Note: The DearEsq free 'ask a lawyer' site is offered as a free informational service to the public and is not intended as legal advice. Laws vary from state-to-state, and in addition every situation is unique, and relevant facts may not be known. The answer to the question posed below may not apply to in your state or to your situation. For legal advice in your state and your situation you should consult with an attorney in your state who is familiar with the rules and laws in your state.
I read the answer regarding tax relief for non-custodial parents. My question is regarding joint custody. Since we have joint custody, but the child’s primary residence is not with me, I pay child support. Do I get to deduct those payments for tax purposes? My ex claims the child as a dependent.
Typically, whomever has court-ordered physical custody of a child is the one who is entitled to claim that child as a dependent for tax purposes. Based on the information you provided, since you and your wife have joint custody, you two will need to decide who will be claiming your daughter for tax purposes.
Most parents typically alternate who takes the tax deduction when there is one child. For instance, one parent may take the deduction on odd years, and the other parent will take the deduction on even years.
Additionally, no you cannot deduct child support payments from your federal taxes. You will need to check your state tax code to see if different regulations apply.