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Free tax service 11. Free tax service   Social Security and Equivalent Railroad Retirement Benefits Table of Contents Introduction Useful Items - You may want to see: Are Any of Your Benefits Taxable? How To Report Your BenefitsHow Much Is Taxable? Examples Deductions Related to Your BenefitsRepayments More Than Gross Benefits Introduction This chapter explains the federal income tax rules for social security benefits and equivalent tier 1 railroad retirement benefits. Free tax service It explains the following topics. Free tax service How to figure whether your benefits are taxable. Free tax service How to use the social security benefits worksheet (with examples). Free tax service How to report your taxable benefits. Free tax service How to treat repayments that are more than the benefits you received during the year. Free tax service Social security benefits include monthly retirement, survivor, and disability benefits. Free tax service They do not include supplemental security income (SSI) payments, which are not taxable. Free tax service Equivalent tier 1 railroad retirement benefits are the part of tier 1 benefits that a railroad employee or beneficiary would have been entitled to receive under the social security system. Free tax service They are commonly called the social security equivalent benefit (SSEB) portion of tier 1 benefits. Free tax service If you received these benefits during 2013, you should have received a Form SSA-1099, Social Security Benefit Statement, or Form RRB-1099, Payments by the Railroad Retirement Board. Free tax service These forms show the amounts received and repaid, and taxes withheld for the year. Free tax service You may receive more than one of these forms for the same year. Free tax service You should add the amounts shown on all the Forms SSA-1099 and Forms RRB-1099 you receive for the year to determine the total amounts received and repaid, and taxes withheld for that year. Free tax service See the Appendix at the end of Publication 915 for more information. Free tax service Note. Free tax service When the term “benefits” is used in this chapter, it applies to both social security benefits and the SSEB portion of tier 1 railroad retirement benefits. Free tax service What is not covered in this chapter. Free tax service   This chapter does not cover the tax rules for the following railroad retirement benefits. Free tax service Non-social security equivalent benefit (NSSEB) portion of tier 1 benefits. Free tax service Tier 2 benefits. Free tax service Vested dual benefits. Free tax service Supplemental annuity benefits. Free tax service For information on these benefits, see Publication 575, Pension and Annuity Income. Free tax service   This chapter does not cover the tax rules for social security benefits reported on Form SSA-1042S, Social Security Benefit Statement, or Form RRB-1042S, Statement for Nonresident Alien Recipients of: Payments by the Railroad Retirement Board. Free tax service For information about these benefits, see Publication 519, U. Free tax service S. Free tax service Tax Guide for Aliens, and Publication 915, Social Security and Equivalent Railroad Retirement Benefits. Free tax service   This chapter also does not cover the tax rules for foreign social security benefits. Free tax service These benefits are taxable as annuities, unless they are exempt from U. Free tax service S. Free tax service tax or treated as a U. Free tax service S. Free tax service social security benefit under a tax treaty. Free tax service Useful Items - You may want to see: Publication 505 Tax Withholding and Estimated Tax 575 Pension and Annuity Income 590 Individual Retirement Arrangements (IRAs) 915 Social Security and Equivalent Railroad Retirement Benefits Forms (and Instructions) 1040-ES Estimated Tax for Individuals SSA-1099 Social Security Benefit Statement RRB-1099 Payments by the Railroad Retirement Board W-4V Voluntary Withholding Request Are Any of Your Benefits Taxable? To find out whether any of your benefits may be taxable, compare the base amount for your filing status with the total of: One-half of your benefits, plus All your other income, including tax-exempt interest. Free tax service When making this comparison, do not reduce your other income by any exclusions for: Interest from qualified U. Free tax service S. Free tax service savings bonds, Employer-provided adoption benefits, Foreign earned income or foreign housing, or Income earned by bona fide residents of American Samoa or Puerto Rico. Free tax service Children's benefits. Free tax service   The rules in this chapter apply to benefits received by children. Free tax service See Who is taxed , later. Free tax service Figuring total income. Free tax service   To figure the total of one-half of your benefits plus your other income, use Worksheet 11-1 later in this discussion. Free tax service If the total is more than your base amount, part of your benefits may be taxable. Free tax service    If you are married and file a joint return for 2013, you and your spouse must combine your incomes and your benefits to figure whether any of your combined benefits are taxable. Free tax service Even if your spouse did not receive any benefits, you must add your spouse's income to yours to figure whether any of your benefits are taxable. Free tax service    If the only income you received during 2013 was your social security or the SSEB portion of tier 1 railroad retirement benefits, your benefits generally are not taxable and you probably do not have to file a return. Free tax service If you have income in addition to your benefits, you may have to file a return even if none of your benefits are taxable. Free tax service Base amount. Free tax service   Your base amount is: $25,000 if you are single, head of household, or qualifying widow(er), $25,000 if you are married filing separately and lived apart from your spouse for all of 2013, $32,000 if you are married filing jointly, or $-0- if you are married filing separately and lived with your spouse at any time during 2013. Free tax service Worksheet 11-1. Free tax service   You can use Worksheet 11-1 to figure the amount of income to compare with your base amount. Free tax service This is a quick way to check whether some of your benefits may be taxable. Free tax service Worksheet 11-1. Free tax service A Quick Way To Check if Your Benefits May Be Taxable A. Free tax service Enter the amount from box 5 of all your Forms SSA-1099 and RRB-1099. Free tax service Include the full amount of any lump-sum benefit payments received in 2013, for 2013 and earlier years. Free tax service (If you received more than one form, combine the amounts from box 5 and enter the total. Free tax service ) A. Free tax service   Note. Free tax service If the amount on line A is zero or less, stop here; none of your benefits are taxable this year. Free tax service B. Free tax service Enter one-half of the amount on line A B. Free tax service   C. Free tax service Enter your taxable pensions, wages, interest, dividends, and other taxable income C. Free tax service   D. Free tax service Enter any tax-exempt interest income (such as interest on municipal bonds) plus any exclusions from income (listed earlier) D. Free tax service   E. Free tax service Add lines B, C, and D E. Free tax service   Note. Free tax service Compare the amount on line E to your base amount for your filing status. Free tax service If the amount on line E equals or is less than the base amount for your filing status, none of your benefits are taxable this year. Free tax service If the amount on line E is more than your base amount, some of your benefits may be taxable. Free tax service You need to complete Worksheet 1 in Publication 915 (or the Social Security Benefits Worksheet in your tax form instructions). Free tax service If none of your benefits are taxable, but you otherwise must file a tax return, see Benefits not taxable , later, under How To Report Your Benefits. Free tax service Example. Free tax service You and your spouse (both over 65) are filing a joint return for 2013 and you both received social security benefits during the year. Free tax service In January 2014, you received a Form SSA-1099 showing net benefits of $7,500 in box 5. Free tax service Your spouse received a Form SSA-1099 showing net benefits of $3,500 in box 5. Free tax service You also received a taxable pension of $22,800 and interest income of $500. Free tax service You did not have any tax-exempt interest income. Free tax service Your benefits are not taxable for 2013 because your income, as figured in Worksheet 11-1, is not more than your base amount ($32,000) for married filing jointly. Free tax service Even though none of your benefits are taxable, you must file a return for 2013 because your taxable gross income ($23,300) exceeds the minimum filing requirement amount for your filing status. Free tax service Filled-in Worksheet 11-1. Free tax service A Quick Way To Check if Your Benefits May Be Taxable A. Free tax service Enter the amount from box 5 of all your Forms SSA-1099 and RRB-1099. Free tax service Include the full amount of any lump-sum benefit payments received in 2013, for 2013 and earlier years. Free tax service (If you received more than one form, combine the amounts from box 5 and enter the total. Free tax service ) A. Free tax service $11,000 Note. Free tax service If the amount on line A is zero or less, stop here; none of your benefits are taxable this year. Free tax service B. Free tax service Enter one-half of the amount on line A B. Free tax service 5,500 C. Free tax service Enter your taxable pensions, wages, interest, dividends, and other taxable income C. Free tax service 23,300 D. Free tax service Enter any tax-exempt interest income (such as interest on municipal bonds) plus any exclusions from income (listed earlier) D. Free tax service -0- E. Free tax service Add lines B, C, and D E. Free tax service $28,800 Note. Free tax service Compare the amount on line E to your base amount for your filing status. Free tax service If the amount on line E equals or is less than the base amount for your filing status, none of your benefits are taxable this year. Free tax service If the amount on line E is more than your base amount, some of your benefits may be taxable. Free tax service You need to complete Worksheet 1 in Publication 915 (or the Social Security Benefits Worksheet in your tax form instructions). Free tax service If none of your benefits are taxable, but you otherwise must file a tax return, see Benefits not taxable , later, under How To Report Your Benefits. Free tax service Who is taxed. Free tax service   Benefits are included in the taxable income (to the extent they are taxable) of the person who has the legal right to receive the benefits. Free tax service For example, if you and your child receive benefits, but the check for your child is made out in your name, you must use only your part of the benefits to see whether any benefits are taxable to you. Free tax service One-half of the part that belongs to your child must be added to your child's other income to see whether any of those benefits are taxable to your child. Free tax service Repayment of benefits. Free tax service   Any repayment of benefits you made during 2013 must be subtracted from the gross benefits you received in 2013. Free tax service It does not matter whether the repayment was for a benefit you received in 2013 or in an earlier year. Free tax service If you repaid more than the gross benefits you received in 2013, see Repayments More Than Gross Benefits , later. Free tax service   Your gross benefits are shown in box 3 of Form SSA-1099 or RRB-1099. Free tax service Your repayments are shown in box 4. Free tax service The amount in box 5 shows your net benefits for 2013 (box 3 minus box 4). Free tax service Use the amount in box 5 to figure whether any of your benefits are taxable. Free tax service Tax withholding and estimated tax. Free tax service   You can choose to have federal income tax withheld from your social security benefits and/or the SSEB portion of your tier 1 railroad retirement benefits. Free tax service If you choose to do this, you must complete a Form W-4V. Free tax service   If you do not