1. Parenting

Are You Missing a Child or Child Care Tax Benefit?

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Have you checked out every possible child and child care tax benefit allowed under federal law? To make sure you're getting every possible child care tax benefit, educate yourself. From the dependent tax deduction to the child care tax credit, here's a rundown of the major dependent and child care tax benefits.

1. First Benefit: the Child Care Tax Credit

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First on the child care tax benefit menu is the dependent and child care tax credit, which reduces the amount of federal income tax you owe. If you paid a qualified caregiver or daycare center to tend a young child so you could work or look for work, you likely can claim the child care tax credit.

2. How to Claim the Child Tax Credit

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Next benefit: the child tax credit, which can reduce your family's tax bill by $1,000 for each minor child who qualifies. But first, you must meet all the tests and income limits. Learn how it works from this quick and dirty explanation.

3. Understand the Dependent Tax Deduction

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One of the most well known child tax benefits is the dependent tax deduction. It's so popular that some expectant mothers whose due date fell at the beginning of the year have induced labor in late December in order to qualify!

This provision of the U.S. tax code can indeed reduce the amount of taxes you owe, if you qualify. Here's how the dependent tax deduction works.

4. Guide to Paying the Nanny Tax

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It may not seem like a benefit, but paying the nanny tax is not only the law, it will help provide for your babysitter when it comes time to collect Medicare and Social Security. Just do it! I promise, it's not as hard as you think.

If you want to ease into it, start by figuring out if you owe nanny taxes to the U.S. government.

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