more than half the year and meets certain other tests)2   he or she is single   a qualifying person, whether or not you can claim an exemption for the person. Amending tax returns online   he or she is married and you can claim an exemption for him or her   a qualifying person. Amending tax returns online   he or she is married and you cannot claim an exemption for him or her   not a qualifying person. Amending tax returns online 3 qualifying relative4 who is your father or mother   you can claim an exemption for him or her5   a qualifying person. Amending tax returns online 6   you cannot claim an exemption for him or her   not a qualifying person. Amending tax returns online qualifying relative4 other than your father or mother (such as a grandparent, brother, or sister who meets certain tests)   he or she lived with you more than half the year, and he or she is related to you in one of the ways listed under Relatives who do not have to live with you in chapter 3 and you can claim an exemption for him or her5   a qualifying person. Amending tax returns online   he or she did not live with you more than half the year   not a qualifying person. Amending tax returns online   he or she is not related to you in one of the ways listed under Relatives who do not have to live with you in chapter 3 and is your qualifying relative only because he or she lived with you all year as a member of your household   not a qualifying person. Amending tax returns online   you cannot claim an exemption for him or her   not a qualifying person. Amending tax returns online 1A person cannot qualify more than one taxpayer to use the head of household filing status for the year. Amending tax returns online 2The term “qualifying child” is defined in chapter 3. Amending tax returns online Note. Amending tax returns online If you are a noncustodial parent, the term “qualifying child” for head of household filing status does not include a child who is your qualifying child for exemption purposes only because of the rules described under Children of divorced or separated parents (or parents who live apart) under Qualifying Child in chapter 3. Amending tax returns online If you are the custodial parent and those rules apply, the child generally is your qualifying child for head of household filing status even though the child is not a qualifying child for whom you can claim an exemption. Amending tax returns online 3This person is a qualifying person if the only reason you cannot claim the exemption is that you can be claimed as a dependent on someone else's return. Amending tax returns online 4The term “ qualifying relative ” is defined in chapter 3. Amending tax returns online 5If you can claim an exemption for a person only because of a multiple support agreement, that person is not a qualifying person. Amending tax returns online See Multiple Support Agreement in chapter 3. Amending tax returns online 6See Special rule for parent . Amending tax returns online Example 1—child. Amending tax returns online Your unmarried son lived with you all year and was 18 years old at the end of the year. Amending tax returns online He did not provide more than half of his own support and does not meet the tests to be a qualifying child of anyone else. Amending tax returns online As a result, he is your qualifying child (see Qualifying Child in chapter 3) and, because he is single, your qualifying person for you to claim head of household filing status. Amending tax returns online Example 2—child who is not qualifying person. Amending tax returns online The facts are the same as in Example 1 except your son was 25 years old at the end of the year and his gross income was $5,000. Amending tax returns online Because he does not meet the age test (explained under Qualifying Child in chapter 3), your son is not your qualifying child. Amending tax returns online Because he does not meet the gross income test (explained later under Qualifying Relative in chapter 3), he is not your qualifying relative. Amending tax returns online As a result, he is not your qualifying person for head of household purposes. Amending tax returns online Example 3—girlfriend. Amending tax returns online Your girlfriend lived with you all year. Amending tax returns online Even though she may be your qualifying relative if the gross income and support tests (explained in chapter 3) are met, she is not your qualifying person for head of household purposes because she is not related to you in one of the ways listed under Relatives who do not have to live with you in chapter 3. Amending tax returns online See Table 2-1. Amending tax returns online Example 4—girlfriend's child. Amending tax returns online The facts are the same as in Example 3 except your girlfriend's 10-year-old son also lived with you all year. Amending tax returns online He is not your qualifying child and, because he is your girlfriend's qualifying child, he is not your qualifying relative (see Not a Qualifying Child Test in chapter 3). Amending tax returns online As a result, he is not your qualifying person for head of household purposes. Amending tax returns online Home of qualifying person. Amending tax returns online   Generally, the qualifying person must live with you for more than half of the year. Amending tax returns online Special rule for parent. Amending tax returns online   If your qualifying person is your father or mother, you may be eligible to file as head of household even if your father or mother does not live with you. Amending tax returns online However, you must be able to claim an exemption for your father or mother. Amending tax returns online Also, you must pay more than half the cost of keeping up a home that was the main home for the entire year for your father or mother. Amending tax returns online   You are keeping up a main home for your father or mother if you pay more than half the cost of keeping your parent in a rest home or home for the elderly. Amending tax returns online Death or birth. Amending tax returns online   You may be eligible to file as head of household even if the individual who qualifies you for this filing status is born or dies during the year. Amending tax returns online If the individual is your qualifying child, the child must have lived with you for more than half the part of the year he or she was alive. Amending tax returns online If the individual is anyone else, see Publication 501. Amending tax returns online Temporary absences. Amending tax returns online   You and your qualifying person are considered to live together even if one or both of you are temporarily absent from your home due to special circumstances such as illness, education, business, vacation, or military service. Amending tax returns online It must be reasonable to assume the absent person will return to the home after the temporary absence. Amending tax returns online You must continue to keep up the home during the absence. Amending tax returns online Qualifying Widow(er) With Dependent Child If your spouse died in 2013, you can use married filing jointly as your filing status for 2013 if you otherwise qualify to use that status. Amending tax returns online The year of death is the last year for which you can file jointly with your deceased spouse. Amending tax returns online See Married Filing Jointly , earlier. Amending tax returns online You may be eligible to use qualifying widow(er) with dependent child as your filing status for 2 years following the year your spouse died. Amending tax returns online For example, if your spouse died in 2012, and you have not remarried, you may be able to use this filing status for 2013 and 2014. Amending tax returns online This filing status entitles you to use joint return tax rates and the highest standard deduction amount (if you do not itemize deductions). Amending tax returns online It does not entitle you to file a joint return. Amending tax returns online How to file. Amending tax returns online   If you file as qualifying widow(er) with dependent child, you can use Form 1040. Amending tax returns online If you also have taxable income of less than $100,000 and meet certain other conditions, you may be able to file Form 1040A. Amending tax returns online Check the box on line 5 of either form. Amending tax returns online Use the Married filing jointly column of the Tax Table or Section B of the Tax Computation Worksheet to figure your tax. Amending tax returns online Eligibility rules. Amending tax returns online   You are eligible to file your 2013 return as a qualifying widow(er) with dependent child if you meet all of the following tests. Amending tax returns online You were entitled to file a joint return with your spouse for the year your spouse died. Amending tax returns online It does not matter whether you actually filed a joint return. Amending tax returns online Your spouse died in 2011 or 2012 and you did not remarry before the end of 2013. Amending tax returns online You have a child or stepchild for whom you can claim an exemption. Amending tax returns online This does not include a foster child. Amending tax returns online This child lived in your home all year, except for temporary absences. Amending tax returns online See Temporary absences , earlier, under Head of Household. Amending tax returns online There are also exceptions, described later, for a child who was born or died during the year and for a kidnapped child. Amending tax returns online You paid more than half the cost of keeping up a home for the year. Amending tax returns online See Keeping Up a Home , earlier, under Head of Household. Amending tax returns online Example. Amending tax returns online John's wife died in 2011. Amending tax returns online John has not remarried. Amending tax returns online During 2012 and 2013, he continued to keep up a home for himself and his child, who lives with him and for whom he can claim an exemption. Amending tax returns online For 2011 he was entitled to file a joint return for himself and his deceased wife. Amending tax returns online For 2012 and 2013, he can file as qualifying widower with a dependent child. Amending tax returns online After 2013 he can file as head of household if he qualifies. Amending tax returns online Death or birth. Amending tax returns online    You may be eligible to file as a qualifying widow(er) with dependent child if the child who qualifies you for this filing status is born or dies during the year. Amending tax returns online You must have provided more than half of the cost of keeping up a home that was the child's main home during the entire part of the year he or she was alive. Amending tax returns online Kidnapped child. Amending tax returns online   A child may qualify you for qualifying widow(er) with dependent child, even if the child has been kidnapped. Amending tax returns online See Publication 501. Amending tax returns online    As mentioned earlier, this filing status is available for only 2 years following the year your spouse died. Amending tax returns online Prev  Up  Next   Home   More Online Publications
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About the API

We make the content you see in our directory of federal agencies available in both English and Spanish via a REST API. The API programmatically returns all of the information contained in the directory, or you can query the API to return just a subset of the available information.

If you are using the Federal Agency Directory API and have feedback or want to tell us about your product, please e-mail us.

