If you are caring for a parent, spouse or child with a disability, you’re not alone. Roughly 40 million Americans are in the same boat, including AARP’s chief advocacy and engagement officer, Nancy A. LeaMond. She recently posted a blog entry titled “Bipartisan Family Caregiver Tax Credit Introduced in U.S. Congress” (April, 2016) on AARP’s Where We Stand blog.
A bipartisan bill, called the Credit for Caring Act, was introduced in the U.S. House and Senate earlier this year, and aims to help family caregivers stay in the workforce and ease some of their financial burdens. Many caregivers have to juggle part-time or full-time jobs with their caregiving responsibilities, often jeopardizing their own financial security in the process.
The proposed legislation would give a federal tax credit of up to $3000 per year to eligible family caregivers who work and financially support a loved one. This credit could allow caregivers to take a hard-earned break or pay for home care while at work.
LeaMond makes the point that caregivers like her provide $470 billion in unpaid care each year, helping to avoid more expensive institutional care and saving taxpayers money. She encourages us to urge our U.S. senators and representatives to cosponsor the Credit for Caring Act.
Read more about the Credit for Caring Act here. The PDF discusses why a family caregiver tax credit is sorely needed—pointing out that many caregivers use their own savings, or cut back on their own healthcare and retirement saving in order to pay for caregiving expenses.