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Click on a topic to learn more about current adoption-related legislative efforts. Sign up for NCFA's email updates here.

The Adoption Tax Credit Vulnerable Children and Families Act The Child Citizenship Act Human Rights Reporting on Unparented Children Foster Care Bill of Rights Congressional Coalition on Adoption‚Äč

Adoption Tax Credit

NCFA has been a champion of the adoption tax credit for decades. A refundable adoption tax credit makes the greatest impact for families with less tax liability, who might benefit most from these funds. However, as Congress considers tax reform, the adoption tax credit is at risk of being eliminated entirely. There are two different legislative proposals important to the future of the ATC:

  1. Saving the credit. During the coming months, Congress is expected to advance major tax reform legislation. Both the House Majority “Better Way” plan and the recent outline for President Trump’s tax reform plan eliminate almost all tax credits. Without the adoption tax credit, many families will face an increased financial burden that may make adoption impossible.
  2. Making the adoption tax credit refundable. In April 2017, U.S. Senators Roy Blunt (R-MO) and Bob Casey (D-PA) introduced the Adoption Tax Credit Refundability Act (S. 937) in the U.S. Senate. In May, Representatives Diane Black (R-TN-06) and Danny Davis (D-IL-07) introduced the companion bill (H.R. 2476) in the U.S. House.

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Vulnerable Children and Families Act of 2017

Every day millions of children all over the world are living without families. Children in institutional care are some of the most vulnerable in the world. They are more likely to experience violence, sexual abuse, and suicide than children living in family based care. Once these children age out of institutional care, they are more likely to experience violence, incarceration, and unemployment. The Vulnerable Children and Families Act (S.1178 and H.R.2532) strategically strengthens the United States' international child welfare and intercountry adoption efforts.

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Child Citizenship Act

The Child Citizenship Act of 2000 (CCA) granted some foreign-born children adopted by U.S. citizen parents their U.S. citizenship automatically upon entry into the United States. However, this act excluded some international adoptees. Many adopted individuals who entered the U.S. as children, either on a non-automatic visa type or before the CCA was enacted, later discover they are not U.S. citizens or that they lack documentation to prove they are. Advocates can ask Congress to amend the Child Citizenship of 2000 to:

  1. Correct the past and give citizenship to all those brought to live in the U.S. through intercountry adoption, but left without citizenship.
  2. Ensure automatic citizenship for every full and final adoption by a U.S. citizen

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Human Rights Reporting on Unparented Children

Do you believe that every child around the world has an inherent right to a family? Introduced in 2017, S. 1177 and H.R. 2643 would transform how the U.S. and other countries prioritize children’s rights and promote their best interests. Specifically, this legislation amends the law governing the U.S. Department of State’s annual reports on human rights violations, requiring them to consider reporting on the shutting down of international adoption as a violation of unparented children’s right to family.

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Foster Care Bill of Rights

What rights do kids in foster care really have? State-level foster care guidelines generally protect a child’s basic human rights to food, shelter, and care, but often fail to take into consideration further rights related to the unique vulnerabilities of children in care. We need that village they say it takes to raise a child to come together and demand that these children’s rights be clearer, and then, that they be consistently and vigorously upheld.

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Congressional Coalition on Adoption

Ask your Members of Congress to join the Congressional Coalition on Adoption, if they haven't already! The CCA is the largest bicameral caucus in Congress. Once your Member joins the CCA, they'll have access to adoption-related information throughout the year. It's an easy way for them to stay up-to-date on changes in the field of adoption, as well as pieces of legislation that may help children living outside of family care. Here's what you need to know about the CCA.