Changes to the API

On December 28, 2012, we launched version 2.0 of the API and made the following changes:

  • Launched new methods to return directory records in a hierarchical fashion.
  • Results can now be returned using XML and JSONP, as well as straight JSON.
  • The Interface method was removed.

About the Data

The data in the Federal Agency Directory API is based on the English and Spanish federal agency directories. We gather this data from the agency information listed in the U.S. Government Manual, and independent research by our staff.

There is no schedule for data updates; we update data continually, and as needed. Early versions of the API may have incomplete and inconsistent data. We are working to continually develop the data in our directory records.

If you have suggestions about what types of data you would like to see in the Federal Agency Directory API, please e-mail us.

About the Spanish Data

GobiernoUSA.gov and the North American Academy of the Spanish Language (ANLE, per its Spanish acronym) worked together to review federal agencies Spanish translations to ensure language accuracy and consistency throughout the government. ANLE, the highest authority on Spanish language in the United States, and GobiernoUSA.gov have the joined mission of improving and standardizing the use of Spanish language in government communications.

This collaboration, possible through a signed agreement between the two institutions, resulted in a list of official Spanish language translations of federal agencies, available through this API.

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Accessing the API

Our Federal Agency Directory API is accessible via HTTP GET requests and does not require a login or API key to use.

The base URL for the API is http://www.usa.gov/api/USAGovAPI/contacts.{format}/. Append the API call you’d like to make to this URL.

Currently, three output formats are available:

  1. JSON (such as http://www.usa.gov/api/USAGovAPI/contacts.json/contacts)
  2. XML (such as http://www.usa.gov/api/USAGovAPI/contacts.xml/contacts)
  3. JSONP (such as http://www.usa.gov/api/USAGovAPI/contacts.jsonp/contacts?callback=callmemaybe). When requesting JSONP, you should include a callback parameter with the name of the callback function you would like called.

For the purposes of this documentation, only JSON sample calls and results will be shown.

API Result Formats

The Federal Agency Directory API returns results in json, with an optional callback parameter to enable jsonp support.

Interactive Documentation for the API

If you're interested in trying out the Federal Agency Directory API, we have an interactive test page. On this page, you can try different parameters and see the results.

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API Data Model

The following fields are associated with directory records. Please note that not every record has data in every field, and the API will only return completed fields.

  • Id - A unique identifier for each directory record
  • Name – The name of the agency.
  • Description – A brief description of the agency.
  • Language – Whether the record is in English or Spanish.
  • Subdivision – Used for mailing items to the agency.
  • Street1 – A first line of address information (such as the street address) for the agency’s main office.
  • Street2 – A second line of address information for the agency’s main office.
  • City – The city of the agency’s main office.
  • StateTer – The state of the agency’s main office.
  • Zip – The postal zip code of the agency’s main office.
  • Email – The e-mail address for the agency’s main office.
  • Phone – The phone number of the agency’s main office (may contain more than one).
  • TTY – The TTY number of the agency’s main office (may contain more than one).
  • Tollfree – The toll-free number to contact the agency (may contain more than one).
  • SMS – Any services offered via text messaging by the agency.
  • Synonym – Alternative names used commonly to refer to the agency (may contain more than one).
  • URI – The URL to access the agency’s complete directory record via the API.
  • Source_Url – The USA.gov or GobiernoUSA.gov URL that contains the record.

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URLs

The directory API returns several types of URLs that can be used to link to the agency.

  • Web_Url – Main URLs for the agency (may contain more than one).
  • Contact_Url – URLs for the public to contact the agency (may contain more than one).
  • In_Person_Url – URLs for the public to find out how to interact with the agney in person (may contain more than one).
  • Form_Url – URLs for the agency to find forms from the agency (may contain more than one).

For each of these URLs, the following sub-data elements are returned:

  • Url – The URL to the web page.
  • Description – A description of the URL.
  • Language – Whether the web page located at the URL is in English (en) or Spanish (es).

Agency Relationships

Additionally, the directory API returns information on the hierarchical relationship between federal agencies.

  • Parent – The parent of the agency. such as the Department of the Treasury for the Internal Revenue Service.
  • Child – Any children departments or agencies for the agency. such as the Census Bureau for the Department of Commerce (may contain more than one of these).
  • Alt_Language – The record for the agency in Spanish, if the record is in English, and vice versa.

For each of these relationships, the following sub-data elements are returned for the related agency:

  • Id – A unique identifier for each directory record
  • Name – The name of the agency.
  • URI – The URL to access the agency’s complete directory record via the API.
  • For Alt_Language only, Language – Whether the alternate language record is in English (en) or Spanish (es).

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API Methods

As of version 2.0, the methods of the Federal Agency Directory API are broken down into two categories. The first category simply returns a list of agency records. The second category returns a hierarchical structure of the agency records, making it easy to form a tree. The tree can show that the Food and Drug Administration is part of the Department of Health and Human Services. This is just one example.

API Methods That Return A List of Agency Records

Contacts

Contacts is a general purpose call that, by default, will return all of the agency directory records. However, you can pass parameters into contacts that allow you to filter the records returned by the API in powerful ways.

Parameters

query_filter – Return only agency directory records that meet the criteria you enter into this parameter. In general, the filter takes the form of {field_name}::{value}[|{field_name}::{value}]*. Additionally, for names, you can perform substring searches by surrounding {value} with asterixis.

For example, if you want to return all agencies that have the word “commission” in their title, you can use a query_filter of name::*commission*. Likewise, if you want to find all commissions who have their main address in Virginia, you can use a query_filter of: name::*commission*|state::VA

See the data model above for a list of field names that you can query on.

result_filter – Return only the fields listed here (separated by |) as opposed to every field in each directory record. For example, use a result_filter of name|phone to return only names and phone numbers.

See the data model above for a list of field names that you can specify be returned.

sort – Allows you to specify the sort order of the returned agency directory records. For example, use a sort of name to sort the results by the agency’s name. You can also cause the sort to go in descending order by prepending the field name with a -, such as -name.

See the data model above for a list of field names that you can sort the results on.

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/contacts/tree/independent

The independent method will return every agency record that has no parent and no child, such as the National Railroad Passenger Corporation.

/contacts/tree

The tree method returns every agency record, and, optionally, includes sub-agencies as part of their parent agency’s record.

Paramaters

include_descendants - Set to true if you want the API to return the descendents directly as part of their parent agency’s record.

/contacts/tree/dependent

The dependent method returns every agency record that has sub-agencies, and, optionally, includes sub-agencies as part of their parent agency’s record.

Parameters

include_descendants - Set to true if you want the API to return the descendents directly as part of their parent agency’s record.

/contact/{identifier}/tree/sibling

The sibling method will return all of the agency records that are siblings to the agency represented by the id specified in the REST URL. It will also return the record for the id specified as well.  

The only difference between the result format of the sibling method and the more generic contacts method is that the siblings method does not return the child and parent data elements as part of it’s results.

For example, if you request the sibling agencies for the U.S. Botanic Garden (id 49108), the API will return records for both the U.S. Botanic Garden and the U.S. Capitol Visitor Center, as both of these agencies are part of the Architect of the Capitol.

If you desired the results in JSON format, the API call for this query would look like the following:
http://www.usa.gov/api/USAGovAPI/contacts.json/contact/49108/tree/sibling

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Sample Results For These Methods

For API methods that return a list of directory records, the API will return an array of objects, such as:

The API will return an array of objects, such as:

