Child-Care Tax Breaks for Working Parents

Working parents may be able use their flexible spending account along with the child and dependent care credit to save on taxes when paying for child care.

Question: I used my dependent care flexible spending account at work to pay $5,000 of my children’s day-care expenses. But with two kids under age 5, our total child-care bills in 2018 were much more than that. Can I take the dependent care tax credit for our additional child-care expenses?

Answer: You won’t be able to take the child and dependent care credit for all of your extra expenses, but you may be able to use the credit for up to $1,000 of those costs.

Subscribe to Kiplinger’s Personal Finance

Be a smarter, better informed investor.

Save up to 74%

Sign up for Kiplinger’s Free E-Newsletters

Profit and prosper with the best of expert advice on investing, taxes, retirement, personal finance and more - straight to your e-mail.

Profit and prosper with the best of expert advice - straight to your e-mail.

Sign up

To continue reading this article
please register for free

This is different from signing in to your print subscription

Why am I seeing this? Find out more here

Kimberly Lankford
Contributing Editor, Kiplinger's Personal Finance

As the "Ask Kim" columnist for Kiplinger's Personal Finance, Lankford receives hundreds of personal finance questions from readers every month. She is the author of Rescue Your Financial Life (McGraw-Hill, 2003), The Insurance Maze: How You Can Save Money on Insurance -- and Still Get the Coverage You Need (Kaplan, 2006), Kiplinger's Ask Kim for Money Smart Solutions (Kaplan, 2007) and The Kiplinger/BBB Personal Finance Guide for Military Families. She is frequently featured as a financial expert on television and radio, including NBC's Today Show, CNN, CNBC and National Public Radio.