Claiming adult children on income taxes

Can parents claim their adult children, who've moved back home, on their income taxes? It's an issue many parents are dealing with these days.

The IRS rules are strict about claiming adult dependents, and simply providing housing doesn't qualify.

A qualifying dependent must have been under 19 at the end of the year or 24 and a full time student.

Also, the adult child must have lived with the parent for more than half the year.

If the age test fails, claiming the child as a "qualifying relative" might work if the adult child earned less than the amount of the personal exemption, but working a part-time job usually renders the child ineligible.

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