{
   "Contact":[
      {
         "Id":"52663",
         "URI":"http://www.usa.gov/api/USAGovAPI/contacts.json/contact/52663",
         "Language":"en",
         "Name":"U.S. Access Board",
         "Source_Url":"http://www.usa.gov/directory/federal/us-access-board.shtml",
         "Street1":"1331 F Street, NW",
         "Street2":"Suite 1000",
         "City":"Washington",
         "StateTer":"DC",
         "Zip":"20004-1111",
         "Synonym":[
            "Access Board"
         ],
         "Phone":[
            "202-272-0080"
         ],
         "Tollfree":[
            "800-872-2253"
         ],
         "TTY":[
            "202-272-0082",
            "800-993-2822"
         ],
         "Email":"info@access-board.gov",
         "Contact_Url":[
            {
               "Url":"http://www.access-board.gov/contact.htm",
               "Description":"Contact the U.S. Access Board ",
               "Language":"en"
            },
            {
               "Url":"http://www.access-board.gov/contact.htm#email",
               "Description":"E-mail Directory",
               "Language":"en"
            },
            {
               "Url":"http://www.access-board.gov/contact.htm#Phone",
               "Description":"Phone Directory",
               "Language":"en"
            },
            {
               "Url":"http://www.access-board.gov/enforcement/filing.htm",
               "Description":"File an Accessibility Complaint",
               "Language":"en"
            }
         ],
         "Web_Url":[
            {
               "Url":"http://www.access-board.gov/",
               "Description":"U.S. Access Board ",
               "Language":"en"
            }
         ],
         "In_Person_Url":[
            {
               "Url":"http://www.access-board.gov/contact.htm#Location",
               "Description":"Map and Directions",
               "Language":"en"
            }
         ],
         "Description":"The Access Board is an independent federal agency devoted to accessibility for people with disabilities. The Board develops and maintains design criteria for the built environment, transit vehicles, telecommunications equipment, and for electronic and information technology. ",
         "Alt_Language":[
            {
               "Id":"50175",
               "URI":"http://www.usa.gov/api/USAGovAPI/contacts.json/contact/50175",
               "Name":"Consejo de Acceso de Estados Unidos",
               "Language":"es"
            }
         ]
      },
      {
         "Id":"61787",
         "URI":"http://www.usa.gov/api/USAGovAPI/contacts.json/contact/61787",
         "Language":"en",
         "Name":"Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission",
         "Source_Url":"http://www.usa.gov/directory/federal/medicaid-chip-payment-access-commission.shtml",
         "Street1":"1800 M Street, NW",
         "Street2":"Suite 350N",
         "City":"Washington",
         "StateTer":"DC",
         "Zip":"20036",
         "Phone":[
            "202-273-2460"
         ],
         "Email":"webmaster@macpac.gov",
         "Web_Url":[
            {
               "Url":"http://www.macpac.gov",
               "Description":"Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission ",
               "Language":"en"
            }
         ]
      }
   ]
}

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If you set include_descendents to true in the tree or descendants methods, parent agencies will include an array called "Contact" with their child agency records, such as in this snippet:

{
   "Contact":[
      {
         "Id":"49015",
         "URI":"http://www.usa.gov/api/USAGovAPI/contacts.json/contact/49015",
         "Language":"en",
         "Name":"U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)",
         "Source_Url":"http://www.usa.gov/directory/federal/department-of-agriculture.shtml",
         "Street1":"1400 Independence Ave., S.W.",
         "City":"Washington",
         "StateTer":"DC",
         "Zip":"20250",
         "Synonym":[
            "Agriculture Department",
            "Department of Agriculture"
         ],
         "Phone":[
            "202-720-2791"
         ],
         "Contact_Url":[
            {
               "Url":"http://usda.gov/wps/portal/usda/usdahome?navid=CONTACT_US",
               "Description":"Contact the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) ",
               "Language":"en"
            },
            {
               "Url":"http://www.fns.usda.gov/cnd/Contacts/StateDirectory.htm",
               "Description":"Child Nutrition Programs",
               "Language":"en"
            },
            {
               "Url":"http://www.fns.usda.gov/snap/contact_info/default.htm",
               "Description":"Food Stamps",
               "Language":"en"
            },
            {
               "Url":"http://www.fsis.usda.gov/Food_Safety_Education/USDA_Meat_&_Poultry_Hotline/index.asp",
               "Description":"Meat and Poultry Hotline",
               "Language":"en"
            },
            {
               "Url":"http://offices.sc.egov.usda.gov/employeeDirectory/app",
               "Description":"Employee Directory",
               "Language":"en"
            }
         ],
         "Web_Url":[
            {
               "Url":"http://www.usda.gov/wps/portal/usda/usdahome",
               "Description":"U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) ",
               "Language":"en"
            }
         ],
         "In_Person_Url":[
            {
               "Url":"http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/recd_map.html",
               "Description":"Rural Development Office Locator",
               "Language":"en"
            },
            {
               "Url":"http://apps.ams.usda.gov/FarmersMarkets/",
               "Description":"Farmers Markets Near You",
               "Language":"en"
            },
            {
               "Url":"http://offices.sc.egov.usda.gov/locator/app",
               "Description":"Find a Service Center Near You",
               "Language":"en"
            }
         ],
         "Description":"The Department of Agriculture provides leadership on food, agriculture, natural resources, and related issues.",
         "Alt_Language":[
            {
               "Id":"50072",
               "URI":"http://www.usa.gov/api/USAGovAPI/contacts.json/contact/50072",
               "Name":"Departamento de Agricultura",
               "Language":"es"
            }
         ],
         "Contact":[
            {
               "Id":"48012",
               "URI":"http://www.usa.gov/api/USAGovAPI/contacts.json/contact/48012",
               "Language":"en",
               "Name":"Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion (CNPP)",
               "Source_Url":"http://www.usa.gov/directory/federal/center-for-nutrition-policy-and-promotion.shtml",
               "Street1":"3101 Park Center Dr., 10th Floor",
               "City":"Alexandria",
               "StateTer":"VA",
               "Zip":"22302-1594",
               "Phone":[
                  "703-305-7600"
               ],
               "Contact_Url":[
                  {
                     "Url":"http://www.cnpp.usda.gov/contacts.htm",
                     "Description":"Contact the Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion (CNPP) ",
                     "Language":"en"
                  }
               ],
               "Web_Url":[
                  {
                     "Url":"http://www.cnpp.usda.gov/",
                     "Description":"Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion (CNPP) ",
                     "Language":"en"
                  },
                  {
                     "Url":"http://www.choosemyplate.gov/",
                     "Description":"",
                     "Language":"en"
                  }
               ],
               "Description":"The USDA Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion (CNPP) works to improve the health and well-being of Americans by developing and promoting dietary guidance that links scientific research to the nutrition needs of consumers."
            }
         ]
      }
   ]
}

For a complete list of fields returned in the json, see the data model description above. Please note that any field that contains more than one item in it (such as synonyms), is returned as an array and noted in the data model description.

We encourage you to try out the interactive documentation to learn more.

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API Methods That Return Agency Records in a Tree Form

These methods return agency records in a hierarchical data structure. In this way, you do not have to manually recreate the hierarchy yourself using the contacts method.

/contact/{identifier}/tree/parent

The parent method returns the record of the parent agency specified in the REST URL and will continue up the agency hierarchy until the root agency is returned. Additionally, the record for the id specified will also be returned.

For example, if you request the parent tree for the Administration for Native Americans (agency id 49064) , the API will return a tree structure whose head is the U.S.  Department of Health and Human Services, with a child record for the Administration for Children and Families, which will then have a child record for the Administration of Native Americans.

With JSON-formatted results, this call would be made with this URL:  http://www.usa.gov/api/USAGovAPI/contacts.json/contact/49064/tree/parent

Likewise, if you request the parent tree for the Administration for Children and Families (agency id 47994), the API will return a tree structure whose head is the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, with a child record for the Administration for Children and Families.  However, the structure will end at that point instead of continuing down the agency hierarchy.

With JSON-formatted results, this call would be made with this URL:  http://www.usa.gov/api/USAGovAPI/contacts.json/contact/47994/tree/parent

/contact/{identifier}/tree/descendant

The descendant method will return a tree with the agency specified in the REST URL at it’s head. It will include all of the agency's sub-agencies as children. The tree will then continue in this fashion until the agencies with no children are returned.

For example, if you request the descendant tree of the Administration for Children and Families (agency id 47994), the API will return a tree structure with the record for the Administration for Children and Families at it’s head. There would then be child record for the Administration of Native Americans, since that agency is a subagency of the Administration for Children and Families.

With JSON-formatted results, this call would be made with this URL: http://www.usa.gov/api/USAGovAPI/contacts.json/contact/47994/tree/descendant

Likewise, if you request the descendant tree of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (agency id 49021), the API will return a tree structure with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services record at it’s head, and have 15 child records for each of the sub-agencies.  The tree will continue in this manner until the entire U.S. Department of Health and Human Services hierarchy of agencies is exposed.

With JSON-formatted results, this call would be made with this URL: http://www.usa.gov/api/USAGovAPI/contacts.json/contact/49021/tree/descendant

/contact/{identifier}/tree/branch

The branch method returns a tree that is the combination of the trees returned by the parent method and the descendant method for the id specified in the REST URL. With this one method, the API will return every parent and every descendant of a particular agency.

/contact/{identifier}

The contact/{identifier} method will return the single directory record represented by the id specified in the REST URL. There are no children records returned when using this method.

