Avondale, AZ asked in Tax Law for Arizona

Q: Child tax credit

My grandson lives with me. His mother claimed his on 2020 taxes. I will claim him on 2021. Mom and father are not married and are drug addicts, unknown addresses. How do I ensure I receive the child tax credit and she doesn't receive them? I do not have legal custody but he has lived with me since October 2020 and will do so till one of them gets their life together.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Mike Branum
Mike Branum
  • Saint George, UT
  • Licensed in Arizona

A: Unless you have some form of legal custody of your grandson, I do not believe you are entitled to claim him on your taxes. You should consult a tax professional to be sure (accountant or tax attorney), but I am highly confident that you cannot claim your grandson on your taxes or get any kind of credit merely because you are caring for him. It may not be fair, but I am thinking that is the way the laws and regulations of the IRS will view your situation.

As a minimum, I would expect you would need to be appointed temporary guardian by a court.

I know this is not the answer you were hoping for. I hope either one of your grandson's parents gets their life together or you are able to obtain the legal custody required for you to claim him.

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