July 31, 2014

Congresswoman Lee Introduces Bill to Provide Financial Relief for Caregivers

WASHINGTON, DC - Yesterday, Congresswoman Barbara Lee (CA-13) introduced the Elder Care Tax Credit, a bill designed to ease the financial burden on the growing number of families with multi-generational care-giving responsibilities.

“As Americans live longer, more and more families are responsible for both young children and parents aging in place,” said Congresswoman Lee. “This ‘sandwich generation’ shoulders a heavy financial burden while receiving negligible government support. Most elderly relatives are not classified as ‘dependent’ under the tax code.”

“My Elder Care Tax Credit will give families more financial flexibility as they juggle work and care-giving responsibilities for aging relatives,” added Congresswoman Lee. “Caregivers would receive a credit worth up to $1,200 per year. This tax credit would be an important step in ensuring all families have the resources to adequately provide for care-giving expenses.” 

On average, caregivers spend $5,530 annually on the care of their aging relatives. As a result, many caregivers have reported cutting back on their own healthcare spending, or reducing hours at work, to provide their relatives with the care they need.

The Elder Care Tax Credit would build upon the existing Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit by offering financial support for qualified care expenses to families caring for aging relatives not defined as dependent. 

Appropriations Ranking Member, Congresswoman Nita Lowey (NY-17), Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (CT-03) and Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky (IL-09) are original cosponsors of the bill.