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Under tax reform there are a number of changes to the use of dependency.  However, for the current Enrolled Agent Exam testing season which lasts until February 28, 2019, the old rules for dependency apply.  One of the major concepts that test takers need to consider is the difference between a qualifying child and qualifying person.  For you old timers, the qualifying person rules are similar to the old-fashioned dependency rules.

Keep these points in mind.

  1. First consider the rules for qualifying child. If the individual cannot be considered a qualifying child, then turn your attention to the rules for qualifying person.
  2. The support test is vastly different for qualifying child (did the child provide over half of their own support?), and qualifying person (did taxpayers provide over half of dependents support?).
  3. Gross income test is not applicable to the qualifying child rules.
  4. Qualifying child rules are quite similar to rules for earned income credit. The main tests are age, relationship, and residency.
  5. To meet citizenship test, we consider if the dependent is a citizen. If not, were they a resident of Mexico, Canada, or U.S.