One of the most confusing tax issues facing average people is the student tax deduction. It is possible for parents to claim a child who is attending college as a dependent under certain conditions.
The main conditions are that the student be under 24 years of age, be a full time student and have little or no income of their own. The major qualification is that the student be under 24, the student will have to be under 24 years old at the end of the tax year.
The student will also have to be a full time student which means they have to attend what the IRS defines as a school for at least five months of the year. To meet the IRS definition the school must have a campus and the student must attend classes there. Most technical and vocational schools meet these standards.
Online schools and correspondence schools do not meet this standard. Neither do on the job training courses. These educational options may qualify a person for other tax credits.
The student will also have to make little or no income of their own. This is usually considered to be less than $3,500 a year. A student who is making a lot of money from a part time or full time job should probably file their own tax return. Something else that parents should realize is that scholarships and grants to students could be considered income by the IRS.
The student will not be able to file their own tax return if the parents claim the full time student tax deduction. If a student who is being claimed for this deduction by his or her parents files their own tax return the IRS could reject both returns.