Who is Eligible to Claim a Child Care Tax Credit?

The child care tax credit allows the filer to claim $3,000 in child care costs for one child, or $6,000 for more than one child. This credit can offset the costs incurred on working parents paying for a daycare or family care provider to care for their children. There are requirements you must meet in order to claim the credit.


  • You must have a dependent child under the age of twelve years old. Sometimes a spouse or other dependent who is disabled and needs care during the day may qualify.
  • The care that is being deducted must have been for you or your spouse to go to work or look for a job.
  • You and your spouse had to have income in the year that you are using the credit.
  • You have to file as single, head of household, or married filing jointly. You cannot file as married filing separately.
  • You cannot pay your spouse or any other dependent to watch your children and claim that for the credit.

If you meet these criteria, then you can claim the child care credit on your taxes. You will use form 2441 on the 1040A in order to file for the credit.

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