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Head of Household (HOH) is an option for a filing status for those who have a dependent child(ren).

In prior years this status was not under fire, as the Earned Income credit, Child Tax credit or the American opportunity credit.  This has changed in tax year 2018.

Now paid preparers are required to go through a due diligence checklist on Form 8867 to assure that the client qualifies for Head of Household status.

Failure to comply with the new requirements will be cause a penalty of $520 for each failure.  This means that the IRS will also be looking much more closely to any and all returns with HOH status.

I have heard stories of married people filing separately with one claiming HOH and the other claiming single.

We are aware of a couple in the beginning of a divorce, who were still married where the spouse planned to claim HOH status without meeting all of the requirements.

When is doubt call a professional for guidance.

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