How do I obtain the head of household filing status?

In order to file as Head of Household, you must be the sole provider for your home and have a qualifying dependent.

Qualifications for Head of Household
  • You can file Head of Household if you are unmarried or considered unmarried on the last day of the year.
  • You’re paying more than half of the cost of keeping up a home for the year.

  • You were legally separated, you were married but lived apart from your Spouse for the last 6 months, you were married to a nonresident alien, or you were not divorced
  • If you were married and your spouse didn’t live with you after July 1 of the tax year, you can file Head of Household.
  • You must have paid more than half the cost of providing for a home all year which you lived in.
  • If you used public assistance programs to cover the cost of keeping up a home, do not count this assistance as how much you paid. However, you can include the assistance as the total cost of keeping up your home but figuring out if you paid over half the cost.
  • You must have provided for more than half of the expenses for your qualifying dependent(s).
  • Your dependent can be a qualifying child. This includes your biological or adopted child, stepchild, foster child, sibling, half-sibling, stepsibling or a descendant.
  • Your dependent can be a qualifying relative. This includes your parent, sibling, niece or nephew, grandparents, stepsibling, stepparent or in-laws or any other person.
  • They must have lived in your home for more than half the year. If you fostered a child, he or she must have lived with you all year.
  • If you are claiming your parents, your dependent parent does not have to live with you all year.

Read our tax blog for more details.

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