Tax exemptions can be a contentious issue in custody cases. Washington child custody attorneys know that the allocation of tax exemptions can have a significant financial impact on the parties.
A recent Washington appeals court decision addressed a case in which the mother claimed the tax exemption for her younger child in two years despite the court’s order allocating the exemption to her former husband in those years. The order in effect at the time split the exemptions for the two children between the parents as long as the exemption existed for the older child. When there was no longer an exemption for the older child, the exemption for the younger child would alternate.
Under the order, the father had the right to the exemption in 2012, but both parties claimed it. Consequently, the father was audited and had to pay the IRS more than $2,000. He moved to have the mother held in contempt and asked the court to require the mother to sign a dependency exemption waiver for 2012 and 2014. The mother argued she claimed the exemption because the father had not paid his share of the child’s medical expenses.