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Sample Results For These Methods

For API methods that return a tree of directory records, the API will return an array of objects, such as:

{
  "Id": "49021",
  "URI": "http://www.usa.gov/api/USAGovAPI/contacts.json/contact/49021",
  "Language": "en",
  "Name": "U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)",
  "Source_Url": "http://www.usa.gov/directory/federal/department-of-health-and-human-services.shtml",
  "Street1": "200 Independence Avenue, S.W.",
  "City": "Washington",
  "StateTer": "DC",
  "Zip": "20201",
  "Synonym": [
    "Health and Human Services Department",
    "Department of Health and Human Services"
  ],
  "Contact_Url": [
    {
      "Url": "http://www.hhs.gov/contactus.html",
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      "Language": "en"
    },
    {
      "Url": "http://www.acf.hhs.gov/acf_contact_us.html#state",
      "Description": "Child Support",
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    {
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      "Description": "Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (Welfare)",
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    {
      "Url": "http://www.medicare.gov/ContactUs.asp",
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    {
      "Url": "http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/ocs/liheap/about/contact_us.html",
      "Description": "Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)",
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    {
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  "Web_Url": [
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  "In_Person_Url": [
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      "Street1": "370 L'nfant Promenade, SW",
      "City": "Washington",
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      "Zip": "20447",
      "Tollfree": [
        "1-888-289-8442 (Fraud Alert Hotline)"
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        {
          "Url": "http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/ana/about",
          "Description": "Contact the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) ",
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        {
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          "Description": "Employee Directory",
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          "Url": "http://www.acf.hhs.gov/acf_contact_us.html#state",
          "Description": "Child Support",
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          "Description": "Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (Welfare)",
          "Language": "en"
        },
        {
          "Url": "http://www.childwelfare.gov/pubs/reslist/rl_dsp.cfm?rs_id=5&rate_chno=11-11172",
          "Description": "Report Child Abuse and Neglect",
          "Language": "en"
        },
        {
          "Url": "http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/ocs/liheap/about/contact_us.html",
          "Description": "Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)",
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          "Source_Url": "http://www.usa.gov/directory/federal/administration-for-native-americans.shtml",
          "Street1": "2nd Floor, West Aerospace Center",
          "Street2": "370 L'Enfant Promenade, SW",
          "City": "Washington",
          "StateTer": "DC",
          "Zip": "20447-0002",
          "Tollfree": [
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          "Email": "anacomments@acf.hhs.gov",
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              "Description": "Contact the Administration for Native Americans ",
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          "Web_Url": [
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              "Description": "Administration for Native Americans ",
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          "Description": "The Administration for Native Americans promotes self-sufficiency and cultural preservation for Native Americans by providing social and economic development opportunities through financial assistance, training, and technical assistance.",
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            }
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        }
      ]
    }
  ]
}

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The Amending Tax Returns Online

