Under some circumstances, sending your child to summer day camp might qualify you for a tax credit for Child and Dependent Care Expenses.
Here are some of the key bits of information you need to know:
- Children who attend the camp must be under 13 years of age.
- Both parents must be working, or looking for work (with some rare exceptions).
- The credit is not for the full cost of the camp care, but ranges from 20-35% of the cost depending upon your income.
- There is a maximum yearly dollar amount of $3000 for one child, or $6000 for two or more children.
- Only day camps qualify, not overnight camps.
- You must file a form 1040 or 1040A (not a 1040EZ) and additional forms (at least Form 2441) are also required.
- You must identify the care provider (camp) on the forms, including name, address and taxpayer identification number.
- If you are married, you must be filing a joint tax return, not separate returns.
Please keep in mind that we know a fair bit about summer camps, but are NOT tax experts. There are additional restrictions to this tax credit, so read IRS publication 503 carefully and/or consult your tax advisor before claiming the tax credit.