|IF the person is your...||AND...||THEN that person is...|
|qualifying child (such as your son, daughter, or grandchild who lived with you more than half the year and meets certain other tests)2||he or she is single||a qualifying person, whether or not you can claim the person as a dependent.|
|he or she is married and you can claim him or her as a dependent||a qualifying person.|
|he or she is married and you can't claim him or her as a dependent||not a qualifying person.3|
|qualifying relative4 who is your father or mother||you can claim him or her as a dependent5||a qualifying person.6|
|you can't claim him or her as a dependent||not a qualifying person.|
|qualifying relative4 other than your father or mother||he or she lived with you more than half the year, and you can claim him or her as a dependent, and is one of the following: son, daughter, stepchild, foster child, or a descendant of any of them; your brother, sister, half-brother, half-sister or a son or daughter of any of them; an ancestor or sibling of your father or mother; or stepbrother, stepsister, stepfather, stepmother, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, father-in-law, mother-in-law, brother-in-law or sister-in-law5||a qualifying person.|
|he or she did not live with you more than half the year||not a qualifying person.|
|he or she is not related to you in one of the ways listed above and is your qualifying relative only because he or she lived with you all year as a member of your household (for example, a companion or friend)||not a qualifying person.|
|you can’t claim him or her as a dependent||not a qualifying person.|
1 A person cannot qualify more than one taxpayer to use the head of household filing status for the year.
2 The term "qualifying child" is covered in "Who is considered a qualified dependent?". Note: If you are a noncustodial parent, the term "qualifying child" for head of household filing status doesn’t include a child who is your dependent only because of the rules described in the Children of Divorced or Separated Parents table. If you are the custodial parent and those rules apply, the child generally is your qualifying child for head of household filing status even though the child isn't a qualifying child who you can claim as a dependent.
3 This person is a qualifying person if the only reason you can't claim him or her as a dependent is that you can be claimed as a dependent on someone else's return.
4 The term "qualifying relative" is covered in "Who is considered a qualified dependent?".
5 If you can claim a person as a dependent only because of a multiple support agreement, that person isn't a qualifying person.
6 You are eligible to file as head of household even if your parent, whom you can claim as a dependent, does not live with you. You must pay more than half the cost of keeping up a home that was the main home for the entire year for your parent. This test is met if you pay more than half the cost of keeping your parent in a rest home or home for the elderly.