Amending tax returns online 32. Amending tax returns online   Child and Dependent Care Credit Table of Contents Reminders Introduction Useful Items - You may want to see: Tests To Claim the CreditQualifying Person Test Earned Income Test Work-Related Expense Test Joint Return Test Provider Identification Test How To Figure the CreditFiguring Total Work-Related Expenses Earned Income Limit Dollar Limit Amount of Credit How To Claim the CreditTax credit not refundable. Amending tax returns online Employment Taxes for Household Employers Reminders Taxpayer identification number needed for each qualifying person. Amending tax returns online  You must include on line 2 of Form 2441 the name and taxpayer identification number (generally the social security number) of each qualifying person. Amending tax returns online See Taxpayer identification number under Qualifying Person Test, later. Amending tax returns online You may have to pay employment taxes. Amending tax returns online  If you pay someone to come to your home and care for your dependent or spouse, you may be a household employer who has to pay employment taxes. Amending tax returns online Usually, you are not a household employer if the person who cares for your dependent or spouse does so at his or her home or place of business. Amending tax returns online See Employment Taxes for Household Employers , later. Amending tax returns online Introduction This chapter discusses the credit for child and dependent care expenses and covers the following topics. Amending tax returns online Tests you must meet to claim the credit. Amending tax returns online How to figure the credit. Amending tax returns online How to claim the credit. Amending tax returns online Employment taxes you may have to pay as a household employer. Amending tax returns online You may be able to claim the credit if you pay someone to care for your dependent who is under age 13 or for your spouse or dependent who is not able to care for himself or herself. Amending tax returns online The credit can be up to 35% of your expenses. Amending tax returns online To qualify, you must pay these expenses so you can work or look for work. Amending tax returns online This credit should not be confused with the child tax credit discussed in chapter 34. Amending tax returns online Dependent care benefits. Amending tax returns online   If you received any dependent care benefits from your employer during the year, you may be able to exclude from your income all or part of them. Amending tax returns online You must complete Form 2441, Part III, before you can figure the amount of your credit. Amending tax returns online See Dependent Care Benefits under How To Figure the Credit, later. Amending tax returns online Useful Items - You may want to see: Publication 501 Exemptions, Standard Deduction, and Filing Information 503 Child and Dependent Care Expenses 926 Household Employer's Tax Guide Form (and Instructions) 2441 Child and Dependent Care Expenses Schedule H (Form 1040) Household Employment Taxes W-7 Application for IRS Individual Taxpayer Identification Number W-10 Dependent Care Provider's Identification and Certification Tests To Claim the Credit To be able to claim the credit for child and dependent care expenses, you must file Form 1040 or Form 1040A, not Form 1040EZ, and meet all the following tests. Amending tax returns online The care must be for one or more qualifying persons who are identified on Form 2441. Amending tax returns online (See Qualifying Person Test . Amending tax returns online ) You (and your spouse if filing jointly) must have earned income during the year. Amending tax returns online (However, see Rule for student-spouse or spouse not able to care for self under Earned Income Test, later. Amending tax returns online ) You must pay child and dependent care expenses so you (and your spouse if filing jointly) can work or look for work. Amending tax returns online (See Work-Related Expense Test , later. Amending tax returns online ) You must make payments for child and dependent care to someone you (and your spouse) cannot claim as a dependent. Amending tax returns online If you make payments to your child, he or she cannot be your dependent and must be age 19 or older by the end of the year. Amending tax returns online You cannot make payments to: Your spouse, or The parent of your qualifying person if your qualifying person is your child and under age 13. Amending tax returns online (See Payments to Relatives or Dependents under Work-Related Expense Test, later. Amending tax returns online ) Your filing status may be single, head of household, or qualifying widow(er) with dependent child. Amending tax returns online If you are married, you must file a joint return, unless an exception applies to you. Amending tax returns online (See Joint Return Test , later. Amending tax returns online ) You must identify the care provider on your tax return. Amending tax returns online (See Provider Identification Test , later. Amending tax returns online ) If you exclude or deduct dependent care benefits provided by a dependent care benefits plan, the total amount you exclude or deduct must be less than the dollar limit for qualifying expenses (generally, $3,000 if one qualifying person was cared for or $6,000 if two or more qualifying persons were cared for). Amending tax returns online (If two or more qualifying persons were cared for, the amount you exclude or deduct will always be less than the dollar limit, since the total amount you can exclude or deduct is limited to $5,000. Amending tax returns online See Reduced Dollar Limit under How To Figure the Credit, later. Amending tax returns online ) These tests are presented in Figure 32-A and are also explained in detail in this chapter. Amending tax returns online Figure 32-A. Amending tax returns online Can You Claim the Credit? Please click here for the text description of the image. Amending tax returns online Figure 32-A Can You Claim the Credit? Qualifying Person Test Your child and dependent care expenses must be for the care of one or more qualifying persons. Amending tax returns online A qualifying person is: Your qualifying child who is your dependent and who was under age 13 when the care was provided (but see Child of divorced or separated parents or parents living apart, later), Your spouse who was not physically or mentally able to care for himself or herself and lived with you for more than half the year, or A person who was not physically or mentally able to care for himself or herself, lived with you for more than half the year, and either: Was your dependent, or Would have been your dependent except that: He or she received gross income of $3,900 or more, He or she filed a joint return, or You, or your spouse if filing jointly, could be claimed as a dependent on someone else's 2013 return. Amending tax returns online Dependent defined. Amending tax returns online   A dependent is a person, other than you or your spouse, for whom you can claim an exemption. Amending tax returns online To be your dependent, a person must be your qualifying child (or your qualifying relative). Amending tax returns online Qualifying child. Amending tax returns online   To be your qualifying child, a child must live with you for more than half the year and meet other requirements. Amending tax returns online More information. Amending tax returns online   For more information about who is a dependent or a qualifying child, see chapter 3. Amending tax returns online Physically or mentally not able to care for oneself. Amending tax returns online   Persons who cannot dress, clean, or feed themselves because of physical or mental problems are considered not able to care for themselves. Amending tax returns online Also, persons who must have constant attention to prevent them from injuring themselves or others are considered not able to care for themselves. Amending tax returns online Person qualifying for part of year. Amending tax returns online   You determine a person's qualifying status each day. Amending tax returns online For example, if the person for whom you pay child and dependent care expenses no longer qualifies on September 16, count only those expenses through September 15. Amending tax returns online Also see Yearly limit under Dollar Limit, later. Amending tax returns online Birth or death of otherwise qualifying person. Amending tax returns online   In determining whether a person is a qualifying person, a person who was born or died in 2013 is treated as having lived with you for more than half of 2013 if your home was the person's home for more than half the time he or she was alive in 2013. Amending tax returns online Taxpayer identification number. Amending tax returns online   You must include on your return the name and taxpayer identification number (generally the social security number) of the qualifying person(s). Amending tax returns online If the correct information is not shown, the credit may be reduced or disallowed. Amending tax returns online Individual taxpayer identification number (ITIN) for aliens. Amending tax returns online   If your qualifying person is a nonresident or resident alien who does not have and cannot get a social security number (SSN), use that person's ITIN. Amending tax returns online The ITIN is entered wherever an SSN is requested on a tax return. Amending tax returns online To apply for an ITIN, see Form W-7. Amending tax returns online   An ITIN is for tax use only. Amending tax returns online It does not entitle the holder to social security benefits or change the holder's employment or immigration status under U. Amending tax returns online S. Amending tax returns online law. Amending tax returns online Adoption taxpayer identification number (ATIN). Amending tax returns online   If your qualifying person is a child who was placed in your home for adoption and for whom you do not have an SSN, you must get an ATIN for the child. Amending tax returns online File Form W-7A, Application for Taxpayer Identification Number for Pending U. Amending tax returns online S. Amending tax returns online Adoptions. Amending tax returns online Child of divorced or separated parents or parents living apart. Amending tax returns online   Even if you cannot claim your child as a dependent, he or she is treated as your qualifying person if: The child was under age 13 or was not physically or mentally able to care for himself or herself, The child received over half of his or her support during the calendar year from one or both parents who are divorced or legally separated under a decree of divorce or separate maintenance, are separated under a written separation agreement, or lived apart at all times during the last 6 months of the calendar year, The child was in the custody of one or both parents for more than half the year, and You were the child's custodial parent. Amending tax returns online   The custodial parent is the parent with whom the child lived for the greater number of nights in 2013. Amending tax returns online If the child was with each parent for an equal number of nights, the custodial parent is the parent with the higher adjusted gross income. Amending tax returns online For details and an exception for a parent who works at night, see Pub. Amending tax returns online 501. Amending tax returns online   The noncustodial parent cannot treat the child as a qualifying person even if that parent is entitled to claim the child as a dependent under the special rules for a child of divorced or separated parents. Amending tax returns online Earned Income Test To claim the credit, you (and your spouse if filing jointly) must have earned income during the year. Amending tax returns online Earned income. Amending tax returns online   Earned income includes wages, salaries, tips, other taxable employee compensation, and net earnings from self-employment. Amending tax returns online A net loss from self-employment reduces earned income. Amending tax returns online Earned income also includes strike benefits and any disability pay you report as wages. Amending tax returns online   Generally, only taxable compensation is included. Amending tax returns online However, you can elect to include nontaxable combat pay in earned income. Amending tax returns online If you are filing a joint return and both you and your spouse received nontaxable combat pay, you can each make your own election. Amending tax returns online (In other words, if one of you makes the election, the other one can also make it but does not have to. Amending tax returns online ) You should figure your credit both ways and make the election if it gives you a greater tax benefit. Amending tax returns online Members of certain religious faiths opposed to social security. Amending tax returns online   Certain income earned by persons who are members of certain religious faiths that are opposed to participation in Social Security Act programs and have an IRS-approved form that exempts certain income from social security and Medicare taxes may not be considered earned income for this purpose. Amending tax returns online See Earned Income Test in Publication 503. Amending tax returns online Not earned income. Amending tax returns online   Earned income does not include: Pensions and annuities, Social security and railroad retirement benefits, Workers' compensation, Interest and dividends, Unemployment