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Watch out for these Common EITC Errors!

Errors can delay your refund or we could end up denying your EITC claim. Watch out for these common errors when claiming EITC:

Consequences of Errors on Your EITC Returns

Avoid an audit, additional tax, penalties or interest by making sure all the information on your tax return is complete and correct. There are consequences for filing your returns with errors whether you made by mistake or did on purpose. Find out more about the consequences of errors on your EITC returns here

If you pay someone to prepare your return, that person and the firm the person works for has some additional responsibility to make sure your return is correct. Expect your preparer, whether you pay or it’s free, to ask you a great deal of questions to make sure your return is correct. For more information on choosing a preparer, see our page “IRS Advice on How to Choose a Tax Preparer.” For more information on the preparer’s responsibilities, see our article, “Consequences of Not Meeting Your Due Diligence Requirements."

Can You Support Your Claim of a Child?

If we pick your EITC claim for an exam based on the child you claim, we ask for proof that the child is your qualifying child. Or, if you and another person claim the same child, we may ask you to send proof. The following are some of the documents you can use to support your claim:

Warning: Don’t send any of the items listed unless we ask for them and then only send copies not the originals.

Proof of Relationship:

  • Birth certificates or other official documents of birth that show your relationship to the child
  • Marriage certificates showing how you are related to the child
  • Letter from the authorized adoption agency
  • Letter from the authorized child placement center or a court document showing the placement

Proof for full-time student:

  • Copies of official school records showing:
    • Child’s address of record (that must match your address)
    • The child was a full-time student for at least five months of the tax year (the months don’t have to be consecutive) and you may need more than one school record
    • The dates the child attended the school

Proof of Residency (you may have to send more than one of the following to show your child lived with you for more than half the year):

  • Copies of school (no report cards) medical or social services records
  • Letter on official letterhead from school, a healthcare or medical provider, social service agency, placement agency official, employer, Indian tribal official, landlord or property manager or a place of worship that shows:
    • The name of your child’s parent or guardian
    • Your child’s address matching your own
    • Dates the writer knows the child lived with you

  • Daycare records or a letter from your day care provider (if the daycare provider is related to you, you must have at least one other record or letter that shows proof)

More EITC Topics


Do I Qualify for EITC?


How Do I Claim EITC?


I Received a Letter from IRS about EITC, What Should I Do?


Other Useful Links



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Page Last Reviewed or Updated: 20-Nov-2014