Joint Return Test

Definition of 'Joint Return Test'


One of the tests administered by the IRS that potential dependents must pass in order to be claimed as such by another taxpayer. The joint return test stipulates that no dependent can file a joint return with a spouse and still be claimed as a dependent on someone else's return, such as that of a parent or guardian. There are, however, exceptions to this rule.

Investopedia explains 'Joint Return Test'


A taxpayer filing a joint return can be claimed as a dependent under two separate exceptions. One is when neither the dependent nor his or her spouse is required to file a tax return, except to claim a refund. The other is when neither the dependent nor his or her spouse would owe any tax if he or she were to file separately instead of jointly. In these cases, another taxpayer may claim this person as a dependent.


Filed Under:

comments powered by Disqus
Hot Definitions
  1. Federal Reserve Note

    The most accurate term used to describe the paper currency (dollar bills) circulated in the United States. These Federal Reserve Notes are printed by the U.S. Treasury at the instruction of the Federal Reserve member banks, who also act as the clearinghouse for local banks that need to increase or reduce their supply of cash on hand.
  2. Benchmark Bond

    A bond that provides a standard against which the performance of other bonds can be measured. Government bonds are almost always used as benchmark bonds. Also referred to as "benchmark issue" or "bellwether issue".
  3. Market Capitalization

    The total dollar market value of all of a company's outstanding shares. Market capitalization is calculated by multiplying a company's shares outstanding by the current market price of one share. The investment community uses this figure to determine a company's size, as opposed to sales or total asset figures.
  4. Oil Reserves

    An estimate of the amount of crude oil located in a particular economic region. Oil reserves must have the potential of being extracted under current technological constraints. For example, if oil pools are located at unattainable depths, they would not be considered part of the nation's reserves.
  5. Joint Venture - JV

    A business arrangement in which two or more parties agree to pool their resources for the purpose of accomplishing a specific task. This task can be a new project or any other business activity. In a joint venture (JV), each of the participants is responsible for profits, losses and costs associated with it.
  6. Aggregate Risk

    The exposure of a bank, financial institution, or any type of major investor to foreign exchange contracts - both spot and forward - from a single counterparty or client. Aggregate risk in forex may also be defined as the total exposure of an entity to changes or fluctuations in currency rates.
Trading Center