choose to have income tax withheld, you may have to request additional withholding from other income or pay estimated tax during the year. Free tax service For details, see Publication 505 or the instructions for Form 1040-ES. Free tax service How To Report Your Benefits If part of your benefits are taxable, you must use Form 1040 or Form 1040A. Free tax service You cannot use Form 1040EZ. Free tax service Reporting on Form 1040. Free tax service   Report your net benefits (the total amount from box 5 of all your Forms SSA-1099 and Forms RRB-1099) on line 20a and the taxable part on line 20b. Free tax service If you are married filing separately and you lived apart from your spouse for all of 2013, also enter “D” to the right of the word “benefits” on line 20a. Free tax service Reporting on Form 1040A. Free tax service   Report your net benefits (the total amount from box 5 of all your Forms SSA-1099 and Forms RRB-1099) on line 14a and the taxable part on line 14b. Free tax service If you are married filing separately and you lived apart from your spouse for all of 2013, also enter “D” to the right of the word “benefits” on line 14a. Free tax service Benefits not taxable. Free tax service   If you are filing Form 1040EZ, do not report any benefits on your tax return. Free tax service If you are filing Form 1040 or Form 1040A, report your net benefits (the total amount from box 5 of all your Forms SSA-1099 and Forms RRB-1099) on Form 1040, line 20a, or Form 1040A, line 14a. Free tax service Enter -0- on Form 1040, line 20b, or Form 1040A, line 14b. Free tax service If you are married filing separately and you lived apart from your spouse for all of 2013, also enter “D” to the right of the word “benefits” on Form 1040, line 20a, or Form 1040A, line 14a. Free tax service How Much Is Taxable? If part of your benefits are taxable, how much is taxable depends on the total amount of your benefits and other income. Free tax service Generally, the higher that total amount, the greater the taxable part of your benefits. Free tax service Maximum taxable part. Free tax service   Generally, up to 50% of your benefits will be taxable. Free tax service However, up to 85% of your benefits can be taxable if either of the following situations applies to you. Free tax service The total of one-half of your benefits and all your other income is more than $34,000 ($44,000 if you are married filing jointly). Free tax service You are married filing separately and lived with your spouse at any time during 2013. Free tax service Which worksheet to use. Free tax service   A worksheet you can use to figure your taxable benefits is in the instructions for your Form 1040 or Form 1040A. Free tax service You can use either that worksheet or Worksheet 1 in Publication 915, unless any of the following situations applies to you. Free tax service You contributed to a traditional individual retirement arrangement (IRA) and you or your spouse is covered by a retirement plan at work. Free tax service In this situation, you must use the special worksheets in Appendix B of Publication 590 to figure both your IRA deduction and your taxable benefits. Free tax service Situation (1) does not apply and you take an exclusion for interest from qualified U. Free tax service S. Free tax service savings bonds (Form 8815), for adoption benefits (Form 8839), for foreign earned income or housing (Form 2555 or Form 2555-EZ), or for income earned in American Samoa (Form 4563) or Puerto Rico by bona fide residents. Free tax service In this situation, you must use Worksheet 1 in Publication 915 to figure your taxable benefits. Free tax service You received a lump-sum payment for an earlier year. Free tax service In this situation, also complete Worksheet 2 or 3 and Worksheet 4 in Publication 915. Free tax service See Lump-sum election next. Free tax service Lump-sum election. Free tax service   You must include the taxable part of a lump-sum (retroactive) payment of benefits received in 2013 in your 2013 income, even if the payment includes benefits for an earlier year. Free tax service    This type of lump-sum benefit payment should not be confused with the lump-sum death benefit that both the SSA and RRB pay to many of their beneficiaries. Free tax service No part of the lump-sum death benefit is subject to tax. Free tax service   Generally, you use your 2013 income to figure the taxable part of the total benefits received in 2013. Free tax service However, you may be able to figure the taxable part of a lump-sum payment for an earlier year separately, using your income for the earlier year. Free tax service You can elect this method if it lowers your taxable benefits. Free tax service Making the election. Free tax service   If you received a lump-sum benefit payment in 2013 that includes benefits for one or more earlier years, follow the instructions in Publication 915 under Lump-Sum Election to see whether making the election will lower your taxable benefits. Free tax service That discussion also explains how to make the election. Free tax service    Because the earlier year's taxable benefits are included in your 2013 income, no adjustment is made to the earlier year's return. Free tax service Do not file an amended return for the earlier year. Free tax service Examples The following are a few examples you can use as a guide to figure the taxable part of your benefits. Free tax service Example 1. Free tax service George White is single and files Form 1040 for 2013. Free tax service He received the following income in 2013: Fully taxable pension $18,600 Wages from part-time job 9,400 Taxable interest income 990 Total $28,990 George also received social security benefits during 2013. Free tax service The Form SSA-1099 he received in January 2014 shows $5,980 in box 5. Free tax service To figure his taxable benefits, George completes the worksheet shown here. Free tax service Filled-in Worksheet 1. Free tax service Figuring Your Taxable Benefits 1. Free tax service Enter the total amount from box 5 of ALL your Forms SSA-1099 and RRB-1099. Free tax service Also enter this amount on Form 1040, line 20a, or Form 1040A, line 14a $5,980 2. Free tax service Enter one-half of line 1 2,990 3. Free tax service Combine the amounts from:     Form 1040: Lines 7, 8a, 9a, 10 through 14, 15b, 16b, 17 through 19, and 21. Free tax service     Form 1040A: Lines 7, 8a, 9a, 10, 11b, 12b, and 13 28,990 4. Free tax service Enter the amount, if any, from Form 1040 or 1040A, line 8b -0-       5. Free tax service Enter the total of any exclusions/adjustments for: Adoption benefits (Form 8839, line 28), Foreign earned income or housing (Form 2555, lines 45 and 50, or Form 2555-EZ, line 18), and Certain income of bona fide residents of American Samoa (Form 4563, line 15) or Puerto Rico -0-       6. Free tax service Combine lines 2, 3, 4, and 5 31,980 7. Free tax service Form 1040 filers: Enter the amount from Form 1040, lines 23 through 32, and any write-in adjustments you entered on the dotted line next to line 36. Free tax service     Form 1040A filers: Enter the amount from Form 1040A, lines 16 and 17 -0- 8. Free tax service Is the amount on line 7 less than the amount on line 6?     No. Free tax service None of your social security benefits are taxable. Free tax service Enter -0- on Form 1040, line 20b, or Form 1040A, line 14b. Free tax service   Yes. Free tax service Subtract line 7 from line 6 31,980 9. Free tax service If you are: Married filing jointly, enter $32,000 Single, head of household, qualifying widow(er), or married filing separately and you lived apart from your spouse for all of 2013, enter $25,000 25,000   Note. Free tax service If you are married filing separately and you lived with your spouse at any time in 2013, skip lines 9 through 16; multiply line 8 by 85% (. Free tax service 85) and enter the result on line 17. Free tax service Then go to line 18. Free tax service   10. Free tax service Is the amount on line 9 less than the amount on line 8?     No. Free tax service None of your benefits are taxable. Free tax service Enter -0- on Form 1040, line 20b, or on Form 1040A, line 14b. Free tax service If you are married filing separately and you lived apart from your spouse for all of 2013, be sure you entered “D” to the right of the word “benefits” on Form 1040, line 20a, or on Form 1040A, line 14a. Free tax service     Yes. Free tax service Subtract line 9 from line 8 6,980 11. Free tax service Enter $12,000 if married filing jointly; $9,000 if single, head of household, qualifying widow(er), or married filing separately and you lived apart from your spouse for all of 2013 9,000 12. Free tax service Subtract line 11 from line 10. Free tax service If zero or less, enter -0- -0- 13. Free tax service Enter the smaller of line 10 or line 11 6,980 14. Free tax service Enter one-half of line 13 3,490 15. Free tax service Enter the smaller of line 2 or line 14 2,990 16. Free tax service Multiply line 12 by 85% (. Free tax service 85). Free tax service If line 12 is zero, enter -0- -0- 17. Free tax service Add lines 15 and 16 2,990 18. Free tax service Multiply line 1 by 85% (. Free tax service 85) 5,083 19. Free tax service Taxable benefits. Free tax service Enter the smaller of line 17 or line 18. Free tax service Also enter this amount on Form 1040, line 20b, or Form 1040A, line 14b $2,990 The amount on line 19 of George's worksheet shows that $2,990 of his social security benefits is taxable. Free tax service On line 20a of his Form 1040, George enters his net benefits of $5,980. Free tax service On line 20b, he enters his taxable benefits of $2,990. Free tax service Example 2. Free tax service Ray and Alice Hopkins file a joint return on Form 1040A for 2013. Free tax service Ray is retired and received a fully taxable pension of $15,500. Free tax service He also received social security benefits, and his Form SSA-1099 for 2013 shows net benefits of $5,600 in box 5. Free tax service Alice worked during the year and had wages of $14,000. Free tax service She made a deductible payment to her IRA account of $1,000. Free tax service Ray and Alice have two savings accounts with a total of $250 in taxable interest income. Free tax service They complete Worksheet 1, entering $29,750 ($15,500 + $14,000 + $250) on line 3. Free tax service They find none of Ray's social security benefits are taxable. Free tax service On Form 1040A, they enter $5,600 on line 14a and -0- on line 14b. Free tax service Filled-in Worksheet 1. Free tax service Figuring Your Taxable Benefits 1. Free tax service Enter the total amount from box 5 of ALL your Forms SSA-1099 and RRB-1099. Free tax service Also enter this amount on Form 1040, line 20a, or Form 1040A, line 14a $5,600 2. Free tax service Enter one-half of line 1 2,800 3. Free tax service Combine the amounts from:     Form 1040: Lines 7, 8a, 9a, 10 through 14, 15b, 16b, 17 through 19, and 21. Free tax service     Form 1040A: Lines 7, 8a, 9a, 10, 11b, 12b, and 13 29,750 4. Free tax service Enter the amount, if any, from Form 1040 or 1040A, line 8b -0-       5. Free tax service Enter the total of any exclusions/adjustments for: Adoption benefits (Form 8839, line 28), Foreign earned income or housing (Form 2555, lines 45 and 50, or Form 2555-EZ, line 18), and Certain income of bona fide residents of American Samoa (Form 4563, line 15) or Puerto Rico -0-       6. Free tax service Combine lines 2, 3, 4, and 5 32,550 7. Free tax service Form 1040 filers: Enter the amount from Form 1040, lines 23 through 32, and any write-in adjustments you entered on the dotted line next to line 36. Free tax service     Form 1040A filers: Enter the amount from Form 1040A, lines 16 and 17 1,000 8. Free tax service Is the amount on line 7 less than the amount on line 6?     No. Free tax service None of your social security benefits are taxable. Free tax service Enter -0- on Form 1040, line 20b, or Form 1040A, line 14b. Free tax service   Yes. Free tax service Subtract line 7 from line 6 31,550 9. Free tax service If you are: Married filing jointly, enter $32,000 Single, head of household, qualifying widow(er), or married filing separately and you lived apart from your spouse for all of 2013, enter $25,000 32,000   Note. Free tax service If you are married filing separately and you lived with your spouse at any time in 2013, skip lines 9 through 16; multiply line 8 by 85% (. Free tax service 85) and enter the result on line 17. Free tax service Then go to line 18. Free tax service   10. Free tax service Is the amount on line 9 less than the amount on line 8?     