Federal Adoption Tax Credit

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Since 2003, families adopting a “child with special needs” are eligible to claim a federal adoption tax credit without needing to incur or document “qualified adoption expenses.”

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Basically, a “child with special needs” is a U.S. foster child who receives monthly adoption assistance program (AAP) benefits. Families adopting children without special needs (i.e., private adoptions) are also eligible for the credit, but they must be able to document qualified adoption expenses. 

This document covers more information on the adoption tax credit.

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