$500 Non-Child Dependent or Flexible Credit in Trump/GOP Tax Reform Bill

4 comments

The now passed GOP/Trump tax bill contains a little known but important $500 credit for non-child dependents – e.g elderly or disabled dependents or children over 17. This credit is to provide some relief to those families who will lose the now defunct personal exemption and are not eligible for the expanded Child Tax Credit (CTC). Both the CTC and non-child credit can be claimed for eligible dependents from 2018 onwards (taxes filed in 2019).


Like the CTC, this $500 “non-child” credit is subject to income eligibility thresholds and will phase out (reduce in value) for for those with incomes (AGI) above $200,000 (single) and $400,000 (married).

This credit was originally $300 in the house and Senate bills (where it was called a flexibility credit), but was increased to $500 in the final bill sent to the President for signing into law. Note however that the CTC and non-child credit both expire at the end of 2025, unless further extended by the Congress at that time.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

JAMES P COCO CPA January 2

The CTC is actually for children under 17, not 17 and under.. that would make the non-child tax $ 500 credit for dependents 17 and over, not over 17.

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Brian December 22

Regarding the new $500 Non-Child Dependent or Flexible Credit in the 2018 Tax Cut bill, is this credit not only for the 17-24 year old child who is a student and living at home, but also for the tax payer him/herself? For example a father who has an 18 year old daughter living at home and going to school. He files as Head of Household and will he claim 1 $500 credit for his daughter only or will he also claim himself as a dependent and have 2 $500 credits totaling $1000?
Another example is a married couple over 65 years old, are they able to claim 2 $500 credits on their tax return if they are still living in their own home? Or do they not qualify for the new $500 flexible credit?

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John December 28

This is a very good question and I have been searching for that as well. If the point of these $500 credits is because we lose the personal exemptions, then why wouldn’t self and spouse apply as well?

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CJ Crock December 29

The credit will only apply to the non-child dependent (not the taxpayer). Though the taxpayer was entitled to an exemption under previous law, they were not considered a dependent. So in your example of a father filing as Head of Househild with his student daughter over 17 living with him, he would be entitled to a $500 credit joe her but nothing for himself.

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