No. Free tax service None of your benefits are taxable. Free tax service Enter -0- on Form 1040, line 20b, or on Form 1040A, line 14b. Free tax service If you are married filing separately and you lived apart from your spouse for all of 2013, be sure you entered “D” to the right of the word “benefits” on Form 1040, line 20a, or on Form 1040A, line 14a. Free tax service     Yes. Free tax service Subtract line 9 from line 8   11. Free tax service Enter $12,000 if married filing jointly; $9,000 if single, head of household, qualifying widow(er), or married filing separately and you lived apart from your spouse for all of 2013   12. Free tax service Subtract line 11 from line 10. Free tax service If zero or less, enter -0-   13. Free tax service Enter the smaller of line 10 or line 11   14. Free tax service Enter one-half of line 13   15. Free tax service Enter the smaller of line 2 or line 14   16. Free tax service Multiply line 12 by 85% (. Free tax service 85). Free tax service If line 12 is zero, enter -0-   17. Free tax service Add lines 15 and 16   18. Free tax service Multiply line 1 by 85% (. Free tax service 85)   19. Free tax service Taxable benefits. Free tax service Enter the smaller of line 17 or line 18. Free tax service Also enter this amount on Form 1040, line 20b, or Form 1040A, line 14b   Example 3. Free tax service Joe and Betty Johnson file a joint return on Form 1040 for 2013. Free tax service Joe is a retired railroad worker and in 2013 received the social security equivalent benefit (SSEB) portion of tier 1 railroad retirement benefits. Free tax service Joe's Form RRB-1099 shows $10,000 in box 5. Free tax service Betty is a retired government worker and receives a fully taxable pension of $38,000. Free tax service They had $2,300 in taxable interest income plus interest of $200 on a qualified U. Free tax service S. Free tax service savings bond. Free tax service The savings bond interest qualified for the exclusion. Free tax service They figure their taxable benefits by completing Worksheet 1. Free tax service Because they have qualified U. Free tax service S. Free tax service savings bond interest, they follow the note at the beginning of the worksheet and use the amount from line 2 of their Schedule B (Form 1040A or 1040) on line 3 of the worksheet instead of the amount from line 8a of their Form 1040. Free tax service On line 3 of the worksheet, they enter $40,500 ($38,000 + $2,500). Free tax service Filled-in Worksheet 1. Free tax service Figuring Your Taxable Benefits Before you begin: • If you are married filing separately and you lived apart from your spouse for all of 2013, enter “D” to the right of the word “benefits” on Form 1040, line 20a, or Form 1040A, line 14a. Free tax service • Do not use this worksheet if you repaid benefits in 2013 and your total repayments (box 4 of Forms SSA-1099 and RRB-1099) were more than your gross benefits for 2013 (box 3 of Forms SSA-1099 and RRB-1099). Free tax service None of your benefits are taxable for 2013. Free tax service For more information, see Repayments More Than Gross Benefits. Free tax service • If you are filing Form 8815, Exclusion of Interest From Series EE and I U. Free tax service S. Free tax service Savings Bonds Issued After 1989, do not include the amount from line 8a of Form 1040 or Form 1040A on line 3 of this worksheet. Free tax service Instead, include the amount from Schedule B (Form 1040A or 1040), line 2. Free tax service 1. Free tax service Enter the total amount from box 5 of ALL your Forms SSA-1099 and RRB-1099. Free tax service Also enter this amount on Form 1040, line 20a, or Form 1040A, line 14a $10,000 2. Free tax service Enter one-half of line 1 5,000 3. Free tax service Combine the amounts from:     Form 1040: Lines 7, 8a, 9a, 10 through 14, 15b, 16b, 17 through 19, and 21. Free tax service     Form 1040A: Lines 7, 8a, 9a, 10, 11b, 12b, and 13 40,500 4. Free tax service Enter the amount, if any, from Form 1040 or 1040A, line 8b -0-       5. Free tax service Enter the total of any exclusions/adjustments for: Adoption benefits (Form 8839, line 28), Foreign earned income or housing (Form 2555, lines 45 and 50, or Form 2555-EZ, line 18), and Certain income of bona fide residents of American Samoa (Form 4563, line 15) or Puerto Rico -0-       6. Free tax service Combine lines 2, 3, 4, and 5 45,500 7. Free tax service Form 1040 filers: Enter the amount from Form 1040, lines 23 through 32, and any write-in adjustments you entered on the dotted line next to line 36. Free tax service     Form 1040A filers: Enter the amount from Form 1040A, lines 16 and 17 -0- 8. Free tax service Is the amount on line 7 less than the amount on line 6?     No. Free tax service None of your social security benefits are taxable. Free tax service Enter -0- on Form 1040, line 20b, or Form 1040A, line 14b. Free tax service   Yes. Free tax service Subtract line 7 from line 6 45,500 9. Free tax service If you are: Married filing jointly, enter $32,000 Single, head of household, qualifying widow(er), or married filing separately and you lived apart from your spouse for all of 2013, enter $25,000 32,000   Note. Free tax service If you are married filing separately and you lived with your spouse at any time in 2013, skip lines 9 through 16; multiply line 8 by 85% (. Free tax service 85) and enter the result on line 17. Free tax service Then go to line 18. Free tax service   10. Free tax service Is the amount on line 9 less than the amount on line 8?     No. Free tax service None of your benefits are taxable. Free tax service Enter -0- on Form 1040, line 20b, or on Form 1040A, line 14b. Free tax service If you are married filing separately and you lived apart from your spouse for all of 2013, be sure you entered “D” to the right of the word “benefits” on Form 1040, line 20a, or on Form 1040A, line 14a. Free tax service     Yes. Free tax service Subtract line 9 from line 8 13,500 11. Free tax service Enter $12,000 if married filing jointly; $9,000 if single, head of household, qualifying widow(er), or married filing separately and you lived apart from your spouse for all of 2013 12,000 12. Free tax service Subtract line 11 from line 10. Free tax service If zero or less, enter -0- 1,500 13. Free tax service Enter the smaller of line 10 or line 11 12,000 14. Free tax service Enter one-half of line 13 6,000 15. Free tax service Enter the smaller of line 2 or line 14 5,000 16. Free tax service Multiply line 12 by 85% (. Free tax service 85). Free tax service If line 12 is zero, enter -0- 1,275 17. Free tax service Add lines 15 and 16 6,275 18. Free tax service Multiply line 1 by 85% (. Free tax service 85) 8,500 19. Free tax service Taxable benefits. Free tax service Enter the smaller of line 17 or line 18. Free tax service Also enter this amount on Form 1040, line 20b, or Form 1040A, line 14b $6,275 More than 50% of Joe's net benefits are taxable because the income on line 8 of the worksheet ($45,500) is more than $44,000. Free tax service Joe and Betty enter $10,000 on Form 1040, line 20a, and $6,275 on Form 1040, line 20b. Free tax service Deductions Related to Your Benefits You may be entitled to deduct certain amounts related to the benefits you receive. Free tax service Disability payments. Free tax service   You may have received disability payments from your employer or an insurance company that you included as income on your tax return in an earlier year. Free tax service If you received a lump-sum payment from SSA or RRB, and you had to repay the employer or insurance company for the disability payments, you can take an itemized deduction for the part of the payments you included in gross income in the earlier year. Free tax service If the amount you repay is more than $3,000, you may be able to claim a tax credit instead. Free tax service Claim the deduction or credit in the same way explained under Repayments More Than Gross Benefits , later. Free tax service Legal expenses. Free tax service   You can usually deduct legal expenses that you pay or incur to produce or collect taxable income or in connection with the determination, collection, or refund of any tax. Free tax service   Legal expenses for collecting the taxable part of your benefits are deductible as a miscellaneous itemized deduction on Schedule A (Form 1040), line 23. Free tax service Repayments More Than Gross Benefits In some situations, your Form SSA-1099 or Form RRB-1099 will show that the total benefits you repaid (box 4) are more than the gross benefits (box 3) you received. Free tax service If this occurred, your net benefits in box 5 will be a negative figure (a figure in parentheses) and none of your benefits will be taxable. Free tax service Do not use a worksheet in this case. Free tax service If you receive more than one form, a negative figure in box 5 of one form is used to offset a positive figure in box 5 of another form for that same year. Free tax service If you have any questions about this negative figure, contact your local SSA office or your local RRB field office. Free tax service Joint return. Free tax service   If you and your spouse file a joint return, and your Form SSA-1099 or RRB-1099 has a negative figure in box 5, but your spouse's does not, subtract the amount in box 5 of your form from the amount in box 5 of your spouse's form. Free tax service You do this to get your net benefits when figuring if your combined benefits are taxable. Free tax service Example. Free tax service John and Mary file a joint return for 2013. Free tax service John received Form SSA-1099 showing $3,000 in box 5. Free tax service Mary also received Form SSA-1099 and the amount in box 5 was ($500). Free tax service John and Mary will use $2,500 ($3,000 minus $500) as the amount of their net benefits when figuring if any of their combined benefits are taxable. Free tax service Repayment of benefits received in an earlier year. Free tax service   If the total amount shown in box 5 of all of your Forms SSA-1099 and RRB-1099 is a negative figure, you can take an itemized deduction for the part of this negative figure that represents benefits you included in gross income in an earlier year. Free tax service Deduction $3,000 or less. Free tax service   If this deduction is $3,000 or less, it is subject to the 2%-of-adjusted-gross-income limit that applies to certain miscellaneous itemized deductions. Free tax service Claim it on Schedule A (Form 1040), line 23. Free tax service Deduction more than $3,000. Free tax service    If this deduction is more than $3,000, you should figure your tax two ways: Figure your tax for 2013 with the itemized deduction included on Schedule A, line 28. Free tax service Figure your tax for 2013 in the following steps. Free tax service Figure the tax without the itemized deduction included on Schedule A, line 28. Free tax service For each year after 1983 for which part of the negative figure represents a repayment of benefits, refigure your taxable benefits as if your total benefits for the year were reduced by that part of the negative figure. Free tax service Then refigure the tax for that year. Free tax service Subtract the total of the refigured tax amounts in (b) from the total of your actual tax amounts. Free tax service Subtract the result in (c) from the result in (a). Free tax service Compare the tax figured in methods (1) and (2). Free tax service Your tax for 2013 is the smaller of the two amounts. Free tax service If method (1) results in less tax, take the itemized deduction on Schedule A (Form 1040), line 28. Free tax service If method (2) results in less tax, claim a credit for the amount from step 2(c) above on Form 1040, line 71. Free tax service Check box d and enter “I. Free tax service R. Free tax service C. Free tax service 1341” in the space next to that box. Free tax service If both methods produce the same tax, deduct the repayment on Schedule A (Form 1040), line 28. Free tax service Prev  Up  Next   Home   More Online Publications
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Mobile App Gallery API Documentation