compensation, Scholarship or fellowship grants, except for those reported on a Form W-2 and paid to you for teaching or other services, Nontaxable workfare payments, Child support payments received by you, Income of nonresident aliens that is not effectively connected with a U. Amending tax returns online S. Amending tax returns online trade or business, or Any amount received for work while an inmate in a penal institution. Amending tax returns online Rule for student-spouse or spouse not able to care for self. Amending tax returns online   Your spouse is treated as having earned income for any month that he or she is: A full-time student, or Physically or mentally not able to care for himself or herself. Amending tax returns online (Your spouse also must live with you for more than half the year. Amending tax returns online )   If you are filing a joint return, this rule also applies to you. Amending tax returns online You can be treated as having earned income for any month you are a full-time student or not able to care for yourself. Amending tax returns online   Figure the earned income of the nonworking spouse described under (1) or (2) above as explained under Earned Income Limit , later. Amending tax returns online   This rule applies to only one spouse for any one month. Amending tax returns online If, in the same month, both you and your spouse do not work and are either full-time students or not physically or mentally able to care for yourselves, only one of you can be treated as having earned income in that month. Amending tax returns online Full-time student. Amending tax returns online   You are a full-time student if you are enrolled at a school for the number of hours or classes that the school considers full time. Amending tax returns online You must have been a full-time student for some part of each of 5 calendar months during the year. Amending tax returns online (The months need not be consecutive. Amending tax returns online ) School. Amending tax returns online   The term “school” includes high schools, colleges, universities, and technical, trade, and mechanical schools. Amending tax returns online A school does not include an on-the-job training course, correspondence school, or school offering courses only through the Internet. Amending tax returns online Work-Related Expense Test Child and dependent care expenses must be work-related to qualify for the credit. Amending tax returns online Expenses are considered work-related only if both of the following are true. Amending tax returns online They allow you (and your spouse if filing jointly) to work or look for work. Amending tax returns online They are for a qualifying person's care. Amending tax returns online Working or Looking for Work To be work-related, your expenses must allow you to work or look for work. Amending tax returns online If you are married, generally both you and your spouse must work or look for work. Amending tax returns online One spouse is treated as working during any month he or she is a full-time student or is not physically or mentally able to care for himself or herself. Amending tax returns online Your work can be for others or in your own business or partnership. Amending tax returns online It can be either full time or part time. Amending tax returns online Work also includes actively looking for work. Amending tax returns online However, if you do not find a job and have no earned income for the year, you cannot take this credit. Amending tax returns online See Earned Income Test , earlier. Amending tax returns online An expense is not considered work-related merely because you had it while you were working. Amending tax returns online The purpose of the expense must be to allow you to work. Amending tax returns online Whether your expenses allow you to work or look for work depends on the facts. Amending tax returns online Example 1. Amending tax returns online The cost of a babysitter while you and your spouse go out to eat is not normally a work-related expense. Amending tax returns online Example 2. Amending tax returns online You work during the day. Amending tax returns online Your spouse works at night and sleeps during the day. Amending tax returns online You pay for care of your 5-year-old child during the hours when you are working and your spouse is sleeping. Amending tax returns online Your expenses are considered work-related. Amending tax returns online Volunteer work. Amending tax returns online    For this purpose, you are not considered to be working if you do unpaid volunteer work or volunteer work for a nominal salary. Amending tax returns online Work for part of year. Amending tax returns online   If you work or actively look for work during only part of the period covered by the expenses, then you must figure your expenses for each day. Amending tax returns online For example, if you work all year and pay care expenses of $250 a month ($3,000 for the year), all the expenses are work-related. Amending tax returns online However, if you work or look for work for only 2 months and 15 days during the year and pay expenses of $250 a month, your work-related expenses are limited to $625 (2½ months × $250). Amending tax returns online Temporary absence from work. Amending tax returns online   You do not have to figure your expenses for each day during a short, temporary absence from work, such as for vacation or a minor illness, if you have to pay for care anyway. Amending tax returns online Instead, you can figure your credit including the expenses you paid for the period of absence. Amending tax returns online   An absence of 2 weeks or less is a short, temporary absence. Amending tax returns online An absence of more than 2 weeks may be considered a short, temporary absence, depending on the circumstances. Amending tax returns online Example. Amending tax returns online You pay a nanny to care for your 2-year-old son and 4-year-old daughter so you can work. Amending tax returns online You become ill and miss 4 months of work but receive sick pay. Amending tax returns online You continue to pay the nanny to care for the children while you are ill. Amending tax returns online Your absence is not a short, temporary absence, and your expenses are not considered work-related. Amending tax returns online Part-time work. Amending tax returns online   If you work part-time, you generally must figure your expenses for each day. Amending tax returns online However, if you have to pay for care weekly, monthly, or in another way that includes both days worked and days not worked, you can figure your credit including the expenses you paid for days you did not work. Amending tax returns online Any day when you work at least 1 hour is a day of work. Amending tax returns online Example 1. Amending tax returns online You work 3 days a week. Amending tax returns online While you work, your 6-year-old child attends a dependent care center, which complies with all state and local regulations. Amending tax returns online You can pay the center $150 for any 3 days a week or $250 for 5 days a week. Amending tax returns online Your child attends the center 5 days a week. Amending tax returns online Your work-related expenses are limited to $150 a week. Amending tax returns online Example 2. Amending tax returns online The facts are the same as in Example 1 except the center does not offer a 3-day option. Amending tax returns online The entire $250 weekly fee may be a work-related expense. Amending tax returns online Care of a Qualifying Person To be work-related, your expenses must be to provide care for a qualifying person. Amending tax returns online You do not have to choose the least expensive way of providing care. Amending tax returns online The cost of a paid care provider may be an expense for the care of a qualifying person even if another care provider is available at no cost. Amending tax returns online Expenses are for the care of a qualifying person only if their main purpose is the person's well-being and protection. Amending tax returns online Expenses for household services qualify if part of the services is for the care of qualifying persons. Amending tax returns online See Household services , later. Amending tax returns online Expenses not for care. Amending tax returns online   Expenses for care do not include amounts you pay for food, lodging, clothing, education, and entertainment. Amending tax returns online However, you can include small amounts paid for these items if they are incidental to and cannot be separated from the cost of caring for the qualifying person. Amending tax returns online   Child support payments are not for care and do not qualify for the credit. Amending tax returns online Education. Amending tax returns online   Expenses for a child in nursery school, preschool, or similar programs for children below the level of kindergarten are expenses for care. Amending tax returns online Expenses to attend kindergarten or a higher grade are not expenses for care. Amending tax returns online Do not use these expenses to figure your credit. Amending tax returns online   However, expenses for before- or after-school care of a child in kindergarten or a higher grade may be expenses for care. Amending tax returns online   Summer school and tutoring programs are not for care. Amending tax returns online Example 1. Amending tax returns online You take your 3-year-old child to a nursery school that provides lunch and educational activities as a part of its preschool childcare service. Amending tax returns online The lunch and educational activities are incidental to the childcare, and their cost cannot be separated from the cost of care. Amending tax returns online You can count the total cost when you figure the credit. Amending tax returns online Example 2. Amending tax returns online You place your 10-year-old child in a boarding school so you can work full time. Amending tax returns online Only the part of the boarding school expense that is for the care of your child is a work-related expense. Amending tax returns online You can count that part of the expense in figuring your credit if it can be separated from the cost of education. Amending tax returns online You cannot count any part of the amount you pay the school for your child's education. Amending tax returns online Care outside your home. Amending tax returns online   You can count the cost of care provided outside your home if the care is for your dependent under age 13 or any other qualifying person who regularly spends at least 8 hours each day in your home. Amending tax returns online Dependent care center. Amending tax returns online   You can count care provided outside your home by a dependent care center only if the center complies with all state and local regulations that apply to these centers. Amending tax returns online   A dependent care center is a place that provides care for more than six persons (other than persons who live there) and receives a fee, payment, or grant for providing services for any of those persons, even if the center is not run for profit. Amending tax returns online Camp. Amending tax returns online   The cost of sending your child to an overnight camp is not considered a work-related expense. Amending tax returns online The cost of sending your child to a day camp may be a work-related expense, even if the camp specializes in a particular activity, such as computers or soccer. Amending tax returns online Transportation. Amending tax returns online   If a care provider takes a qualifying person to or from a place where care is provided, that transportation is for the care of the qualifying person. Amending tax returns online This includes transportation by bus, subway, taxi, or private car. Amending tax returns online However, transportation not provided by a care provider is not for the care of a qualifying person. Amending tax returns online Also, if you pay the transportation cost for the care provider to come to your home, that expense is not for care of a qualifying person. Amending tax returns online Fees and deposits. Amending tax returns online   Fees you paid to an agency to get the services of a care provider, deposits you paid to an agency or preschool, application fees, and other indirect expenses are work-related expenses if you have to pay them to get care, even though they are not directly for care. Amending tax returns online However, a forfeited deposit is not for the care of a qualifying person if care is not provided. Amending tax returns online Example 1. Amending tax returns online You paid a fee to an agency to get the services of the nanny who cares for your 2-year-old daughter while you work. Amending tax returns online The fee you paid is a work-related expense. Amending tax returns online Example 2. Amending tax returns online You placed a deposit with a preschool to reserve a place for your 3-year-old child. Amending tax returns online You later sent your child to a different preschool and forfeited the deposit. Amending tax returns online The forfeited deposit is not for care and so is not a work-related expense. Amending tax returns online Household services. Amending tax returns online   Expenses you pay for household services meet the work-related expense test if they are at least partly for the well-being and protection of a qualifying person. Amending tax returns online   Household services are ordinary and usual services done in and