May 15, 2019

Warren and Ernst Introduce Bipartisan, Bicameral Bill to Assist Family Caregivers

Credit for Caring Act would provide up to a $3,000 tax credit to working family caregivers for qualified expenses

Washington, DC -- United States Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) joined Senator Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), along with their Democratic and Republican colleagues in the Senate and the House of Representatives, on a bipartisan, bicameral bill, the Credit for Caring Act, which supports family caregivers across the country.

Senators Michael Bennet (D-Colo.) and Shelley Moore Capito (R-W. Va.) are cosponsoring the bipartisan legislation in the Senate, and U.S. Representatives Tom Reed (R-N.Y.) and Linda Sánchez (D-Calif.) are introducing a similar bill in the House. 

"Millions of Americans care for loved ones who are ill or have serious medical conditions, often taking time off of work or juggling work, care, and other family responsibilities," said Senator Warren. "Washington should be fighting for these families, which is why I am calling on Congress to pass this modest tax credit to make life just a little easier for them."

"Iowa is home to over 300,000 family caregivers. Many of these individuals are juggling their own full-time or part-time employment while also selflessly caring for a loved one. Our bipartisan bill recognizes the additional financial responsibilities placed on our family caregivers and would provide an avenue of relief and support for these hardworking folks in Iowa and across the country," said Senator Joni Ernst.

"AARP is pleased to endorse the Credit for Caring Act and appreciates the bipartisan leadership of the bill's Senate and House sponsors to support family caregivers," said Nancy LeaMond, AARP Chief Advocacy and Engagement Officer. "Nationwide, 40 million family caregivers are assisting loved ones so they can stay in their homes and communities. In 2016, family caregivers spent an average of 20 percent of their income, or nearly $7,000, on care-related expenses. The Credit for Caring Act would provide some much-needed financial relief to eligible family caregivers. We look forward to working with the bill's sponsors and Congress to enact this important legislation." 

The Credit for Caring Act would provide working family caregivers with a nonrefundable tax credit up to $3,000 to assist with out-of-pocket expenses related to caregiving. This tax credit for caregivers can be used toward expenses such as transportation, home modifications to accommodate a family member, medication management services, and training or education for the caregiver.

About the Credit for Caring Act:
  • Creates up to a $3,000 nonrefundable tax credit adjusted for inflation for family caregivers.
  • Applies to incurred family caregiving expenses greater than $2,000.
  • Qualified care recipients must have been certified by a health care practitioner to be in need of long-term care for at least 180 consecutive days.
  • Eligibility is limited to a caregiver of a qualified care recipient who must pay for caregiving expenses and has earned income in excess of $7,500.
  • Credit is phased out when income exceeds $150,000 for joint filers or $75,000 for individual filers.

Family Caregivers in Massachusetts:
  • According to AARP, there are more than 844,000 family caregivers in Massachusetts.
  • AARP also found that the unpaid contributions of family caregivers in Massachusetts are valued at $11.6 billion annually.

Senator Warren first introduced the bill with her Senate colleagues in April 2016 and reintroduced the legislation in May 2017.