About the API

The USA.gov Mobile Apps Gallery and GobiernoUSA.gov Aplicaciones (apps) móviles feature mobile apps and websites from government agencies on a variety of platforms in English and Spanish.

The Mobile App Gallery API can be used to retrieve information about all of the apps in the galleries.

If you are using the Mobile App Gallery API and have feedback or want to tell us about your product, please e-mail us.

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Accessing the API

Our Mobile App Gallery 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://apps.usa.gov/apps-gallery/api/. Append the API call you'd like to make to this URL.

There are 4 URLs available to query against.

Query Examples

Error Handling

  • HTTP Code 500 = internal server error
  • HTTP Code 200 = results found
  • HTTP Code 404 = query error

JSONP

API Data Model

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

  • Id - Unique Sytem Id of the app.
  • Name – The name of the app.
  • Organization – The agency or organization for the app.
  • Friendly_URL – The URL to the app on the USA.gov or GobiernoUSA.gov App Gallery.
  • Short_Description – A short description of the app.
  • Long_Description – A long description of the app. Please note that the long description may include HTML coding.
  • Language – Whether the app is in English or Spanish.
  • Icon – The path to the icon for the app.
  • Agency - Agency associated with the app as an array.
  • Version_Details - List of version avaiable for the app as an array.

Additionally, each Version Detail secion includes following sub-data elements.

  • Version_Number - This version's number,
  • Published - The date this version of the app was published.
  • Description - Description of this version, should be similar to the registration's long description,
  • Store_Url -The URL to download or access the app.
  • Whats_New - Description of changes or features distinct to this version.
  • Platform - Operating System this version is available for.
  • Device - List of device types this version is available for as an array.
  • Rating - Average rating of this version.
  • Rating_Count - Number of ratings given.
  • Screenshot - List of url paths to screenshots of the app as an array.
  • Video - List of url paths to videos of the app as an array.
  • Language - Whether this version is in English or Spanish.

Results

All results are in json format.

No Results

{
        "metadata": {
            "uri":    "http://apps.usa.gov/apps-gallery/api/registrations.json?Name=NotFound",
            "count":  0,
            "offset": null
        },
        "results": []
    }

Good Results

{
        "metadata": {
            "uri":    "http://apps.usa.gov/apps-gallery/api/registrations.json?limit=3",
            "count":  3,
            "limit":  3,
            "offset": 1
        },
        "results": [ {},{},{} ]
    }

JSONP Results

fname({
        "metadata": {
            "uri":    "http://apps.usa.gov/apps-gallery/api/registrations.json?limit=3&_callback=fname",
            "count":  3,
            "limit":  3,
            "offset": 1
        },
        "results": [ {},{},{} ]
    });

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Terms of Service

By using this data, you agree to the Terms of Service.

