Generally, the Head of Household filing status applies to unmarried individuals (or married individuals considered unmarried) who provide a home for a qualified individual.
A married individual is considered unmarried for HOH purposes if ALL of the following apply:
- The taxpayer lived apart from his or her spouse for the last 6 months of the year.
- The taxpayer does not file a joint return with his or her spouse.
- The taxpayer paid over half of the cost of keeping up the home during the year.
- The taxpayer's home was the main home of the taxpayer's child, stepchild or foster child for more than half of the year.
- The taxpayer claims this child as a dependent, or the child's other parent claims the child as a dependent pursuant to the rules for children of Divorced or Separated Parents Decree.
There is a HOH worksheet built into the program that can help you determine HOH eligibility. From the Main Menu of TaxSlayer Pro select:
- Advanced Configuration (Macros)
- Use Head of Household Worksheet
With this option set to YES, when you create a new return and select HOH as the taxpayer's filing status, you will be prompted with a series of eligibility questions to determine if the taxpayer can file using this status.
Can A Married Taxpayer Claim Their Spouse's Dependent Exemption?
A taxpayer filing MFS or HOH can claim an exemption for his or her spouse if:
- They are still married at the end of the year,
- The spouse has no income and is not filing their own return, and
- The spouse cannot be claimed as a dependent by another taxpayer.
To claim a spouse's exemption, from the Main Menu of the Tax Return (Form 1040) select:
- Personal Information
- Other Categories (Form 8914 - Housing Exemptions)
- HOH or MFS and Claiming Spouse Exemption