My Child Started College. Can I Still Claim Them as a Dependent?

If your child is now 18 and going to college, living off in the dorms, can you still claim them as a dependent on your taxes? 


When your child leaves for college, can you still claim them as a dependent on your taxes? | Accounting Plus individual, small business, and nonprofit tax and accounting in Columbia, MO

The short answer is yes: If your child’s a student under 24 and you pay at least half of their support, you can still claim them as a dependent – even if they’re living on their own and working while in college.

That ½ of their support may seem like a tough number to reach when they’re no longer at home, but keep in mind that support can include every expense you pay for. 

That includes health insurance, car insurance, their cell phone bill, housing, books, and even clothing, can count toward that support.

Why would you want to claim your college-age child on your tax return at all?

The answer is simple: you may be able to qualify for an education credit on your taxes. An education credit can mean a huge help on your tax deductions, and oftentimes parents underestimate how much that credit can help them.

We always encourage parents of college-age kids to consider claiming their children on their taxes. Are you considering claiming your child? Give us a call and we’ll help you figure it out.


If you're ready to talk about getting help with your personal taxes, we're here for you. Schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with us today and together we can figure out what's best for your business.