Dependents are either a qualifying child or a qualifying relative of the taxpayer. The taxpayer’s spouse cannot be claimed as a dependent. A dependent they must meet certain criteria.
A dependent must:
- be a child of the employee who is either under 19 or a full-time student under 24, or
- be a child of the employee who is a full-time student over 24 who is reasonably expected to receive less than $3,000 of income during the taxable year, or
- be reasonably expected to receive less than $3,000 of income during the taxable year, or
- be permanently and totally disabled and receive income for services performed at a sheltered workshop operated by a charity or government
- receive more than half his support from the employee;
- be a citizen, national, or resident of the United States, or a resident of Canada or Mexico, or an alien child adopted by and living with a United States citizen abroad;
- and be either:
(1) a child, grandchild, stepchild, parent, grandparent, stepparent, brother, sister, stepbrother, stepsister, in law, aunt, uncle, nephew, or niece of the employee, or
(2) a member of the employee's household for the taxable year and have the employee's home as his principal place of abode; and not file a joint return.