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The Free Tax Service

Free tax service Publication 504 - Main Content Table of Contents Filing StatusUnmarried persons. Free tax service Married persons. Free tax service Same-sex marriage. Free tax service Exception. Free tax service Married Filing Jointly Married Filing Separately Head of Household ExemptionsPersonal Exemptions Exemptions for Dependents Phaseout of Exemptions AlimonyInvalid decree. Free tax service Amended instrument. Free tax service General Rules Instruments Executed After 1984 Instruments Executed Before 1985 Qualified Domestic Relations OrderRollovers. Free tax service Individual Retirement Arrangements Property SettlementsTransfer Between Spouses Gift Tax on Property Settlements Sale of Jointly-Owned Property Costs of Getting a Divorce Tax Withholding and Estimated Tax Community PropertyCommunity Income Alimony (Community Income) How To Get Tax Help Filing Status Your filing status is used in determining whether you must file a return, your standard deduction, and the correct tax. Free tax service It may also be used in determining whether you can claim certain other deductions and credits. Free tax service The filing status you can choose depends partly on your marital status on the last day of your tax year. Free tax service Marital status. Free tax service   If you are unmarried, your filing status is single or, if you meet certain requirements, head of household or qualifying widow(er). Free tax service If you are married, your filing status is either married filing a joint return or married filing a separate return. Free tax service For information about the single and qualifying widow(er) filing statuses, see Publication 501. Free tax service Unmarried persons. Free tax service   You are unmarried for the whole year if either of the following applies. Free tax service You have obtained a final decree of divorce or separate maintenance by the last day of your tax year. Free tax service You must follow your state law to determine if you are divorced or legally separated. Free tax service Exception. Free tax service If you and your spouse obtain a divorce in one year for the sole purpose of filing tax returns as unmarried individuals, and at the time of divorce you intend to remarry each other and do so in the next tax year, you and your spouse must file as married individuals. Free tax service You have obtained a decree of annulment, which holds that no valid marriage ever existed. Free tax service You must file amended returns (Form 1040X, Amended U. Free tax service S. Free tax service Individual Income Tax Return) for all tax years affected by the annulment that are not closed by the statute of limitations. Free tax service The statute of limitations generally does not end until 3 years (including extensions) after the date you file your original return or within 2 years after the date you pay the tax. Free tax service On the amended return you will change your filing status to single or, if you meet certain requirements, head of household. Free tax service Married persons. Free tax service   You are married for the whole year if you are separated but you have not obtained a final decree of divorce or separate maintenance by the last day of your tax year. Free tax service An interlocutory decree is not a final decree. Free tax service Same-sex marriage. Free tax service   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. Free tax service 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. Free tax service 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. Free tax service For more details, see Publication 501. Free tax service Exception. Free tax service   If you live apart from your spouse, under certain circumstances, you may be considered unmarried and can file as head of household. Free tax service See Head of Household , later. Free tax service Married Filing Jointly If you are married, you and your spouse can choose to file a joint return. Free tax service If you file jointly, you both must include all your income, exemptions, deductions, and credits on that return. Free tax service You can file a joint return even if one of you had no income or deductions. Free tax service If both you and your spouse have income, you should usually figure your tax on both a joint return and separate returns (using the filing status of married filing separately) to see which gives the two of you the lower combined tax. Free tax service Nonresident alien. Free tax service   To file a joint return, at least one of you must be a U. Free tax service S. Free tax service citizen or resident alien at the end of the tax year. Free tax service If either of you was a nonresident alien at any time during the tax year, you can file a joint return only if you agree to treat the nonresident spouse as a resident of the United States. Free tax service This means that your combined worldwide incomes are subject to U. Free tax service S. Free tax service income tax. Free tax service These rules are explained in Publication 519, U. Free tax service S. Free tax service Tax Guide for Aliens. Free tax service Signing a joint return. Free tax service   Both you and your spouse generally must sign the return, or it will not be considered a joint return. Free tax service Joint and individual liability. Free tax service   Both you and your spouse may be held responsible, jointly and individually, for the tax and any interest or penalty due on your joint return. Free tax service This means that one spouse may be held liable for all the tax due even if all the income was earned by the other spouse. Free tax service Divorced taxpayers. Free tax service   If you are divorced, you are jointly and individually responsible for any tax, interest, and penalties due on a joint return for a tax year ending before your divorce. Free tax service This responsibility applies even if your divorce decree states that your former spouse will be responsible for any amounts due on previously filed joint returns. Free tax service Relief from joint liability. Free tax service   In some cases, a spouse may be relieved of the tax, interest, and penalties on a joint return. Free tax service You can ask for relief no matter how small the liability. Free tax service   There are three types of relief available. Free tax service Innocent spouse relief. Free tax service Separation of liability, which applies to joint filers who are divorced, widowed, legally separated, or who have not lived together for the 12 months ending on the date election of this relief is filed. Free tax service Equitable relief. Free tax service   Married persons who live in community property states, but who did not file joint returns, may also qualify for relief from liability arising from community property law or for equitable relief. Free tax service See Relief from liability arising from community property law , later, under Community Property. Free tax service    Each kind of relief has different requirements. Free tax service You must file Form 8857 to request relief under any of these categories. Free tax service Publication 971 explains these kinds of relief and who may qualify for them. Free tax service You can also find information on our website at IRS. Free tax service gov. Free tax service Tax refund applied to spouse's debts. Free tax service   The overpayment shown on your joint return may be used to pay the past-due amount of your spouse's debts. Free tax service This includes your spouse's federal tax, state income tax, child or spousal support payments, or a federal nontax debt, such as a student loan. Free tax service You can get a refund of your share of the overpayment if you qualify as an injured spouse. Free tax service Injured spouse. Free tax service   You are an injured spouse if you file a joint return and all or part of your share of the overpayment was, or is expected to be, applied against your spouse's past-due debts. Free tax service An injured spouse can get a refund for his or her share of the overpayment that would otherwise be used to pay the past-due amount. Free tax service   To be considered an injured spouse, you must: Have made and reported tax payments (such as federal income tax withheld from wages or estimated tax payments), or claimed a refundable tax credit, such as the earned income credit or additional child tax credit on the joint return, and Not be legally obligated to pay the past-due amount. Free tax service Note. Free tax service If the injured spouse's permanent home is in a community property state, then the injured spouse must only meet (2). Free tax service For more information, see Publication 555. Free tax service    Refunds that involve community property states must be divided according to local law. Free tax service If you live in a community property state in which all community property is subject to the debts of either spouse, your entire refund is generally used to pay those debts. Free tax service   If you are an injured spouse, you must file Form 8379 to have your portion of the overpayment refunded to you. Free tax service Follow the instructions for the form. Free tax service   If you have not filed your joint return and you know that your joint refund will be offset, file Form 8379 with your return. Free tax service You should receive your refund within 14 weeks from the date the paper return is filed or within 11 weeks from the date the return is filed electronically. Free tax service   If you filed your joint return and your joint refund was offset, file Form 8379 by itself. Free tax service When filed after offset, it can take up to 8 weeks to receive your refund. Free tax service Do not attach the previously filed tax return, but do include copies of all Forms W-2, Wage and Tax Statement, and W-2G, Certain Gambling Winnings, for both spouses and any Forms 1099 that show income tax withheld. Free tax service    An injured spouse claim is different from an innocent spouse relief request. Free tax service An injured spouse uses Form 8379 to request an allocation of the tax overpayment attributed to each spouse. Free tax service An innocent spouse uses Form 8857 to request relief from joint liability for tax, interest, and penalties on a joint return for items of the other spouse (or former spouse) that were incorrectly reported on or omitted from the joint return. Free tax service For information on innocent spouses, see Relief from joint liability, earlier. Free tax service Married Filing Separately If you and your spouse file separate returns, you should each report only your own income, exemptions, deductions, and credits on your individual return. Free tax service You can file a separate return even if only one of you had income. Free tax service For information on exemptions you can claim on your separate return, see Exemptions , later. Free tax service Community or separate income. Free tax service   If you live in a community property state and file a separate return, your income may be separate income or community income for income tax purposes. Free tax service For more information, see Community Income under Community Property, later. Free tax service Separate liability. Free tax service   If you and your spouse file separately, you each are responsible only for the tax due on your own return. Free tax service Itemized deductions. Free tax service   If you and your spouse file separate returns and one of you itemizes deductions, the other spouse cannot use the standard deduction and should also itemize deductions. Free tax service Table 1. Free tax service Itemized Deductions on Separate Returns This table shows itemized deductions you can claim on your married filing separate return whether you paid the expenses separately with your own funds or jointly with your spouse. Free tax service  Caution: If you live in a community property state, these rules do not apply. Free tax service See Community Property. Free tax service IF you paid . Free tax service . Free tax service . Free tax service AND you . Free tax service . Free tax service . Free tax service THEN you can deduct on your separate federal return. Free tax service . Free tax service . Free tax service   medical expenses   paid with funds deposited in a joint checking account in which you and your spouse have an equal interest     half of the total medical expenses, subject to certain limits, unless you can show that you alone paid the expenses. Free tax service     state income tax   file a separate state income tax return     the state income tax you alone paid during the year. Free tax service         file a joint state income tax return and you and your spouse are jointly and individually liable for the full amount of the state income tax     the state income tax you alone paid during the year. Free tax service         file a joint state income tax return and you  are liable for only your own share of state  income tax     the smaller of: the state income tax you alone paid during the year, or the total state income tax you and your spouse paid during the year multiplied by the following fraction. Free tax service The numerator is your gross income and the denominator  is your combined gross income. Free tax service     property tax   paid the tax on property held as tenants by the entirety     the property tax you alone paid. Free tax service     mortgage interest   paid the interest on a qualified home1 held  as tenants by the entirety     the mortgage interest you alone paid. Free tax service     casualty loss   have a casualty loss on a home you own  as tenants by the entirety     half of the loss, subject to the deduction limits. Free tax service Neither spouse may report the total casualty loss. Free tax service 1 For more information on a qualified home and deductible mortgage interest, see Publication 936, Home Mortgage Interest Deduction. Free tax service Dividing itemized deductions. Free tax service   You may be able to claim itemized deductions on a separate return for certain expenses that you paid separately or jointly with your spouse. Free tax service See Table 1, later. Free tax service Separate returns may give you a higher tax. Free tax service   Some married couples file separate returns because each wants to be responsible only for his or her own tax. Free tax service There is no joint liability. Free tax service But in almost all instances, if you file separate returns, you will pay more combined federal tax than you would with a joint return. Free tax service This is because the following special rules apply if you file a separate return. Free tax service Your tax rate generally will be higher than it would be on a joint return. Free tax service Your exemption amount for figuring the alternative minimum tax will be half of that allowed a joint return filer. Free tax service You cannot take the credit for child and dependent care expenses in most cases. Free tax service You cannot take the earned income credit. Free tax service You cannot take the exclusion or credit for adoption expenses in most cases. Free tax service You cannot take the credit for higher education expenses (American opportunity and lifetime learning credits), the deduction for student loan interest, or the tuition and fees deduction. Free tax service You cannot exclude the interest from qualified savings bonds that you used for higher education expenses. Free tax service 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 will have to include in income more (up to 85%) of any social security or equivalent railroad retirement benefits you received. Free tax service Your income limits that reduce the child tax credit, the retirement savings contributions credit, itemized deductions, and the deduction for personal exemptions are half of the limits for a joint return filer. Free tax service Your capital loss deduction limit is $1,500 (instead of $3,000 on a joint return). Free tax service Your basic standard deduction, if allowable, is half of that allowed a joint return filer. Free tax service See Itemized deductions , earlier. Free tax service Joint return after separate returns. Free tax service   If either you or your spouse (or both of you) file a separate return, you generally can change to a joint return within 3 years from the due date (not including extensions) of the separate return or returns. Free tax service This applies to a return either of you filed claiming married filing separately, single, or head of household filing status. Free tax service Use Form 1040X to change your filing status. Free tax service Separate returns after joint return. Free tax service   After the due date of your return, you and your spouse cannot file separate returns if you previously filed a joint return. Free tax service Exception. Free tax service   A personal representative for a decedent can change from a joint return elected by the surviving spouse to a separate return for the decedent. Free tax service The personal representative has 1 year from the due date (including extensions) of the joint return to make the change. Free tax service Head of Household Filing as head of household has the following advantages. Free tax service You can claim the standard deduction even if your spouse files a separate return and itemizes deductions. Free tax service Your standard deduction is higher than is allowed if you claim a filing status of single or married filing separately. Free tax service Your tax rate usually will be lower than it is if you claim a filing status of single or married filing separately. Free tax service You may be able to claim certain credits (such as the dependent care credit and the earned income credit) you cannot claim if your filing status is married filing separately. Free tax service Income limits that reduce your child tax credit, retirement savings contributions credit, itemized deductions, and the deduction for personal exemptions are higher than the income limits if you claim a filing status of married filing separately. Free tax service Requirements. Free tax service   You may be able to file as head of household if you meet all the following requirements. Free tax service You are unmarried or “considered unmarried” on the last day of the year. Free tax service