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Tax Question - Does my 18 y.o. have to file?

My 18 y.o. dd earned only about $600.00 working 3 p.t. jobs in 2009 (graduated h.s. June 2009 and has been attending comm. college). I claim her as a dependent as she lives with me full time. We figured she has a $3.00 refund coming from feds and we're wondering if she even needs to file that. Also wondering if she needs to file a CA return. We haven't figured out if she'll be at $0 or owe CA (the state seems to be sucking more $ out of everybody this year) but does she need to even bother with either return in the first place? It's not even worth it i.m.o. She filed federal only for 2008 and CA franchise tax board said it was ok if she didn't file a state return in 2008 so she didn't. I assume same would be true for 2009 since she made even less $. Should she just skip filing both federal and state since it's more trouble than it's worth? Does anybody know? Thanks ladies!

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Asked by TheMom0217 at 9:39 PM on Apr. 13, 2010 in Money & Work

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Answers (4)
  • if u claim her as a dependant then she CANT file anything. but she shouldnt have to file bc she didnt make that much.

    Answer by secondtyme520 at 9:42 PM on Apr. 13, 2010

  • There's a spot on the 1040EZ federal form where she specifies if someone else can claim her. It doesn't say anything about NOT filing if you're someone else's dependent. From what I've heard and inferred, dependents have the OPTION of filing or not filing but aren't FORBIDDEN from filing. She got a small refund from her 2008 federal return and they didn't reject the return. But that's why I'm throwing the question out does get confusing to me. Thanks for your response : )

    Answer by TheMom0217 at 9:50 PM on Apr. 13, 2010

  • I found the following on the H&R Block web site.

    If someone else can claim you as a dependent, you must file a return if you have any of the following:

    * unearned income more than $950
    * earned income more than $5,700
    * gross income more than the larger of $950 or earned income (up to $5,400) plus $300

    Answer by andrea96 at 9:25 AM on Apr. 14, 2010

  • Thanks for the info. Looks like H&R Block gives clearer answers than other sites like I think she's okay whether she decides to file for her $3.03 refund or not. As for state filing, it looks like it's all zeros and would be a waste of effort so I guess she should just skip it.

    Answer by TheMom0217 at 12:28 AM on Apr. 15, 2010

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