Taxpayers are entitled to claim an exemption for dependent children they supported at any time during the tax year.
So, if a baby is born at on December 31st, the parents can claim the exemption even if the child was only a dependent for one minute of the year.
This is precisely what happened to Matt and Maria Lenius of Peoria, Illinois.
Maria gave birth to the last American baby born in 2008 – a girl they named Melina. She arrived one week early, just in the nick of time for the Lenius’s to claim a 2008 personal exemption of $3,400.00 plus a child tax credit of up to $1,000.00.
Congratulations, Matt and Maria. I’ll smoke a Cohiba in your honor?
Post Script: Rumor has it that the Lenius’s tax advisor, Max Shelter, was in the delivery room exhorting Maria, at the top of his tax lungs, to “push! push!”