You paid more than half the cost of keeping up a home for the year. Free tax service A “qualifying person” lived with you in the home for more than half the year (except for temporary absences, such as school). Free tax service However, if the “qualifying person” is your dependent parent, he or she does not have to live with you. Free tax service See Special rule for parent , later, under Qualifying person. Free tax service Considered unmarried. Free tax service   You are considered unmarried on the last day of the tax year if you meet all the following tests. Free tax service You file a separate return. Free tax service A separate return includes a return claiming married filing separately, single, or head of household filing status. Free tax service You paid more than half the cost of keeping up your home for the tax year. Free tax service Your spouse did not live in your home during the last 6 months of the tax year. Free tax service Your spouse is considered to live in your home even if he or she is temporarily absent due to special circumstances. Free tax service See Temporary absences , later. Free tax service Your home was the main home of your child, stepchild, or foster child for more than half the year. Free tax service (See Qualifying person , later, for rules applying to a child's birth, death, or temporary absence during the year. Free tax service ) You must be able to claim an exemption for the child. Free tax service However, you meet this test if you cannot claim the exemption only because the noncustodial parent can claim the child using the rule described later in Special rule for divorced or separated parents (or parents who live apart) under Exemptions for Dependents. Free tax service The general rules for claiming an exemption for a dependent are shown later in Table 3. Free tax service    If you were considered married for part of the year and lived in a community property state (one of the states listed later under Community Property), special rules may apply in determining your income and expenses. Free tax service See Publication 555 for more information. Free tax service Nonresident alien spouse. Free tax service   If your spouse was a nonresident alien at any time during the tax year, and you have not chosen to treat your spouse as a resident alien, you are considered unmarried for head of household purposes. Free tax service However, your spouse is not a qualifying person for head of household purposes. Free tax service You must have another qualifying person and meet the other requirements to file as head of household. Free tax service Keeping up a home. Free tax service   You are keeping up a home only if you pay more than half the cost of its upkeep for the year. Free tax service This includes rent, mortgage interest, real estate taxes, insurance on the home, repairs, utilities, and food eaten in the home. Free tax service This does not include the cost of clothing, education, medical treatment, vacations, life insurance, or transportation for any member of the household. Free tax service Qualifying person. Free tax service    Table 2, later, shows who can be a qualifying person. Free tax service Any person not described in Table 2 is not a qualifying person. Free tax service   Generally, the qualifying person must live with you for more than half of the year. Free tax service Table 2. Free tax service Who Is a Qualifying Person Qualifying You To File as Head of Household?1 Caution. Free tax service See the text of this publication for the other requirements you must meet to claim head of household filing status. Free tax service IF the person is your . Free tax service . Free tax service . Free tax service AND . Free tax service . Free tax service . Free tax service THEN that person is . Free tax service . Free tax service . Free tax service   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. Free tax service     he or she is married and you can claim an exemption for him or her a qualifying person. Free tax service     he or she is married and you cannot claim an exemption for him or her not a qualifying person. Free tax service 3     qualifying relative4 who is your father or mother you can claim an exemption for him or her5 a qualifying person. Free tax service 6     you cannot claim an exemption for him or her not a qualifying person. Free tax service     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 Publication 501 and you can claim an exemption for him or her5 a qualifying person. Free tax service     he or she did not live with you more than half the year not a qualifying person. Free tax service     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 Publication 501 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. Free tax service     you cannot claim an exemption for him or her not a qualifying person. Free tax service   1 A person cannot qualify more than one taxpayer to use the head of household filing status for the year. Free tax service 2 See Table 3, later, for the tests that must be met to be a qualifying child. Free tax service Note. Free tax service 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 Exemptions for Dependents, later. Free tax service If you are the custodial parent and those rules apply, the child is generally 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. Free tax service 3 This 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. Free tax service 4 See Table 3, later, for the tests that must be met to be a qualifying relative. Free tax service 5 If you can claim an exemption for a person only because of a multiple support agreement, that person is not a qualifying person. Free tax service See Multiple Support Agreement in Publication 501. Free tax service 6 See Special rule for parent . Free tax service Special rule for parent. Free tax service   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. Free tax service However, you must be able to claim an exemption for your father or mother. Free tax service 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. Free tax service 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. Free tax service Death or birth. Free tax service   If the person for whom you kept up a home was born or died in 2013, you still may be able to file as head of household. Free tax service If the person 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. Free tax service If the person is anyone else, see Publication 501. Free tax service Temporary absences. Free tax service   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. Free tax service It must be reasonable to assume that the absent person will return to the home after the temporary absence. Free tax service You must continue to keep up the home during the absence. Free tax service Kidnapped child. Free tax service   You may be eligible to file as head of household even if the child who is your qualifying person has been kidnapped. Free tax service You can claim head of household filing status if all the following statements are true. Free tax service The child must be presumed by law enforcement authorities to have been kidnapped by someone who is not a member of your family or the child's family. Free tax service In the year of the kidnapping, the child lived with you for more than half the part of the year before the kidnapping. Free tax service You would have qualified for head of household filing status if the child had not been kidnapped. Free tax service   This treatment applies for all years until the earlier of: The year the child is returned, The year there is a determination that the child is dead, or The year the child would have reached age 18. Free tax service More information. Free tax service   For more information on filing as head of household, see Publication 501. Free tax service Exemptions You can deduct $3,900 for each exemption you claim in 2013. Free tax service However, if your adjusted gross income is more than $150,000, see Phaseout of Exemptions , later. Free tax service There are two types of exemptions: personal exemptions and exemptions for dependents. Free tax service If you are entitled to claim an exemption for a dependent (such as your child), that dependent cannot claim his or her personal exemption on his or her own tax return. Free tax service Personal Exemptions You can claim your own exemption unless someone else can claim it. Free tax service If you are married, you may be able to take an exemption for your spouse. Free tax service These are called personal exemptions. Free tax service Exemption for Your Spouse Your spouse is never considered your dependent. Free tax service Joint return. Free tax service   On a joint return, you can claim one exemption for yourself and one for your spouse. Free tax service   If your spouse had any gross income, you can claim his or her exemption only if you file a joint return. Free tax service Separate return. Free tax service   If you file a separate return, you can take 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 taxpayer. Free tax service If your spouse is the dependent of another taxpayer, you cannot claim an exemption for your spouse even if the other taxpayer does not actually claim your spouse's exemption. Free tax service Alimony paid. Free tax service   If you paid alimony to your spouse, you cannot take an exemption for your spouse. Free tax service This is because alimony is gross income to the spouse who received it. Free tax service Divorced or separated spouse. Free tax service   If you obtained a final decree of divorce or separate maintenance during the year, you cannot take your former spouse's exemption. Free tax service This rule applies even if you provided all of your former spouse's support. Free tax service Exemptions for Dependents You are allowed one exemption for each person you can claim as a dependent. Free tax service You can claim an exemption for a dependent even if your dependent files a return. Free tax service The term “dependent” means: A qualifying child, or A qualifying relative. Free tax service Table 3 shows the tests that must be met to be either a qualifying child or qualifying relative, plus the additional requirements for claiming an exemption for a dependent. Free tax service For detailed information, see Publication 501. Free tax service   Dependent not allowed a personal exemption. Free tax service If you can claim an exemption for your dependent, the dependent cannot claim his or her own exemption on his or her own tax return. Free tax service This is true even if you do not claim the dependent's exemption on your return. Free tax service It is also true if the decedent's exemption on your return is reduced or eliminated under the phaseout rule described under Phaseout of Exemptions, later. Free tax service Table 3. Free tax service Overview of the Rules for Claiming an Exemption for a Dependent Caution. Free tax service This table is only an overview of the rules. Free tax service For details, see Publication 501. Free tax service • You cannot claim any dependents if you, or your spouse if filing jointly, could be claimed as a dependent by another taxpayer. Free tax service • You cannot claim a married person who files a joint return as a dependent unless that joint return is only a claim for refund and there would be no tax liability for either spouse on separate returns. Free tax service • You cannot claim a person as a dependent unless that person is a U. Free tax service S. Free tax service citizen, U. Free tax service S. Free tax service resident alien, U. Free tax service S. Free tax service national, or a resident of Canada or Mexico. Free tax service 1 • You cannot claim a person as a dependent unless that person is your qualifying child or qualifying relative. Free tax service   Tests To Be a Qualifying Child   Tests To Be a Qualifying Relative 1. Free tax service     2. Free tax service       3. Free tax service    4. Free tax service    5. Free tax service    The child must be your son, daughter, stepchild, foster child, brother, sister, half brother, half sister, stepbrother, stepsister, or a descendant of any of them. Free tax service   The child must be (a) under age 19 at the end of the year and younger than you (or your spouse if filing jointly), (b) under age 24 at the end of the year, a student, and younger than you (or your spouse if filing jointly), or (c) any age if permanently and totally disabled. Free tax service   The child must have lived with you for more than half of the year. Free tax service 2   The child must not have provided more than half of his or her own support for the year. Free tax service   The child is not filing a joint return for the year (unless that joint return is filed only as a claim for refund of withheld income tax or estimated tax paid). Free tax service   1. Free tax service    2. Free tax service       3. Free tax service    4. Free tax service The person cannot be your qualifying child or the qualifying child of anyone else. Free tax service   The person either (a) must be related to you in one of the ways listed under Relatives who do not have to live with you in Publication 501 or (b) must live with you all year as a member of your household 2 (and your relationship must not violate local law). Free tax service   The person's gross income for the year must be less than $3,900. Free tax service 3   You must provide more than half of the person's total support for the year. Free tax service 4 If the child meets the rules to be a qualifying child of more than one person, only one person can actually treat the child as a qualifying child. Free tax service See Special Rule for Qualifying Child of More Than One Person , later, to find out which person is the person entitled to claim the child as a qualifying child. Free tax service     1 Exception exists for certain adopted children. Free tax service 2 Exceptions exist for temporary absences, children who were born or died during the year, children of divorced or separated parents (or parents who live apart), and kidnapped children. Free tax service 3 Exception exists for persons who are disabled and have income from a sheltered workshop. Free tax service 4 Exceptions exist for multiple support agreements, children of divorced or separated parents (or parents who live apart), and kidnapped children. Free tax service See Publication 501. Free tax service You may be entitled to a child tax credit for each qualifying child who was under age 17 at the end of the year if you claimed an exemption for that child. Free tax service For more information, see the instructions for your tax return if you file Form 1040A or 1040. Free tax service Children of Divorced or Separated Parents (or Parents Who Live Apart) In most cases, because of the residency test (see item 3 under Tests To Be a Qualifying Child in Table 3), a child of divorced or separated parents is the qualifying child of the custodial parent. Free tax service However, the child will be treated as the qualifying child of the noncustodial parent if the special rule (discussed next) applies. Free tax service Special rule for divorced or separated parents (or parents who live apart). Free tax service   A child will be treated as the qualifying child of his or her noncustodial parent if all four of the following statements are true. Free tax service The parents: 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 year, whether or not they are or were married. Free tax service The child received over half of his or her support for the year from the parents. Free tax service The child is in the custody of one or both parents for more than half of the year. Free tax service Either of the following applies. Free tax service The custodial parent signs a written declaration, discussed later, that he or she will not claim the child as a dependent for the year, and the noncustodial parent attaches this written declaration to his or her return. Free tax service (If the decree or agreement went into effect after 1984, see Divorce decree or separation agreement that went into effect after 1984 and before 2009 , later. Free tax service A pre-1985 decree of divorce or separate maintenance or written separation agreement that applies to 2013 states that the noncustodial parent can claim the child as a dependent, the decree or agreement was not changed after 1984 to say the noncustodial parent cannot claim the child as a dependent, and the noncustodial parent provides at least $600 for the child's support during 2013. Free tax service See Child support under pre-1985 agreement , later. Free tax service Custodial parent and noncustodial parent. Free tax service   The custodial parent is the parent with whom the child lived for the greater number of nights during the year. Free tax service The other parent is the noncustodial parent. Free tax service   If the parents divorced or separated during the year and the child lived with both parents before the separation, the custodial parent is the one with whom the child lived for the greater number of nights during the rest of the year. Free tax service   A child is treated as living with a parent for a night if the child sleeps: At that parent's home, whether or not the parent is present, or In the company of the parent, when the child does not sleep at a parent's home (for example, the parent and child are on vacation together). Free tax service Equal number of nights. Free tax service   If the child lived with each parent for an equal number of nights during the year, the custodial parent is the parent with the higher adjusted gross income. Free tax service December 31. Free tax service   The night of December 31 is treated as part of the year in which it begins. Free tax service For example, December 31, 2013, is treated as part of 2013. Free tax service Emancipated child. Free tax service   If a child is emancipated under state law, the child is treated as not living with either parent. Free tax service See Examples 5 and 6 . Free tax service Absences. Free tax service    If a child was not with either parent on a particular night (because, for example, the child was staying at a friend's house), the child is treated as living with the parent with whom the child normally would have lived for that night, except