No matter what else is going on in your life, filing taxes is an inevitability. After a pregnancy loss, you may be confused about what you’re supposed to do on the tax form when it comes to listing dependents.
There are a few variables to consider, but you may be able to list your child as a dependent for the tax year, even if she did not survive.
Normally, a child can only be listed as a dependent if he or she has a social security number, which most parents apply for at the time of birth. However, if your baby was born and died within the same year, you can use a birth certificate, death certificate, or even hospital records.
Important Things to Know:
- Your child must be born alive according to the law of the state where you live.
- A stillborn baby does not qualify.
- You will need to provide a copy of the birth certificate and the death certificate if your baby does not have a social security number.
- On the tax form, write DIED in the blank for your dependent’s social security number.
- You can obtain a copy of your child’s birth and death certificates from the county where he or she was born.
- It may take several weeks to obtain the necessary paperwork, so plan ahead or file for an extension if necessary.
This article is not intended to be a substitute for professional financial advice, but rather to bring your attention to an issue you may need to investigate when filing your taxes. If you have any questions about whether or not you qualify for an exemption, you should contact a professional with expertise in taxes, like an attorney, or a certified public accountant (CPA).
Internal Revenue Service “Publication 501”. Accessed: 16 Apr 2012. http://www.irs.gov/publications/p501/ar02.html#en_US_2011_publink1000220886
Tax Analysts “Having a Child” Life Events Database. Tax.com. Accessed: 16 Apr 2012.