When the time comes time to do your taxes, it really pays to be a parent.

"If you're supporting your kids and they're living at home, chances are you qualify to claim them as a dependent -- and those will help you save you on your taxes," says Eric Smith of the Internal Revenue Service.

Each child declared as a dependent can shave $3,950 off of your taxable income.

Smith says there's even more savings to be had for a middle-income family with a child under 17 years of age, via the Child Tax Credit.

"It's a credit of up to $1,000 and it will reduce your tax liability. And, if you're in a lower- to moderate-income range, it can actually be what we refer to in tax lingo as refundable," says Smith.

A person caring for an elderly parent and paying 50 percent of their living expenses can also claim the parent as a dependent.