for the absence. Free tax service But if it cannot be determined with which parent the child normally would have lived or if the child would not have lived with either parent that night, the child is treated as not living with either parent that night. Free tax service Parent works at night. Free tax service   If, due to a parent's nighttime work schedule, a child lives for a greater number of days but not nights with the parent who works at night, that parent is treated as the custodial parent. Free tax service On a school day, the child is treated as living at the primary residence registered with the school. Free tax service Example 1 – child lived with one parent greater number of nights. Free tax service You and your child’s other parent are divorced. Free tax service In 2013, your child lived with you 210 nights and with the other parent 156 nights. Free tax service You are the custodial parent. Free tax service Example 2 – child is away at camp. Free tax service In 2013, your daughter lives with each parent for alternate weeks. Free tax service In the summer, she spends 6 weeks at summer camp. Free tax service During the time she is at camp, she is treated as living with you for 3 weeks and with her other parent, your ex-spouse, for 3 weeks because this is how long she would have lived with each parent if she had not attended summer camp. Free tax service Example 3 – child lived same number of days with each parent. Free tax service Your son lived with you 180 nights during the year and lived the same number of nights with his other parent, your ex-spouse. Free tax service Your adjusted gross income is $40,000. Free tax service Your ex-spouse's adjusted gross income is $25,000. Free tax service You are treated as your son's custodial parent because you have the higher adjusted gross income. Free tax service Example 4 – child is at parent’s home but with other parent. Free tax service Your son normally lives with you during the week and with his other parent, your ex-spouse, every other weekend. Free tax service You become ill and are hospitalized. Free tax service The other parent lives in your home with your son for 10 consecutive days while you are in the hospital. Free tax service Your son is treated as living with you during this 10-day period because he was living in your home. Free tax service Example 5 – child emancipated in May. Free tax service When your son turned age 18 in May 2013, he became emancipated under the law of the state where he lives. Free tax service As a result, he is not considered in the custody of his parents for more than half of the year. Free tax service The special rule for children of divorced or separated parents (or parents who live apart) does not apply. Free tax service Example 6 – child emancipated in August. Free tax service Your daughter lives with you from January 1, 2013, until May 31, 2013, and lives with her other parent, your ex-spouse, from June 1, 2013, through the end of the year. Free tax service She turns 18 and is emancipated under state law on August 1, 2013. Free tax service Because she is treated as not living with either parent beginning on August 1, she is treated as living with you the greater number of nights in 2013. Free tax service You are the custodial parent. Free tax service Written declaration. Free tax service    The custodial parent must use either Form 8332 or a similar statement (containing the same information required by the form) to make the written declaration to release the exemption to the noncustodial parent. Free tax service The noncustodial parent must attach a copy of the form or statement to his or her tax return. Free tax service   The exemption can be released for 1 year, for a number of specified years (for example, alternate years), or for all future years, as specified in the declaration. Free tax service Divorce decree or separation agreement that went into effect after 1984 and before 2009. Free tax service   If the divorce decree or separation agreement went into effect after 1984 and before 2009, the noncustodial parent may be able to attach certain pages from the decree or agreement instead of Form 8332. Free tax service To be able to do this, the decree or agreement must state all three of the following. Free tax service The noncustodial parent can claim the child as a dependent without regard to any condition, such as payment of support. Free tax service The custodial parent will not claim the child as a dependent for the year. Free tax service The years for which the noncustodial parent, rather than the custodial parent, can claim the child as a dependent. Free tax service   The noncustodial parent must attach all of the following pages of the decree or agreement to his or her return. Free tax service The cover page (write the other parent's social security number on this page). Free tax service The pages that include all of the information identified in items (1) through (3) above. Free tax service The signature page with the other parent's signature and the date of the agreement. Free tax service Post-2008 divorce decree or separation agreement. Free tax service   If the decree or agreement went into effect after 2008, a noncustodial parent claiming an exemption for a child cannot attach pages from a divorce decree or separation agreement instead of Form 8332. Free tax service The custodial parent must sign either a Form 8332 or a similar statement. Free tax service The only purpose of this statement must be to release the custodial parent's claim to the child's exemption. Free tax service The noncustodial parent must attach a copy to his or her return. Free tax service The form or statement must release the custodial parent's claim to the child without any conditions. Free tax service For example, the release must not depend on the noncustodial parent paying support. Free tax service    The noncustodial parent must attach the required information even if it was filed with a return in an earlier year. Free tax service Revocation of release of claim to an exemption. Free tax service   The custodial parent can revoke a release of claim to exemption that he or she previously released to the noncustodial parent on Form 8332 or a similar statement. Free tax service In order for the revocation to be effective for 2013, the custodial parent must have given (or made reasonable efforts to give) written notice of the revocation to the noncustodial parent in 2012 or earlier. Free tax service The custodial parent can use Part III of Form 8332 for this purpose and must attach a copy of the revocation to his or her return for each tax year he or she claims the child as a dependent as a result of the revocation. Free tax service Remarried parent. Free tax service   If you remarry, the support provided by your new spouse is treated as provided by you. Free tax service Child support under pre-1985 agreement. Free tax service   All child support payments actually received from the noncustodial parent under a pre-1985 agreement are considered used for the support of the child, even if such amounts are not actually spent for child support. Free tax service Example. Free tax service Under a pre-1985 agreement, the noncustodial parent provides $1,200 for the child's support. Free tax service This amount is considered support provided by the noncustodial parent even if the $1,200 was actually spent on things other than support. Free tax service Parents who never married. Free tax service   The special rule for divorced or separated parents also applies to parents who never married and lived apart at all times during the last 6 months of the year. Free tax service Alimony. Free tax service   Payments to your spouse that are includible in his or her gross income as either alimony, separate maintenance payments, or similar payments from an estate or trust, are not treated as a payment for the support of a dependent. Free tax service Special Rule for Qualifying Child of More Than One Person If your qualifying child is not a qualifying child of anyone else, this special rule does not apply to you and you do not need to read about it. Free tax service This is also true if your qualifying child is not a qualifying child of anyone else except your spouse with whom you file a joint return. Free tax service If a child is treated as the qualifying child of the noncustodial parent under the Special rule for divorced or separated parents (or parents who live apart), earlier, see Applying this special rule to divorced or separated parents (or parents who live apart), later. Free tax service Sometimes, a child meets the relationship, age, residency, support, and joint return tests to be a qualifying child of more than one person. Free tax service (For a description of these tests, see list items 1 through 5 under Tests To Be a Qualifying Child in Table 3). Free tax service Although the child meets the conditions to be a qualifying child of each of these persons, only one person can actually use the child as a qualifying child to take all of the following tax benefits (provided the person is eligible for each benefit). Free tax service The exemption for the child. Free tax service The child tax credit. Free tax service Head of household filing status. Free tax service The credit for child and dependent care expenses. Free tax service The exclusion from income for dependent care benefits. Free tax service The earned income credit. Free tax service The other person cannot take any of these benefits based on this qualifying child. Free tax service In other words, you and the other person cannot agree to divide these tax benefits between you. Free tax service The other person cannot take any of these tax benefits unless he or she has a different qualifying child. Free tax service Tiebreaker rules. Free tax service   To determine which person can treat the child as a qualifying child to claim these six tax benefits, the following tiebreaker rules apply. Free tax service If only one of the persons is the child's parent, the child is treated as the qualifying child of the parent. Free tax service If the parents do not file a joint return together but both parents claim the child as a qualifying child, the IRS will treat the child as the qualifying child of the parent with whom the child lived for the longer period of time during the year. Free tax service If the child lived with each parent for the same amount of time, the IRS will treat the child as the qualifying child of the parent who had the higher adjusted gross income (AGI) for the year. Free tax service If no parent can claim the child as a qualifying child, the child is treated as the qualifying child of the person who had the highest AGI for the year. Free tax service If a parent can claim the child as a qualifying child but no parent does so claim the child, the child is treated as the qualifying child of the person who had the highest AGI for the year, but only if that person's AGI is higher than the highest AGI of any of the child's parents who can claim the child. Free tax service If the child's parents file a joint return with each other, this rule can be applied by dividing the parents' total AGI evenly between them; see Publication 501 for details. Free tax service   Subject to these tiebreaker rules, you and the other person may be able to choose which of you claims the child as a qualifying child. Free tax service Example 1—separated parents. Free tax service You, your husband, and your 10-year-old son lived together until August 1, 2013, when your husband moved out of the household. Free tax service In August and September, your son lived with you. Free tax service For the rest of the year, your son lived with your husband, the boy's father. Free tax service Your son is a qualifying child of both you and your husband because your son lived with each of you for more than half the year and because he met the relationship, age, support, and joint return tests for both of you. Free tax service At the end of the year, you and your husband still were not divorced, legally separated, or separated under a written separation agreement, so the special rule for divorced or separated parents (or parents who live apart) does not apply. Free tax service You and your husband will file separate returns. Free tax service Your husband agrees to let you treat your son as a qualifying child. Free tax service This means, if your husband does not claim your son as a qualifying child, you can claim your son as a dependent and treat him as a qualifying child for the child tax credit and exclusion for dependent care benefits, if you qualify for each of those tax benefits. Free tax service However, you cannot claim head of household filing status because you and your husband did not live apart the last 6 months of the year. Free tax service And, as a result of your filing status being married filing separately, you cannot claim the earned income credit or the credit for child and dependent care expenses. Free tax service Example 2—separated parents claim same child. Free tax service The facts are the same as in Example 1 except that you and your husband both claim your son as a qualifying child. Free tax service In this case, only your husband will be allowed to treat your son as a qualifying child. Free tax service This is because, during 2013, the boy lived with him longer than with you. Free tax service If you claimed an exemption, the child tax credit, or the exclusion for dependent care benefits for your son, the IRS will disallow your claim to all these tax benefits, unless you have another qualifying child. Free tax service In addition, because you and your husband did not live apart the last 6 months of the year, your husband cannot claim head of household filing status. Free tax service And, as a result of his filing status being married filing separately, he cannot claim the earned income credit or the credit for child and dependent care expenses. Free tax service Applying this special rule to divorced or separated parents (or parents who live apart). Free tax service   If a child is treated as the qualifying child of the noncustodial parent under the special rule for divorced or separated parents (or parents who live apart) described earlier, only the noncustodial parent can claim an exemption and the child tax credit for the child. Free tax service However, the noncustodial parent cannot claim the child as a qualifying child for head of household filing status, the credit for child and dependent care expenses, the exclusion for dependent care benefits, and the earned income credit. Free tax service Only the custodial parent, if eligible, or another eligible taxpayer can claim the child as a qualifying child for those four tax benefits. Free tax service If the child is the qualifying child of more than one person for those tax benefits, the tiebreaker rules determine which person can treat the child as a qualifying child. Free tax service Example 1. Free tax service You and your 5-year-old son lived all year with your mother, who paid the entire cost of keeping up the home. Free tax service Your AGI is $10,000. Free tax service Your mother's AGI is $25,000. Free tax service Your son's father does not live with you or your son. Free tax service Under the rules for children of divorced or separated parents (or parents who live apart), your son is treated as the qualifying child of his father, who can claim an exemption and the child tax credit for the child if he meets all the requirements to do so. Free tax service Because of this, you cannot claim an exemption or the child tax credit for your son. Free tax service However, your son's father cannot claim your son as a qualifying child for head of household filing status, the credit for child and dependent care expenses, the exclusion for dependent care benefits, or the earned income credit. Free tax service You and your mother did not have any child care expenses or dependent care benefits, but the boy is a qualifying child of both you and your mother for head of household filing status and the earned income credit because he meets the relationship, age, residency, support, and joint return tests for both you and your mother. Free tax service (Note: The support test does not apply for the earned income credit. Free tax service ) However, you agree to let your mother claim your son. Free tax service This means she can claim him for head of household filing status and the earned income credit if she qualifies for each and if you do not claim him as a qualifying child for the earned income credit. Free tax service (You cannot claim head of household filing status because your mother paid the entire cost of keeping up the home. Free tax service ) Example 2. Free tax service The facts are the same as in Example 1 except that your AGI is $25,000 and your mother's AGI is $21,000. Free tax service Your mother cannot claim your son as a qualifying child for any purpose because her AGI is not higher than yours. Free tax service Example 3. Free tax service The facts are the same as in Example 1 except that you and your mother both claim your son as a qualifying child for the earned income credit. Free tax service Your mother also claims him as a qualifying child for head of household filing status. Free tax service You, as the child's parent, will be the only one allowed to claim your son as a qualifying child for the earned income credit. Free tax service The IRS will disallow your mother's claim to the earned income credit and head of household filing status unless she has another qualifying child. Free tax service Phaseout of Exemptions The amount you can claim as a deduction for exemptions is reduced once your adjusted gross income (AGI) goes above a certain level for your filing status. Free tax service These levels are as follows:    Filing Status AGI Level That Reduces Exemption Amount Married filing separately $150,000 Single 250,000 Head of household 275,000 Married filing jointly 300,000 Qualifying widow(er) 300,000 You must reduce the dollar amount of your exemptions by 2% for each $2,500, or part of $2,500 ($1,250 if you are married filing separately), that your AGI exceeds the amount shown above for your filing status. Free tax service If your AGI exceeds