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If you paid child and dependent care expenses, but the individual care provider has not or will not provide their Social Security Number (SSN) to you, you may still be able to claim the Child and Dependent Care Credit if you show due diligence to obtain the information.

To access this section of the TaxAct program:

  1. From within your TaxAct return (Online or Desktop), click Federal. On smaller devices, click in the upper left-hand corner, then click Federal.
  2. Click Child and Dependent Care in the Federal Quick Q&A Topics menu, then click Yes.
  3. Click + Add Form 2441 Care Provider to create a new copy of the form or click Edit to review a form already created.
  4. Continue with the interview process to enter all of the appropriate information.
  5. On the screen titled We will start with your first care provider, select Person, then click Continue.
  6. On the screen titled Enter your care provider's information, enter your care provider's information, check This person would not provide their SSN, then click Continue.

If the provider refuses to provide you with his/her SSN, complete all the information you can and check this box. In order to claim the child and dependent care credit, you must show a serious and earnest effort to obtain the provider's SSN. You may do this by asking the provider to complete Form W-10 Dependent Care Provider’s Identification and Certification.

Checking this box will allow the provider information to flow to Federal Form 2441 Child and Dependent Care Expenses for purposes of calculating the credit. You will need to attach an explanation to the return regarding the due diligence taken in attempting to obtain the social security number. This explanation statement will be attached to the paper filed return.

Per IRS Instructions for Form 2441 Child and Dependent Care Expenses, on page 3:

Line 1

Complete columns (a) through (d) for each person or organization that provided the care. You can use Form W-10, Dependent Care Provider's Identification and Certification, or any other source listed in its instructions to get the information from the care provider. If you don't give correct or complete information, your credit (and exclusion, if applicable) may be disallowed unless you can show you used due diligence in trying to get the required information.

If you have more than two care providers, attach a statement to your return with the required information. Be sure to put your name and social security number (SSN) on the statement. Also, enter “See Attached” right above the Caution under line 1.

If you had neither a qualifying person nor any care providers for 2020, and you are filing Form 2441 only to report taxable income in Part III, enter “none” on line 1, column (a).

Due Diligence

You can show a serious and earnest effort (due diligence) to get the information by keeping in your records a Form W-10 completed by the care provider. Or you may keep one of the other sources of information listed in the instructions for Form W-10. If the provider doesn't give you the information, complete the entries you can on line 1. For example, enter the provider's name and address. Enter “See Attached Statement” in the columns for which you don't have the information. Then, attach a statement to your return explaining that the provider didn't give you the information you requested.

Note that any link in the information above is updated each year automatically and will take you to the most recent version of the document at the time it is accessed.


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