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GOP Tax Bill Would Eliminate Adoption Credit

by Countable | 11.8.17

What’s the story?

Currently, those adopting a child receive a one-time credit of $13,570 per child.

The House GOP tax bill would eliminate this adoption tax credit.

The credit is meant to help offset the cost of adoption, which can be quite hefty: a survey by Adoptive Families magazine found that the average family spent about $34,000 on an independent adoption and around $40,000 to adopt through an agency.

Various groups are criticizing the proposal to eliminate the adoption credit, including religious organizations and pro-life advocates. Even some House Republicans have questioned the move, with Rep. Mark Walker (R-NC) tweeting:

But Rep. Kevin Brady (R-TX), the chief writer of the House GOP tax overhaul plan - and the father of two adopted sons - defended the cut, saying:

"This credit is not working."

Why does it matter?

Brady told the Washington Post that the Republican tax plan is about "giving families more in their paychecks, especially the middle-class families that are crucial for adoption."

But Russell Moore, president of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, tweeted:

Which prompted Nebraska GOP Sen. Ben Sasse to tweet in response:

Lauren Arnold, executive director of the Adoption Exchange, expressed concerns that without the tax credit, many families won’t be able to afford adoption.

"What’s at stake here is the child who’s not going to be adopted because there’s not as much of an incentive or it’s too much of a financial burden for a family to undertake that task," Arnold told CBS4 Denver.

According to Arnold, the adoption credit actually saves taxpayers money: "Every child that ages out of foster care without a permanent home costs us as a state, a system, about $300,000 per child. So it’s pretty significant the small amount of the tax credit can offset a huge cost to the state."

There are currently 112,000 children in the U.S. waiting to be adopted.

On Tuesday, the National Right to Life Committee (NRLC) sent a letter to members of the House, outlining its objections to the cut:

"Adoption affirms the unborn child’s right to life, allowing each baby to enter the world as a blessing for another family… National Right to Life believes that Congress ought to remove financial barriers to adoption, not create them."

Brady, however, has continued to defend the elimination of the credit. During an event on Friday hosted by Politico, he told the crowd:

"There are tough choices, when you look at medical expenses, student loan, the adoption tax credit, something near and dear to me. These are tough calls and the call is this:

"Do we want a tax code that has special provisions you may use once in your life or do we want a tax code that lowers rates and you get help every year of your life?”

What do you think?

Do you agree with Brady that the adoption "credit is not working"? Or is slashing the credit going to hurt adoption rates? Should the GOP reinstate the adoption credit? Is pro-adoption, pro-life? Hit Take Action, tell your reps, then tell your fellow citizens below.

— Josh Herman

Related Reading

(Photo Credit: SolStock / iStockphoto)

Countable

Written by Countable

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(59)
  • Mark
    11/08/2017
    ···

    It’s hard to believe that the GOP is strongly against both birth control and abortion, now they want to remove incentives for people who actually want to help give unwanted babies a home. If you’re not for prevention then you should damn sure help with the results. 18 years after Roe V Wade crime dropped 30% nation wide as a result. With the complete unwillingness of congress to reign in guns we could be heading towards an unimaginable nightmare. With no birth control no abortion no adoption can you imagine what our world would look like in 18-20 years. This is not Science fiction. Our whole way of life will change and not in a positive way.

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  • Rachel
    11/08/2017
    ···

    So logical. No abortion for anyone. No tax credit for adopting. Save the unborn but fuck ‘em once they’re here.

    Like (22)
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  • Michael777
    11/08/2017
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    Republican Logic: "We must protect the unborn so we can then screw them over once they're born!"

    Like (17)
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  • Ticktock
    11/08/2017
    ···

    Leave it up to the Republicans to weaken the support of the weakest amongst us. Now only the richest can afford to adopt. The Republicans are reserving the best things in life for themselves and the rich. The best potential parents aren’t always Republican nor are the rich and the desire to be a parent is often the best motivating factor. This deduction needs to be preserved because it doesn’t begin to pay for the care required to raise a child but it might make the legal fees more manageable.

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  • David
    11/08/2017
    ···

    So the GOP opposes abortion and an alternative (adoption). Does anybody else see a problem with this stance? Plus they oppose contraception. What is wrong with these people?

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  • Sheryl
    11/08/2017
    ···

    The Republicans portray themselves as family-friendly Christians. This has been a ruse to grab votes in the south. I’m adopting a child and have already spent over $5000 just in attorney fees, which has not included all the money for court fees, filing fees, home studies and just making my home certifiable so that a child can live with me. I’ve had to buy safety equipment, fire extinguishers, carbon monoxide detectors and extra smoke detectors. So giving someone $13,000 in tax credit to adopt a child is a bargain. People like me don’t adopt children for the money. But imagine how much more I can give my adopted daughter with some $ in my pocket. Please keep this tax credit. It’s the right thing to do.