around your home that are necessary to run your home. Amending tax returns online They include the services of a housekeeper, maid, or cook. Amending tax returns online However, they do not include the services of a chauffeur, bartender, or gardener. Amending tax returns online See Household Services in Publication 503 for more information. Amending tax returns online   In this chapter, the term housekeeper refers to any household employee whose services include the care of a qualifying person. Amending tax returns online Taxes paid on wages. Amending tax returns online   The taxes you pay on wages for qualifying child and dependent care services are work-related expenses. Amending tax returns online See Employment Taxes for Household Employers , later. Amending tax returns online Payments to Relatives or Dependents You can count work-related payments you make to relatives who are not your dependents, even if they live in your home. Amending tax returns online However, do not count any amounts you pay to: A dependent for whom you (or your spouse if filing jointly) can claim an exemption, Your child who was under age 19 at the end of the year, even if he or she is not your dependent, A person who was your spouse any time during the year, or The parent of your qualifying person if your qualifying person is your child and under age 13. Amending tax returns online Joint Return Test Generally, married couples must file a joint return to take the credit. Amending tax returns online However, if you are legally separated or living apart from your spouse, you may be able to file a separate return and still take the credit. Amending tax returns online Legally separated. Amending tax returns online   You are not considered married if you are legally separated from your spouse under a decree of divorce or separate maintenance. Amending tax returns online You may be eligible to take the credit on your return using head of household filing status. Amending tax returns online Married and living apart. Amending tax returns online   You are not considered married and are eligible to take the credit if all the following apply. Amending tax returns online You file a return apart from your spouse. Amending tax returns online Your home is the home of a qualifying person for more than half the year. Amending tax returns online You pay more than half the cost of keeping up your home for the year. Amending tax returns online Your spouse does not live in your home for the last 6 months of the year. Amending tax returns online Costs of keeping up a home. Amending tax returns online   The costs of keeping up a home normally include property taxes, mortgage interest, rent, utility charges, home repairs, insurance on the home, and food eaten at home. Amending tax returns online   The costs of keeping up a home do not include payments for clothing, education, medical treatment, vacations, life insurance, transportation, or mortgage principal. Amending tax returns online   They also do not include the purchase, permanent improvement, or replacement of property. Amending tax returns online For example, you cannot include the cost of replacing a water heater. Amending tax returns online However, you can include the cost of repairing a water heater. Amending tax returns online Death of spouse. Amending tax returns online   If your spouse died during the year and you do not remarry before the end of the year, you generally must file a joint return to take the credit. Amending tax returns online If you do remarry before the end of the year, the credit can be claimed on your deceased spouse's return. Amending tax returns online Provider Identification Test You must identify all persons or organizations that provide care for your child or dependent. Amending tax returns online Use Form 2441, Part I, to show the information. Amending tax returns online If you do not have any care providers and you are filing Form 2441 only to report taxable income in Part III, enter “none” in line 1, column (a). Amending tax returns online Information needed. Amending tax returns online   To identify the care provider, you must give the provider's: Name, Address, and Taxpayer identification number. Amending tax returns online   If the care provider is an individual, the taxpayer identification number is his or her social security number or individual taxpayer identification number. Amending tax returns online If the care provider is an organization, then it is the employer identification number (EIN). Amending tax returns online   You do not have to show the taxpayer identification number if the care provider is a tax-exempt organization (such as a church or school). Amending tax returns online In this case, enter “Tax-Exempt” in the space where Form 2441 asks for the number. Amending tax returns online   If you cannot provide all of the information or if the information is incorrect, you must be able to show that you used due diligence (discussed later) in trying to furnish the necessary information. Amending tax returns online Getting the information. Amending tax returns online   You can use Form W-10 to request the required information from the care provider. Amending tax returns online If you do not use Form W-10, you can get the information from one of the other sources listed in the instructions for Form W-10 including: A copy of the provider's social security card, A copy of the provider's completed Form W-4 if he or she is your household employee, A copy of the statement furnished by your employer if the provider is your employer's dependent care plan, or A letter or invoice from the provider if it shows the information. Amending tax returns online    You should keep this information with your tax records. Amending tax returns online Do not send Form W-10 (or other document containing this information) to the Internal Revenue Service. Amending tax returns online Due diligence. Amending tax returns online   If the care provider information you give is incorrect or incomplete, your credit may not be allowed. Amending tax returns online However, if you can show that you used due diligence in trying to supply the information, you can still claim the credit. Amending tax returns online   You can show due diligence by getting and keeping the provider's completed Form W-10 or one of the other sources of information just listed. Amending tax returns online Care providers can be penalized if they do not provide this information to you or if they provide incorrect information. Amending tax returns online Provider refusal. Amending tax returns online   If the provider refuses to give you their identifying information, you should report on Form 2441 whatever information you have (such as the name and address). Amending tax returns online Enter “See Attached Statement” in the columns calling for the information you do not have. Amending tax returns online Then attach a statement explaining that you requested the information from the care provider, but the provider did not give you the information. Amending tax returns online Be sure to write your name and social security number on this statement. Amending tax returns online The statement will show that you used due diligence in trying to furnish the necessary information. Amending tax returns online U. Amending tax returns online S. Amending tax returns online citizens and resident aliens living abroad. Amending tax returns online   If you are living abroad, your care provider may not have, and may not be required to get, a U. Amending tax returns online S. Amending tax returns online taxpayer identification number (for example, an SSN or EIN). Amending tax returns online If so, enter “LAFCP” (Living Abroad Foreign Care Provider) in the space for the care provider's taxpayer identification number. Amending tax returns online How To Figure the Credit Your credit is a percentage of your work-related expenses. Amending tax returns online Your expenses are subject to the earned income limit and the dollar limit. Amending tax returns online The percentage is based on your adjusted gross income. Amending tax returns online Figuring Total Work-Related Expenses To figure the credit for 2013 work-related expenses, count only those you paid by December 31, 2013. Amending tax returns online Expenses prepaid in an earlier year. Amending tax returns online   If you pay for services before they are provided, you can count the prepaid expenses only in the year the care is received. Amending tax returns online Claim the expenses for the later year as if they were actually paid in that later year. Amending tax returns online Expenses not paid until the following year. Amending tax returns online   Do not count 2012 expenses that you paid in 2013 as work-related expenses for 2013. Amending tax returns online You may be able to claim an additional credit for them on your 2013 return, but you must figure it separately. Amending tax returns online See Payments for prior year's expenses under Amount of Credit in Publication 503. Amending tax returns online    If you had expenses in 2013 that you did not pay until 2014, you cannot count them when figuring your 2013 credit. Amending tax returns online You may be able to claim a credit for them on your 2014 return. Amending tax returns online Expenses reimbursed. Amending tax returns online   If a state social services agency pays you a nontaxable amount to reimburse you for some of your child and dependent care expenses, you cannot count the expenses that are reimbursed as work-related expenses. Amending tax returns online Example. Amending tax returns online You paid work-related expenses of $3,000. Amending tax returns online You are reimbursed $2,000 by a state social services agency. Amending tax returns online You can use only $1,000 to figure your credit. Amending tax returns online Medical expenses. Amending tax returns online   Some expenses for the care of qualifying persons who are not able to care for themselves may qualify as work-related expenses and also as medical expenses. Amending tax returns online You can use them either way, but you cannot use the same expenses to claim both a credit and a medical expense deduction. Amending tax returns online   If you use these expenses to figure the credit and they are more than the earned income limit or the dollar limit, discussed later, you can add the excess to your medical expenses. Amending tax returns online However, if you use your total expenses to figure your medical expense deduction, you cannot use any part of them to figure your credit. Amending tax returns online    Amounts excluded from your income under your employer's dependent care benefits plan cannot be used to claim a medical expense deduction. Amending tax returns online Dependent Care Benefits If you receive dependent care benefits, your dollar limit for purposes of the credit may be reduced. Amending tax returns online See Reduced Dollar Limit , later. Amending tax returns online But, even if you cannot take the credit, you may be able to take an exclusion or deduction for the dependent care benefits. Amending tax returns online Dependent care benefits. Amending tax returns online   Dependent care benefits include: Amounts your employer paid directly to either you or your care provider for the care of your qualifying person while you work, The fair market value of care in a daycare facility provided or sponsored by your employer, and Pre-tax contributions you made under a dependent care flexible spending arrangement. Amending tax returns online Your salary may have been reduced to pay for these benefits. Amending tax returns online If you received benefits as an employee, they should be shown in box 10 of your Form W-2. Amending tax returns online See Statement for employee , later. Amending tax returns online Benefits you received as a partner should be shown in box 13 of your Schedule K-1 (Form 1065) with code O. Amending tax returns online Enter the amount of these benefits on Form 2441, Part III, line 12. Amending tax returns online Exclusion or deduction. Amending tax returns online   If your employer provides dependent care benefits under a qualified plan, you may be able to exclude these benefits from your income. Amending tax returns online Your employer can tell you whether your benefit plan qualifies. Amending tax returns online To claim the exclusion, you must complete Part III of Form 2441. Amending tax returns online You cannot use Form 1040EZ. Amending tax returns online   If you are self-employed and receive benefits from a qualified dependent care benefit plan, you are treated as both employer and employee. Amending tax returns online Therefore, you would not get an exclusion from wages. Amending tax returns online Instead, you would get a deduction on Form 1040, Schedule C, line 14; Schedule E, line 19 or 28; or Schedule F, line 15. Amending tax returns online To claim the deduction, you must use Form 2441. Amending tax returns online   The amount you can exclude or deduct is limited to the smallest of: The total amount of dependent care benefits you received during the year, The total amount of qualified expenses you incurred during the year, Your earned income, Your spouse's earned income, or $5,000 ($2,500 if married filing separately). Amending tax returns online The definition of earned income for the exclusion or deduction is the same as the definition used when figuring the credit except that earned income for the