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Frequently Asked Tax Questions

Child Care Credit/Other Credits - Child and Dependent Care Credit & Flexible Benefit Plans

  1. My spouse and I both work and are eligible for the child and dependent care credit. Can I include the cost of my 5 year-old-son's private kindergarten tuition cost as a qualified expense on Form 2441, Child and Dependent Care Expenses?
  2. Why did I receive a Form W-2 reporting a benefit of $3,000 in Box 10 when my employer set aside $3,000 in wages for dependent care under a dependent care benefit plan?
  3. How do I complete Form 2441 if I have a dependent care flexible spending account?
  4. My babysitter refused to provide me with her social security number. Can I still claim the amount I paid to the babysitter for child care while I worked? If so, how do I claim these child care expenses on my tax return?
  5. I am thinking of having a family member babysit for my child full time in her home while I work. Who is responsible for paying taxes on the money I pay for this care? Can I claim this cost as a child care expense even though my family member is not a registered day care provider?
  6. Do daycare payments for an elderly person qualify for the child and dependent care credit?

Rev. date: 1/1/2010

My spouse and I both work and are eligible for the child and dependent care credit. Can I include the cost of my 5 year-old-son's private kindergarten tuition cost as a qualified expense on Form 2441, Child and Dependent Care Expenses?

The expense for kindergarten does not qualify for the child and dependent care credit because kindergarten is primarily educational in nature.

Rev. date: 1/1/2011

Why did I receive a Form W-2 reporting a benefit of $3,000 in Box 10 when my employer set aside $3,000 in wages for dependent care under a dependent care benefit plan?

This type of plan is an agreement to voluntarily reduce your salary in return for an employer-provided fringe benefit.

Rev. date: 1/1/2011

How do I complete Form 2441 if I have a dependent care flexible spending account?

You must complete Part III of Form 2441 (PDF), Child and Dependent Care Expenses, to exclude the dependent care benefit from income even if you cannot claim the child and dependent care credit.

Rev. date: 1/20/2010

My babysitter refused to provide me with her social security number. Can I still claim the amount I paid to the babysitter for child care while I worked? If so, how do I claim these child care expenses on my tax return?

Yes, if you meet the other requirements to claim the child and dependent care credit, but are missing the social security number or other taxpayer identification number of a provider, you can still claim the credit by demonstrating "due diligence" in attempting to secure this information.

Rev. date: 1/1/2011

I am thinking of having a family member babysit for my child full time in her home while I work. Who is responsible for paying taxes on the money I pay for this care? Can I claim this cost as a child care expense even though my family member is not a registered day care provider?

These payments may be qualified child care expenses if the family member babysitting is not your dependent or your child under age 19 and you otherwise qualify to claim the child and dependent care credit.
Who is responsible for taxes on these payments depends on whether your family member is your employee or is self-employed (an independent contractor).

Rev. date: 1/1/2011

Do daycare payments for an elderly person qualify for the child and dependent care credit?

Daycare payments for an elderly person may qualify as dependent care expenses if the person receiving the care is your spouse or dependent who lives with you and is incapable of self-care.