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Grassroots Advocacy Campaign-The Adoption Tax Credit

Grassroots Advocacy Campaign

Key Message:  The ATC should be included in any comprehensive reform of the tax code. Members of Congress who are working on tax reform indicated that for a provision of the tax code to remain in place it should do one or all of the following three things: 1) grow the economy, 2) make the tax code fairer, and, 3) effectively promote an important policy objective. A refundable adoption tax credit does all three things.   Highlighted FAQ: How does the adoption tax credit benefit meet the stated goals of tax reform? •             The ATC Saves Money: A 2006 study cited by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Children’s Bureau found that “approximately $65,422 to $126,825 is saved for every child who is adopted rather than placed in long-term foster care.” These savings occur even if the adoptive families receive government support. Some savings accrue from the reduced need for direct child welfare services—foster care and court oversight are no longer required. •             A Refundable Credit Helps All Children Find Families: Without an adoption tax credit, some families may not be able to adopt a child from foster care. Nationally, nearly half (46 percent) of families adopting from foster care are at or below 200 percent of the poverty level. One-third of all adopted children live in families with annual household incomes at or below 200 percent of the poverty level, meaning many do not have a tax liability and cannot use a non-refundable tax credit.   Call to Action: Tax Staffer Outreach - In honor of tax day, use talking points from theATC Tax Reform Letter to make sure your Members of Congress are aware of how important the adoption tax credit really is and how it fits within the three goals outlined above. Rather than reaching out again generally, try to reach the staff member in each office who handles tax issues. Call the offices of your Members of Congress, explain that you are a constituent and ask for the name of the staff member who works on tax issues. Leave a voicemail and/or send an email to that person. Make sure you tell your story and talk about the importance of the credit to your family. If you can, also reach out to Members of the House Committee on Ways and Means and Senate Finance Committee to be sure they are also aware of these important facts.

Save The Adoption Tax Credit

Adoption Tax Credit Working Group Grass Roots Advocacy Campagin 

ALERT – BREAKING NEWS: Last Wednesday, February 26, Chairman Camp of the Ways and Means Committee released his much anticipated  tax reform proposal and it eliminates the adoption tax credit. This breaking news makes our advocacy efforts that much more critical. Now that an actual legislative proposal has suggested eliminating the credit altogether, we need to ensure that every single Member of Congress  hears from us about its importance. Members will only be compelled to fight for its protection if they hear real stories from all of you. Key Message: Outreach to your legislators is the only way to protect the adoption tax credit.  Members of Congress want to hear from you – their constituents – about what matters to you.  Legislators only need to hear from 20 constituents about an issue before it becomes important to them.  Remember, Members of Congress are people and oftentimes it is a personal story about why a law is needed that motivates them to act.  They also understand that they are there to represent the people of their district.  They want to know how a particular policy will affect those they are called to serve. Highlighted FAQ: When will Congress vote on the Adoption Tax Credit Refundability Act (H.R. 2144/S.1056)?
  • An individual vote on this bill is unlikely to happen. However, the adoption tax credit will remain part of the broader tax reform discussions and is now particularly vulnerable given the proposal to eliminate it. The more Congressional co-sponsors these bills have, the more likely the adoption tax credit will receive favorable attention in these discussions in Congress. Members of Congress are hearing daily from paid lobbyists about other tax related interests, and will have to make tough decisions about which tax policies are their ultimate priorities. Let’s not let the adoption tax credit become a victim because Members of Congress haven’t heard enough about its importance to their constituents! Don’t delay. Ask your Members of Congress to cosponsor H.R. 2144/S.1056 and share their responses here:
For more advocacy tips visit: Call to ActionInitial Emails to Your Members of Congress - Figure out who your three Members of Congress (2 Senators and 1 Representative) are by using and  Using their websites, figure out the best way to contact each of them (often it will be through an email or a form on their website). Email each of them and explain the importance of adoption and ask for their support in protecting the credit. Use our sample template letter(here) as a starting point, but be sure to personalize it. Speak from the heart and share your story about why the ATC is important to children, your family, or others in your life. Provide the link to  in your email so they can find additional information.    

The Adoption Tax Credit Working Group Executive Committee

American Academy of Adoption AttorneysAdopt America NetworkChristian Alliance for Orphans, Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute (Secretariat), Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption, Donaldson Adoption InstituteJoint Council on International Children’s Services, National Council For AdoptionNorth American Council on Adoptable Children, RESOLVE: The National Infertility AssociationShowHope, and Voice for Adoption