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Claiming college aged children as dependents?

Started by david123, December 18, 2018, 11:45:09 AM

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I have 2 kids in college.  I've always claimed them as dependents, but I'm not sure if that is the best strategy.

Do I have have the option of not claiming them as dependents?  If so, I'm assuming they should claim themselves as dependents - are there any advantages or disadvantages to each approach?

My wife and I make enough money that we are over the income limits for any kind of breaks.


I'm not so sure from a tax perspective, but you may want to check how your health insurance works. If they're no longer your dependents can they still stay on your health care plan? My mom kept me as a dependent while I was in college and I had health insurance through her until I got my own job after graduation. I'm not up to date on the latest health care laws though, but dependent status seems like something that should be correlated with health insurance.

Fat Tony

From my understanding, the TCJA enacted for 2018 means that you just have a standard deduction of $12K for single filers and $24K for married, and eliminated the personal exemptions (used to be $4,050 each for you and your dependents). It seems that this won't be an issue come this April 15, and you don't need to worry about it again until the 2025 tax year. The child tax credit wouldn't apply to adult/college-age dependents.