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NCFA lends support to bipartisan tax bill to reduce financial barriers to adoption

ALEXANDRIA, VA, June 9, 2021 – National Council For Adoption (NCFA) supports the passage of S. 1156 and H.R. 3031, the Adoption Tax Credit Refundability Act of 2021 (ATCRA). The proposed legislation strengthens the current Adoption Tax Credit and offsets the cost of adoption, ensuring lower-income and middle-income families do not have a financial barrier to adoption. Overall, the bill would reduce the financial burden of both the adoption process and post-adoption care for children with special needs.

“If the Adoption Tax Credit is going to reach its full potential to support permanent, loving homes for all children, it has to be refundable,” said Chuck Johnson, President and CEO of NCFA.

There are over 122,000 children and youth waiting to be adopted from U.S. foster care. Last year over 20,000 youth aged out of the child welfare system without a permanent, loving family. And yet, in its current version, the Adoption Tax Credit benefits only a portion of the hardworking, qualified families who would be willing to adopt if they had the financial resources to provide for the medical care and specialized supports waiting children often need. As a result, far too many children are left without a permanent, loving family across the U.S. and around the world.

In 2010 and 2011, the credit was refundable but was then rolled back into a nonrefundable tax credit. If Congress reinstates the refundability, it will mark a permanent and long-awaited step toward mitigating the financial barrier of adoption.

“Lower-income families who are otherwise qualified and able to parent a child waiting in the U.S. foster care system need the full benefits of the tax credit to overcome the financial burden of adopting and parenting children whose special needs and/or experiences with traumatic circumstances will require ongoing therapeutic services, medical care, and other supports,” Johnson explained.

The ATCRA would substantially strengthen the tax credit by expanding the number of qualified families and qualified adoption-related expenses, providing vital resources to adoptive families and reducing the number of waiting children in foster care.

NCFA believes that all children, everywhere, should have the opportunity to thrive in a permanent, loving home. That means ensuring that barriers to the adoption process and to the post-adoption care of a child, must be reduced and removed wherever possible.

Johnson emphasized the urgency of the issue. “Year after year we watch as thousands of young people age out of the system without a family, and millions of children around the world languish in institutions or other vulnerable circumstances. Practical solutions are needed to change the trajectory of this issue. This is the right bill, at the right time, for the right reasons and we urge Congress to pass this bill with expediency.”

NCFA applauds the work of the original co-sponsors including Representatives Davis (IL-07), Walorski (IN-02), Bass (CA-37), and Bacon (NE-02), and Senators Casey (PA), Blunt (MO),  Van Hollen (MD), Wicker (MS), Gillibrand (NY), Boozman (AR), Klobuchar (MN), Hawley (MO), Duckworth (IL), Inhofe (OK), Rosen (NV), Risch (ID), Warren (MA), Rounds (SD), Merkley (OR) and Lankford (OK).


About National Council For Adoption

Founded in 1980, NCFA is a leading authoritative voice for adoption and is passionately committed to the belief that every child deserves to thrive in a nurturing permanent family. NCFA’s nonprofit work promotes a culture of adoption through education, research, advocacy and collaboration that aims to serve children, expectant and birth parents, adoptees, adoptive families, and adoption professionals.

MEDIA CONTACT: Kristen Hamilton, 571.446.4690,