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  • Tyler
    11/08/2017
    ···

    I am your constituent and I am asking you to save the Adoption Tax Credit. The recently unveiled tax reform legislation in the House would eliminate the Adoption Tax Credit. I ask that you oppose eliminating the Adoption Tax Credit and speak with Congressional leaders and your colleagues and urge them to preserve and strengthen the Adoption Tax Credit in tax reform legislation. In addition to saving the Adoption Tax Credit, Congress should demonstrate its commitment to children and families by making the Adoption Tax Credit refundable. The Adoption Tax Credit has helped tens of thousands of parents afford adoption, making it possible for them to provide children with loving, permanent families. Without the Adoption Tax Credit, many families will face a financial burden that may make adoption impossible. When there are such barriers to adoption, many children never find the forever family they need. You and your staff can learn more about the importance of the Adoption Tax Credit, including legislation to support which makes it refundable, and the children and families it helps at http://www.AdoptionTaxCredit.org. On behalf of the countless children waiting to be adopted in our state and across the country, and the many thousands of families who stand to benefit from the Adoption Tax Credit, thank you for your attention to this important issue.

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  • Kim
    11/08/2017
    ···

    This is just cruel. First Reps want to limit birth control and then not help adopted children’s families? Please support maintaining this tax credit!

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  • RadicalModerate
    11/08/2017
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    Eliminating the adoption tax credit could actually cost tax payers much much more in the long term.The aim of this measure is therefore at best an attempt to kick the tax burden down the road in favor of short term tax relief for the rich. And at worst a malicious attack on the disadvantaged. Probably both.

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  • Brian
    11/08/2017
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    Once again the Republican Party proves itself the party of hate

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  • burrkitty
    11/08/2017
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    It's so screamingly obvious that the GOP only love themselves and money. They also clearly hate women and children. Sickening.

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  • Chuck
    11/08/2017
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    Rep Knight this bill is anti family in so many ways. Show some courage. Stand up for your constituents vote NO against this corporation tax cut bill

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  • Christopher
    11/08/2017
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    As the parent of an adopted child the tax credit was invaluable to help address the costs of adoption. In what world would the author of the GOP plan think this was not beneficial; where aid the empirical studies and statistics that defend this policy change? Like so much about this bill, it is pure fiction when it was written in the middle of the night. It’s time to send this bill back to the house to readdress these decisions in the wake of these discoveries.

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  • Corina
    11/08/2017
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    The answer should be to make adoption less expensive, but if that isn’t going to happen at least increase the tax incentive, don’t decrease it. This makes no sense. If I’m irresponsible and get pregnant with a baby I don’t want, the government will provide healthcare for me and my unborn baby if I can’t afford it and pay to take care of the kid in foster care if I give it up. But, if I want to adopt a child who needs a loving parent, I must pay a huge amount to get the privilege to love and financially support the child myself. That is just crazy.

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  • John
    11/08/2017
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    Pure Republican bullcrap. Ban abortion, discourage birth control pills, then now tax the adoption process which is way too expensive as it is. They should be thinking about how to facilitate adoption. Or do they believe that 16 year olds and above are going to give up sex even if their own 60 - 75 year olds can’t stop? Enough of this party and their blatant hypocrisy. Legislate morality, but make sure it doesn’t cost us anything.

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  • Karen
    11/08/2017
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    Ive been saying right along that Pro-life folks should be required to be Pro-pay-for-that-child-to-HAVE-a-life or be required to adopt an unwanted child. They have no compassion for unwanted children and feel no moral obligation towards them.

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  • Gerald
    11/08/2017
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    Any tax cuts in a time of record deficits is ridiculous. However, after they go into effect, we will begin to hear about saving social security through tough measures. They will add the deduction back. Why not? They will just charge it and cut a social program later.

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  • Nicholas
    11/08/2017
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    This is ridiculous! Please make sure this doesn’t pass. Let’s not hurt the adoption process.

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  • Cindylen
    11/08/2017
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    It seems very shortsighted to eliminate a tax credit for those who adopt children in the nation. I hate to think of it in purely financial terms, but consider the cost to the state of a single child growing up as a ward of the state, consider the cost of a single child aging out of the system, no longer having the support system of a family. Seems like it would be far less expensive to have those children in stable families as soon as they are able. Keep the credit.

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  • Terry
    11/08/2017
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    How about reduce the cost through less regulations and greed by these agencies ?

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