Extended Filing Deadline - May 17   |   Third Stimulus Payment   |   Why eFile?

Head of Household Filing Status 2020, 2021

The 2020 eFile Tax Season starts on January 1, 2021. Prepare and eFile 2020 Taxes due on April 15, 2021. Prepare to prepare with this tax-related checklist.

Head Of
Household
  • Firstly, what is a HOH?
  • Could you be a HOH?
  • Do you qualify as a HOH?
  • Or, do you want to be a HOH?

Is a HOH someone who dates everyone but you? Something Santa Claus says three times? Is it a river named after a Native American tribe? How about an expression commonly used after "Heave?"

It might be all of those things... but the HOH we're talking about is a Head of Household. It's a great tax return filing status that can pay off when you e-File your tax return!

Attention: Compared to the single filing status, the Head of Household filing status will get taxpayers get lower tax rates and a higher standard deduction, plus qualify more easily for tax credits. Many singles with dependents qualify as Heads of Household - use this free DEPENDucator to see who you can claim on your 2020 Return. Additionally, other unmarried people and, with some exception, legally married people with dependents might qualify as Head of Household. Generally, however, to qualify to file or e-File as a Head of Household, you have to be unmarried and you have to support a dependent or qualifying relative.

Exceptions:

  • If you live apart from your spouse and meet certain requirements - even if you aren't divorced or legally separated - you might file as head of household. Should you qualify to file as head of household instead of as married filing separately, your standard deduction will be higher. Plus, your tax amount overall may be lower, and you might be able to claim the earned income credit.
  • Even if you were married at the end of a tax year, and one spouse is a US citizen or resident alien of the US and the other spouse is a nonresident alien, you can choose to treat the nonresident as a US resident. This also includes cases if one of you is a US nonresident alien at the beginning of the tax year, but a resident alien at the end of the tax year while the other other is a nonresident alien at the end of the year. If you treat your nonresident alien spouse as a US resident alien, you may be able to use head of household filing status. Please use the tool below. As Head of Household, you must pay more than half the cost of maintaining a household for certain dependents or relatives other than your nonresident alien spouse.

HOHucator Tool

Can You Use the Head of Household Filing Status?

Start HOHucator

Did You Know that eFile.com is up to 60% less than TurboTax?
Dare to Compare Now

Are You a Head of Household?
Were you married as of December 31 of the tax year?
Note: Even if you were legally married, you still might qualify as Head of Household if you meet these requirements.
Did you pay more than 50% of the cost of keeping up a home for the entire year?
So far, so good! Now, let's see if you have a Qualifying Person. Answer the remaining questions about your potential Qualifying Person. Is this person your IRS Qualifying Child?
You're not sure if this person is a Qualifying Child? No problem, let's find out right now.
Is this person a descendant of any of the above?
Did the person live with you for more than 6 months of the tax year?
Was the person under age 19 by Dec. 31 of the tax year?
Was the person under age 24 and a full time student?
Is the person permanently and totally disabled?
Did the person provide more than 50% of their own support during the tax year?
Are you, the taxpayer, the dependent of another taxpayer?
Is the person married, and did they file a joint return with their spouse?
Is the person (and their spouse) required to file a tax return?
If the person and their spouse file separate returns, would they owe taxes?
Did the person and their spouse file a return only to claim a refund?
Is the person a U.S. Citizen, U.S. resident alien, U.S. national, or a resident of Canada or Mexico?
Based on your answers, this person is not a Qualifying Child. You cannot claim them as a dependent unless they are a Qualifying Relative.
Based on your answers, you can claim this person as a dependent. They are considered a Qualifying Child.
If you are the taxpayer, is this person your IRS Qualifying Child?
Is the person single?
Is the person married AND can you claim them as a tax exemption?
Is the person your mother or father AND can you claim them as a tax exemption?
Is this person a Qualifying Relative AND are they related to you?
You're not sure if this person is a Qualifying Relative? No problem, let's find out right now. If you are the taxpayer, is this person:
Did this person live with you for the ENTIRE tax year?
Did the person have a gross income of less than $4,050?
Did you provide over 50% (more than half) of the total support for the person?
Is this person a Qualifying Child for you or anyone else?

TIP: If the person is your girlfriend or boyfriend's child, the child lived with you ALL year, and the child's parent is NOT required to file a tax return, answer "No" to this question.
Are you, the taxpayer, a dependent of another taxpayer?
Is the person married, and did they file a joint return with their spouse?
Is the person (and their spouse, if married) required to file a return?
If the person and their spouse filed separate returns, would they owe taxes?
Did the person and their spouse file a return only to claim a refund?
Is the person a U.S. Citizen, U.S. resident alien, U.S. national, or a resident of Canada or Mexico
Based on your answers, this person is not a Qualifying Relative. You cannot claim them as a dependent.
Based on your answers, you can claim this person as a dependent. They are considered a Qualifying Relative.
Is this person a Qualifying Relative AND are they related to you?
No. You do not qualify as Head of Household. However, if you meet these requirements, you still might qualify as Head of Household.
Use our STATucator to help you determine the correct filing status for you.
Email Me My Results, Details We will not share your email with anybody, You can unsubscribe at any time.
IT = Income Taxes
Start an Income Tax Return for Free Now to See Your Personalized Results. IT's Free to ViewIT Before You eFileIT.
Yes. Based on your answers, you do qualify for Head of Household status.
Email Me My Results, Details We will not share your email with anybody, You can unsubscribe at any time.
IT = Income Taxes
Start an Income Tax Return for Free Now to See Your Personalized Results. IT's Free to ViewIT Before You eFileIT.

Who is a Qualifying Person?

It can be tricky to figure out if someone is your Qualifying Person. If you have a dependent, they might or might not also count as your Qualifying Person. A dependent is not always a Qualifying Person and you don't necessarily have to claim a Qualifying Person as a dependent.

Confused? Don't worry, we've made it easy for you! Just use the free Head of Household tool on this page. Then, prepare and e-file with eFile.com and let the tax app select the best filing status for you.

How to File as Head of Household

If you live apart from your spouse and meet certain requirements - even if you aren't divorced or legally separated - you might file as head of household.  In the case you qualify as HOH instead of as married filing separately, your standard deduction will be higher. Also, your tax may be lower, and you may be able to claim the earned income credit.

Find out how to how to file as Head of Household and see detailed requirements to file as HOH.

Need help? Ask FREE Tax Questions!

Start Your 2020 IRS Tax Return Now
Already have an eFile.com account? Sign In

ReviewIT

WatchIT