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Some of America’s 48 million family caregivers would get much needed financial assistance under the Credit for Caring Act, introduced last month in the US Senate and House of Representatives. The bipartisan bill would provide up to $5,000 federal tax credit for eligible working family caregivers. This could help defray the costs families spend each year out of pocket.
Family caregivers are the unrecognized backbone of the long term care system. The job can be overwhelming, exhausting and a financial challenge. A family caregiver provides unpaid care each year, doing everything from helping prepare meals and paying bills, to assisting with medication and general activities of daily living. Some of this is in addition to an outside caregiver coming into the home for a number of hours each day. The goal is to keep people living independently in their own homes and communities. A whopping 61% of these caregivers do all this while holding down a job.
The tax credit would give eligible family caregivers who work a 30% credit for qualified expenses they paid above $2000. This credit could help offset the costs of services like home care aides, adult day care, home modifications like ramps and smart home technology, and even respite care.
The legislation may not only help individual caregivers make ends meet, but it could boost the economy, by increasing the U.S. gross domestic product by and additional $1.7 trillion by 2030. Contact your local representative and tell them you support this bill!