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Current Year Tax Map
Publication 519
taxmap/pubs/p519-022.htm#en_us_publink1000222442

Exemptions(p27)

rule
Resident aliens can claim personal exemptions and exemptions for dependents in the same way as U.S. citizens. However, nonresident aliens generally can claim only a personal exemption for themselves on their U.S. tax return.
taxmap/pubs/p519-022.htm#en_us_publink1000222443

Resident Aliens(p27)

rule
You can claim personal exemptions and exemptions for dependents according to the dependency rules for U.S. citizens. You can claim an exemption for your spouse on a separate return if your spouse had no gross income for U.S. tax purposes and was not the dependent of another taxpayer. You can claim this exemption even if your spouse has not been a resident alien for a full tax year or is an alien who has not come to the United States.
You can claim an exemption for each person who qualifies as a dependent according to the rules for U.S. citizens. The dependent must be a citizen or national (defined earlier) of the United States or be a resident of the United States, Canada, or Mexico for some part of the calendar year in which your tax year begins. Get Publication 501 for more information.
EIC
Your spouse and each dependent for whom you claim an exemption must have either an SSN or an ITIN. See Identification Number, earlier.
taxmap/pubs/p519-022.htm#en_us_publink1000222446

Nonresident Aliens(p27)

rule
Generally, if you are a nonresident alien engaged in a trade or business in the United States, you can claim only one personal exemption ($3,800 for 2012). You may be able to claim an exemption for a spouse and a dependent if you are described in any of the following discussions.
EIC
Your spouse and each dependent for whom you claim an exemption must have either an SSN or an ITIN. See Identification Number, earlier.
taxmap/pubs/p519-022.htm#en_us_publink1000222448

Residents of Mexico or Canada or U.S. nationals.(p27)

rule
If you are a resident of Mexico or Canada or a national of the United States (defined earlier), you can also claim a personal exemption for your spouse if your spouse had no gross income for U.S. tax purposes and cannot be claimed as the dependent on another U.S. taxpayer's return. In addition, you can claim exemptions for your dependents who meet certain tests. Residents of Mexico, Canada, or nationals of the United States must use the same rules as U.S. citizens to determine who is a dependent and for which dependents exemptions can be claimed. See Publication 501 for these rules. For purposes of these rules, dependents who are U.S. nationals meet the citizenship test discussed in Publication 501.
taxmap/pubs/p519-022.htm#en_us_publink1000222449

Residents of South Korea.(p27)

rule
Nonresident aliens who are residents of South Korea may be able to claim exemptions for a spouse and children. The income tax treaty with South Korea imposes two additional requirements on South Korean residents:
  1. The spouse and all children claimed must live with the alien in the United States at some time during the tax year, and
  2. The additional deduction for the exemptions must be prorated based on the ratio of the alien's U.S. source gross income effectively connected with a U.S. trade or business for the tax year to the alien's entire income from all sources during the tax year.
taxmap/pubs/p519-022.htm#en_us_publink1000222450

Example.(p27)

Mr. Park, a nonresident alien who is a resident of South Korea, lives temporarily in the United States with his wife and two children. During the tax year he receives U.S. compensation of $9,000. He also receives $3,000 of income from sources outside the United States that is not effectively connected with his U.S. trade or business. Thus, his total income for the year is $12,000. Mr. Park meets all requirements for claiming exemptions for his spouse and two children. The additional deduction for 2012 is $8,550 figured as follows:
 $9,000 
 $12,000 
×$11,400*=$8,550
      
  *3 × $3,800 = $11,400 
taxmap/pubs/p519-022.htm#en_us_publink1000222452

Students and business apprentices from India.(p27)

rule
Students and business apprentices who are eligible for the benefits of Article 21(2) of the United States–India Income Tax Treaty may be able to claim exemptions for their spouse and dependents.
You can claim an exemption for your spouse if he or she had no gross income during the year and cannot be claimed as a dependent on another U.S. taxpayer's return.
You can claim exemptions for each of your dependents not admitted to the United States on "F-2," "J-2," or "M-2" visas if they meet the same rules that apply to U.S. citizens. See Publication 501 for these rules.
List your spouse and dependents on line 7c of Form 1040NR. Enter the total on the appropriate line to the right of line 7c.