If your child meets all of the following conditions, you can claim your child's interest or dividends on your return:
- The child was under age 19 (or under 24 if a full-time student) at the end of 2019.
- The child's only income was from interest and dividends, including capital gain distributions and Alaska Permanent Fund dividends.
- Their gross income for 2020 was less than $11,000
- The child is required to file a return unless you make this election to include their
- The child does not file a joint tax return for 2020
- There were no estimated tax payments for the child for 2020 (including any overpayment of tax from his or her 2019 return applied to 2020 estimated tax)
- There was no federal income tax withheld from their income
- You are the parent whose return must be used when applying the special tax rules for children. (See Which Parent's Return To Use below)
Which Parent's Return should be used?
Per the IRS, "If a child’s parents are married to each other and file a joint return, use the joint return when electing to report the child’s interest and dividend income on their return. For other situations when the parents do not file a joint return, see Parents Who Don't File a Joint Return next."
Do I qualify to make this election?
Keep in mind that you as a parent must also qualify to make this election. You qualify for this election if you file Form 1040, Form 1040-SR and any of the following apply to you:
- You are filing a joint return for 2020 with child's other parent
- You and the child's other parent were married to each other but file separate returns for 2020 and you had the higher taxable income
- Were unmarried, treated as unmarried for federal income tax purposes, or separated from the child's other parent by a divorce or separate maintenance decree.