the amount shown above by more than $122,500 ($61,250 if married filing separately), the amount of your deduction for exemptions is reduced to zero. Free tax service If your AGI exceeds the level for your filing status, use the Deduction for Exemptions Worksheet found in the instructions for Form 1040 or Form 1040NR to figure the amount of your deduction for exemptions. Free tax service Alimony Alimony is a payment to or for a spouse or former spouse under a divorce or separation instrument. Free tax service It does not include voluntary payments that are not made under a divorce or separation instrument. Free tax service Alimony is deductible by the payer and must be included in the spouse's or former spouse's income. Free tax service Although this discussion is generally written for the payer of the alimony, the recipient can use the information to determine whether an amount received is alimony. Free tax service To be alimony, a payment must meet certain requirements. Free tax service There are some differences between the requirements that apply to payments under instruments executed after 1984 and to payments under instruments executed before 1985. Free tax service The general requirements that apply to payments regardless of when the divorce or separation instrument was executed and the specific requirements that apply to post-1984 instruments (and, in certain cases, some pre-1985 instruments) are discussed in this publication. Free tax service See, Instruments Executed Before 1985 , later, if you are looking for information on where to find the specific requirements that apply to pre-1985 instruments. Free tax service Spouse or former spouse. Free tax service   Unless otherwise stated, the term “spouse” includes former spouse. Free tax service Divorce or separation instrument. Free tax service   The term “divorce or separation instrument” means: A decree of divorce or separate maintenance or a written instrument incident to that decree, A written separation agreement, or A decree or any type of court order requiring a spouse to make payments for the support or maintenance of the other spouse. Free tax service This includes a temporary decree, an interlocutory (not final) decree, and a decree of alimony pendente lite (while awaiting action on the final decree or agreement). Free tax service Invalid decree. Free tax service   Payments under a divorce decree can be alimony even if the decree's validity is in question. Free tax service A divorce decree is valid for tax purposes until a court having proper jurisdiction holds it invalid. Free tax service Amended instrument. Free tax service   An amendment to a divorce decree may change the nature of your payments. Free tax service Amendments are not ordinarily retroactive for federal tax purposes. Free tax service However, a retroactive amendment to a divorce decree correcting a clerical error to reflect the original intent of the court will generally be effective retroactively for federal tax purposes. Free tax service Example 1. Free tax service A court order retroactively corrected a mathematical error under your divorce decree to express the original intent to spread the payments over more than 10 years. Free tax service This change also is effective retroactively for federal tax purposes. Free tax service Example 2. Free tax service Your original divorce decree did not fix any part of the payment as child support. Free tax service To reflect the true intention of the court, a court order retroactively corrected the error by designating a part of the payment as child support. Free tax service The amended order is effective retroactively for federal tax purposes. Free tax service Deducting alimony paid. Free tax service   You can deduct alimony you paid, whether or not you itemize deductions on your return. Free tax service You must file Form 1040. Free tax service You cannot use Form 1040A, 1040EZ, or 1040NR. Free tax service Enter the amount of alimony you paid on Form 1040, line 31a. Free tax service In the space provided on line 31b, enter your spouse's social security number (SSN) or IRS individual taxpayer identification number (ITIN). Free tax service If you paid alimony to more than one person, enter the SSN or ITIN of one of the recipients. Free tax service Show the SSN or ITIN and amount paid to each other recipient on an attached statement. Free tax service Enter your total payments on line 31a. Free tax service If you do not provide your spouse's SSN or ITIN, you may have to pay a $50 penalty and your deduction may be disallowed. Free tax service Reporting alimony received. Free tax service   Report alimony you received as income on Form 1040, line 11, or on Schedule NEC (Form 1040NR), line 12. Free tax service You cannot use Form 1040A, 1040EZ, or 1040NR-EZ. Free tax service    You must give the person who paid the alimony your SSN or ITIN. Free tax service If you do not, you may have to pay a $50 penalty. Free tax service Withholding on nonresident aliens. Free tax service   If you are a U. Free tax service S. Free tax service citizen or resident alien and you pay alimony to a nonresident alien spouse, you may have to withhold income tax at a rate of 30% on each payment. Free tax service However, many tax treaties provide for an exemption from withholding for alimony payments. Free tax service For more information, see Publication 515, Withholding of Tax on Nonresident Aliens and Foreign Entities. Free tax service General Rules The following rules apply to alimony regardless of when the divorce or separation instrument was executed. Free tax service Payments not alimony. Free tax service   Not all payments under a divorce or separation instrument are alimony. Free tax service Alimony does not include: Child support, Noncash property settlements, Payments that are your spouse's part of community income, as explained later under Community Property , Payments to keep up the payer's property, or Use of the payer's property. Free tax service Example. Free tax service Under your written separation agreement, your spouse lives rent-free in a home you own and you must pay the mortgage, real estate taxes, insurance, repairs, and utilities for the home. Free tax service Because you own the home and the debts are yours, your payments for the mortgage, real estate taxes, insurance, and repairs are not alimony. Free tax service Neither is the value of your spouse's use of the home. Free tax service If they otherwise qualify, you can deduct the payments for utilities as alimony. Free tax service Your spouse must report them as income. Free tax service If you itemize deductions, you can deduct the real estate taxes and, if the home is a qualified home, you can also include the interest on the mortgage in figuring your deductible interest. Free tax service However, if your spouse owned the home, see Example 2 under Payments to a third party, later. Free tax service If you owned the home jointly with your spouse, see Table 4. Free tax service For more information on a qualified home and deductible mortgage interest, see Publication 936, Home Mortgage Interest Deduction. Free tax service Child support. Free tax service   To determine whether a payment is child support, see the discussion under Instruments Executed After 1984 , later. Free tax service If your divorce or separation agreement was executed before 1985, see the 2004 revision of Publication 504 available at www. Free tax service irs. Free tax service gov/formspubs. Free tax service Underpayment. Free tax service   If both alimony and child support payments are called for by your divorce or separation instrument, and you pay less than the total required, the payments apply first to child support and then to alimony. Free tax service Example. Free tax service Your divorce decree calls for you to pay your former spouse $200 a month ($2,400 ($200 x 12) a year) as child support and $150 a month ($1,800 ($150 x 12) a year) as alimony. Free tax service If you pay the full amount of $4,200 ($2,400 + $1,800) during the year, you can deduct $1,800 as alimony and your former spouse must report $1,800 as alimony received. Free tax service If you pay only $3,600 during the year, $2,400 is child support. Free tax service You can deduct only $1,200 ($3,600 – $2,400) as alimony and your former spouse must report $1,200 as alimony received. Free tax service Payments to a third party. Free tax service   Cash payments, checks, or money orders to a third party on behalf of your spouse under the terms of your divorce or separation instrument can be alimony, if they otherwise qualify. Free tax service These include payments for your spouse's medical expenses, housing costs (rent, utilities, etc. Free tax service ), taxes, tuition, etc. Free tax service The payments are treated as received by your spouse and then paid to the third party. Free tax service Example 1. Free tax service Under your divorce decree, you must pay your former spouse's medical and dental expenses. Free tax service If the payments otherwise qualify, you can deduct them as alimony on your return. Free tax service Your former spouse must report them as alimony received and can include them in figuring deductible medical expenses. Free tax service Example 2. Free tax service Under your separation agreement, you must pay the real estate taxes, mortgage payments, and insurance premiums on a home owned by your spouse. Free tax service If they otherwise qualify, you can deduct the payments as alimony on your return, and your spouse must report them as alimony received. Free tax service If itemizing deductions, your spouse can deduct the real estate taxes and, if the home is a qualified home, also include the interest on the mortgage in figuring deductible interest. Free tax service However, if you owned the home, see the example under Payments not alimony , earlier. Free tax service If you owned the home jointly with your spouse, see Table 4. Free tax service Life insurance premiums. Free tax service   Alimony includes premiums you must pay under your divorce or separation instrument for insurance on your life to the extent your spouse owns the policy. Free tax service Payments for jointly-owned home. Free tax service   If your divorce or separation instrument states that you must pay expenses for a home owned by you and your spouse or former spouse, some of your payments may be alimony. Free tax service See Table 4. Free tax service   However, if your spouse owned the home, see Example 2 under Payments to a third party, earlier. Free tax service If you owned the home, see the example under Payments not alimony , earlier. Free tax service Table 4. Free tax service Expenses for a Jointly-Owned Home Use the table below to find how much of your payment is alimony and how much you can claim as an itemized deduction. Free tax service IF you must pay all of the . Free tax service . Free tax service . Free tax service AND your home is . Free tax service . Free tax service . Free tax service THEN you can deduct and your spouse (or former spouse) must include as alimony . Free tax service . Free tax service . Free tax service AND you can claim as an itemized deduction . Free tax service . Free tax service . Free tax service   mortgage payments (principal and interest) jointly owned half of the total payments half of the interest as interest expense (if the home is a qualified home). Free tax service 1   real estate taxes and home insurance held as tenants in common half of the total payments half of the real estate taxes2 and none of the home insurance. Free tax service     held as tenants by the entirety or in joint tenancy none of the payments all of the real estate taxes and none of the home insurance. Free tax service 1 Your spouse (or former spouse) can deduct the other half of the interest if the home is a qualified home. Free tax service  2 Your spouse (or former spouse) can deduct the other half of the real estate taxes. Free tax service Instruments Executed After 1984 The following rules for alimony apply to payments under divorce or separation instruments executed after 1984. Free tax service Exception for instruments executed before 1985. Free tax service   There are two situations where the rules for instruments executed after 1984 apply to instruments executed before 1985. Free tax service A divorce or separation instrument executed before 1985 and then modified after 1984 to specify that the after-1984 rules will apply. Free tax service A temporary divorce or separation instrument executed before 1985 and incorporated into, or adopted by, a final decree executed after 1984 that: Changes the amount or period of payment, or Adds or deletes any contingency or condition. Free tax service   For the rules for alimony payments under pre-1985 instruments not meeting these exceptions, see the 2004 revision of Publication 504 available at www. Free tax service irs. Free tax service gov/formspubs. Free tax service Example 1. Free tax service In November 1984, you and your former spouse executed a written separation agreement. Free tax service In February 1985, a decree of divorce was substituted for the written separation agreement. Free tax service The decree of divorce did not change the terms for the alimony you pay your former spouse. Free tax service The decree of divorce is treated as executed before 1985. Free tax service Alimony payments under this decree are not subject to the rules for payments under instruments executed after 1984. Free tax service Example 2. Free tax service The facts are the same as in Example 1 except that the decree of divorce changed the amount of the alimony. Free tax service In this example, the decree of divorce is not treated as executed before 1985. Free tax service The alimony payments are subject to the rules for payments under instruments executed after 1984. Free tax service Alimony Requirements A payment to or for a spouse under a divorce or separation instrument is alimony if the spouses do not file a joint return with each other and all the following requirements are met. Free tax service The payment is in cash. Free tax service The instrument does not designate the payment as not alimony. Free tax service The spouses are not members of the same household at the time the payments are made. Free tax service This requirement applies only if the spouses are legally separated under a decree of divorce or separate maintenance. Free tax service There is no liability to make any payment (in cash or property) after the death of the recipient spouse. Free tax service The payment is not treated as child support. Free tax service Each of these requirements is discussed next. Free tax service Cash payment requirement. Free tax service   Only cash payments, including checks and money orders, qualify as alimony. Free tax service The following do not qualify as alimony. Free tax service Transfers of services or property (including a debt instrument of a third party or an annuity contract). Free tax service Execution of a debt instrument by the payer. Free tax service The use of the payer's property. Free tax service Payments to a third party. Free tax service   Cash payments to a third party under the terms of your divorce or separation instrument can qualify as cash payments to your spouse. Free tax service See Payments to a third party under General Rules, earlier. Free tax service   Also, cash payments made to a third party at the written request of your spouse may qualify as alimony if all the following requirements are met. Free tax service The payments are in lieu of payments of alimony directly to your spouse. Free tax service The written request states that both spouses intend the payments to be treated as alimony. Free tax service You receive the written request from your spouse before you file your return for the year you made the payments. Free tax service Payments designated as not alimony. Free tax service   You and your spouse can designate that otherwise qualifying payments are not alimony. Free tax service You do this by including a provision in your divorce or separation instrument that states the payments are not deductible as alimony by you and are excludable from your spouse's income. Free tax service For this purpose, any instrument (written statement) signed by both of you that makes this designation and that refers to a previous written separation agreement is treated as a written separation agreement (and therefore a divorce or separation instrument). Free tax service If you are subject to temporary support orders, the designation must be made in the original or a later temporary support order. Free tax service   Your spouse can exclude the payments from income only if he or she attaches a copy of the instrument designating them as not alimony to his or her return. Free tax service The copy must be attached each year the designation applies. Free tax service Spouses cannot be members of the same household. Free tax service   Payments to your spouse while you are members of the same household are not alimony if you are legally separated under a decree of divorce or separate maintenance. Free tax service A home you formerly shared is considered one household, even if you physically separate yourselves in the home. Free tax service   You are not treated as members of the same household if one of you is preparing to leave the household and does leave no later than 1 month after the date of the payment. Free tax service Exception. Free tax service   If you are not legally separated under a decree of divorce or separate maintenance, a payment under a written separation agreement, support decree, or other court order may qualify as alimony even if you are members of the same household when the payment is made. Free tax service Liability for payments after death of recipient spouse. Free tax service   If any part of payments you make must continue to be made for any period after your spouse's death, that part of your payments is not alimony whether made before or after the death. Free tax service If all of the payments would continue, then none of the payments made before or after the death are alimony. Free tax service   The divorce or separation instrument does not have to expressly state that the payments cease upon the