exclusion or deduction does not include any dependent care benefits you receive. Amending tax returns online See Earned Income Limit, later. Amending tax returns online    You can choose to include your nontaxable combat pay in earned income when figuring your exclusion or deduction, even if you choose not to include it in earned income for the earned income credit or the credit for child and dependent care expenses. Amending tax returns online Statement for employee. Amending tax returns online   Your employer must give you a Form W-2 (or similar statement) showing in box 10 the total amount of dependent care benefits provided to you during the year under a qualified plan. Amending tax returns online Your employer will also include any dependent care benefits over $5,000 in your wages shown on your Form W-2 in box 1. Amending tax returns online Effect of exclusion on credit. Amending tax returns online   If you exclude dependent care benefits from your income, the amount of the excluded benefits: Is not included in your work-related expenses, and Reduces the dollar limit, discussed later. Amending tax returns online Earned Income Limit The amount of work-related expenses you use to figure your credit cannot be more than: Your earned income for the year if you are single at the end of the year, or The smaller of your or your spouse's earned income for the year if you are married at the end of the year. Amending tax returns online Earned income is defined under Earned Income Test , earlier. Amending tax returns online For purposes of item (2), use your spouse's earned income for the entire year, even if you were married for only part of the year. Amending tax returns online Separated spouse. Amending tax returns online   If you are legally separated or married and living apart from your spouse (as described under Joint Return Test , earlier), you are not considered married for purposes of the earned income limit. Amending tax returns online Use only your income in figuring the earned income limit. Amending tax returns online Surviving spouse. Amending tax returns online   If your spouse died during the year and you file a joint return as a surviving spouse, you may, but are not required to, take into account the earned income of your spouse who died during the year. Amending tax returns online Community property laws. Amending tax returns online   You should disregard community property laws when you figure earned income for this credit. Amending tax returns online You or your spouse is a student or not able to care for self. Amending tax returns online   Your spouse who is either a full-time student or not able to care for himself or herself is treated as having earned income. Amending tax returns online His or her earned income for each month is considered to be at least $250 if there is one qualifying person in your home, or at least $500 if there are two or more. Amending tax returns online Spouse works. Amending tax returns online   If your spouse works during that month, use the higher of $250 (or $500) or his or her actual earned income for that month. Amending tax returns online Spouse qualifies for part of month. Amending tax returns online    If your spouse is a full-time student or not able to care for himself or herself for only part of a month, the full $250 (or $500) still applies for that month. Amending tax returns online You are a student or not able to care for self. Amending tax returns online   These rules also apply if you are a student or not able to care for yourself and you are filing a joint return. Amending tax returns online For each month or part of a month you are a student or not able to care for yourself, your earned income is considered to be at least $250 (or $500). Amending tax returns online If you also work during that month, use the higher of $250 (or $500) or your actual earned income for that month. Amending tax returns online Both spouses qualify. Amending tax returns online   If, in the same month, both you and your spouse are either full-time students or not able to care for yourselves, only one spouse can be considered to have this earned income of $250 (or $500) for that month. Amending tax returns online Dollar Limit There is a dollar limit on the amount of your work-related expenses you can use to figure the credit. Amending tax returns online This limit is $3,000 for one qualifying person, or $6,000 for two or more qualifying persons. Amending tax returns online If you paid work-related expenses for the care of two or more qualifying persons, the applicable dollar limit is $6,000. Amending tax returns online This $6,000 limit does not need to be divided equally among them. Amending tax returns online For example, if your work-related expenses for the care of one qualifying person are $3,200 and your work-related expenses for another qualifying person are $2,800, you can use the total, $6,000, when figuring the credit. Amending tax returns online Yearly limit. Amending tax returns online   The dollar limit is a yearly limit. Amending tax returns online The amount of the dollar limit remains the same no matter how long, during the year, you have a qualifying person in your household. Amending tax returns online Use the $3,000 limit if you paid work-related expenses for the care of one qualifying person at any time during the year. Amending tax returns online Use $6,000 if you paid work-related expenses for the care of more than one qualifying person at any time during the year. Amending tax returns online Reduced Dollar Limit If you received dependent care benefits that you exclude or deduct from your income, you must subtract that amount from the dollar limit that applies to you. Amending tax returns online Your reduced dollar limit is figured on Form 2441, Part III. Amending tax returns online See Dependent Care Benefits , earlier, for information on excluding or deducting these benefits. Amending tax returns online Example 1. Amending tax returns online George is a widower with one child and earns $24,000 a year. Amending tax returns online He pays work-related expenses of $2,900 for the care of his 4-year-old child and qualifies to claim the credit for child and dependent care expenses. Amending tax returns online His employer pays an additional $1,000 under a dependent care benefit plan. Amending tax returns online This $1,000 is excluded from George's income. Amending tax returns online Although the dollar limit for his work-related expenses is $3,000 (one qualifying person), George figures his credit on only $2,000 of the $2,900 work-related expenses he paid. Amending tax returns online This is because his dollar limit is reduced as shown next. Amending tax returns online   George's Reduced Dollar Limit 1) Maximum allowable expenses for one qualifying person $3,000 2) Minus: Dependent care benefits George excludes from income −1,000 3) Reduced dollar limit on expenses George can use for the credit $2,000 Example 2. Amending tax returns online Randall is married and both he and his wife are employed. Amending tax returns online Each has earned income in excess of $6,000. Amending tax returns online They have two children, Anne and Andy, ages 2 and 4, who attend a daycare facility licensed and regulated by the state. Amending tax returns online Randall's work-related expenses are $6,000 for the year. Amending tax returns online Randall's employer has a dependent care assistance program as part of its cafeteria plan, which allows employees to make pre-tax contributions to a dependent care flexible spending arrangement. Amending tax returns online Randall has elected to take the maximum $5,000 exclusion from his salary to cover dependent care expenses through this program. Amending tax returns online Although the dollar limit for his work- related expenses is $6,000 (two or more qualifying persons), Randall figures his credit on only $1,000 of the $6,000 work-related expense paid. Amending tax returns online This is because his dollar limit is reduced as shown next. Amending tax returns online   Randall's Reduced Dollar Limit 1) Maximum allowable expenses for two qualifying persons $6,000 2) Minus: Dependent care benefits Randall selects from employer's cafeteria plan and excludes from income −5,000 3) Reduced dollar limit on expenses Randall can use for the credit $1,000 Amount of Credit To determine the amount of your credit, multiply your work-related expenses (after applying the earned income and dollar limits) by a percentage. Amending tax returns online This percentage depends on your adjusted gross income shown on Form 1040, line 38, or Form 1040A, line 22. Amending tax returns online The following table shows the percentage to use based on adjusted gross income. Amending tax returns online   IF your adjusted gross income is: THEN the percentage is:       Over   But not over         $0   $15,000   35%       15,000   17,000   34%       17,000   19,000   33%       19,000   21,000   32%       21,000   23,000   31%       23,000   25,000   30%       25,000   27,000   29%       27,000   29,000   28%       29,000   31,000   27%       31,000   33,000   26%       33,000   35,000   25%       35,000   37,000   24%       37,000   39,000   23%       39,000   41,000   22%       41,000   43,000   21%       43,000   No limit   20%   How To Claim the Credit To claim the credit, you can file Form 1040 or Form 1040A. Amending tax returns online You cannot claim the credit on Form 1040EZ. Amending tax returns online Form 1040 or 1040A. Amending tax returns online   You must complete Form 2441 and attach it to your Form 1040 or 1040A. Amending tax returns online Enter the credit on Form 1040, line 48, or Form 1040A, line 29. Amending tax returns online Limit on credit. Amending tax returns online   The amount of credit you can claim is generally limited to the amount of your tax. Amending tax returns online For more information, see the Instructions for Form 2441. Amending tax returns online Tax credit not refundable. Amending tax returns online   You cannot get a refund for any part of the credit that is more than this limit. Amending tax returns online Recordkeeping. Amending tax returns online You should keep records of your work-related expenses. Amending tax returns online Also, if your dependent or spouse is not able to care for himself or herself, your records should show both the nature and the length of the disability. Amending tax returns online Other records you should keep to support your claim for the credit are described earlier under Provider Identification Test . Amending tax returns online Employment Taxes for Household Employers If you pay someone to come to your home and care for your dependent or spouse, you may be a household employer. Amending tax returns online If you are a household employer, you will need an employer identification number (EIN) and you may have to pay employment taxes. Amending tax returns online If the individuals who work in your home are self-employed, you are not liable for any of the taxes discussed in this section. Amending tax returns online Self-employed persons who are in business for themselves are not household employees. Amending tax returns online Usually, you are not a household employer if the person who cares for your dependent or spouse does so at his or her home or place of business. Amending tax returns online If you use a placement agency that exercises control over what work is done and how it will be done by a babysitter or companion who works in your home, the worker is not your employee. Amending tax returns online This control could include providing rules of conduct and appearance and requiring regular reports. Amending tax returns online In this case, you do not have to pay employment taxes. Amending tax returns online But, if an agency merely gives you a list of sitters and you hire one from that list, and pay the sitter directly, the sitter may be your employee. Amending tax returns online If you have a household employee, you may be subject to: Social security and Medicare taxes, Federal unemployment tax, and Federal income tax withholding. Amending tax returns online Social security and Medicare taxes are generally withheld from the employee's pay and matched by the employer. Amending tax returns online Federal unemployment (FUTA) tax is paid by the employer only and provides for payments of unemployment compensation to workers who have lost their jobs. Amending tax returns online Federal income tax is withheld from the employee's total pay if the employee asks you to do so and you agree. Amending tax returns online For more information on a household employer's tax responsibilities, see Publication 926 and Schedule H (Form 1040) and its instructions. Amending tax returns online State employment tax. Amending tax returns online   You may also have to pay state unemployment tax. Amending tax returns online Contact your state unemployment tax office for information. Amending tax returns online You should also find out whether you need to pay or collect other state employment taxes or carry workers' compensation insurance. Amending tax returns online For a list of state unemployment tax agencies, visit the U. Amending tax returns online S. Amending tax returns online Department of Labor's website. Amending tax returns online A link to that website is in Publication 926, or you can find it with an online search. Amending tax returns online Prev  Up  Next   Home   More Online Publications