Proposed Illinois caregiver tax credit - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Proposed Illinois caregiver tax credit

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WSIL -- Family members who care for a loved one could get some relief next year. State lawmakers have joined with AARP, in hopes of passing a bill to provide a state income tax credit. 

Shelly Ebbert, Agency Director for Addus Homecare, says most caregivers make a commitment to a parent or grandparent to keep them at home and out of a nursing home as long as possible, but that commitment can be expensive. It includes everyday expenses and costly special needs. 

"Groceries, utilities, transportation, gas. Do they need to install a ramp, do they need to have grab bars in the bathroom, do they need to have a special kind of bed?," Ebbert she explains. 

In an effort to help, AARP and state lawmakers are working to pass HB 2974. The legislation calls for a state income tax credit of up to $1,500 for caregivers who take care of a family member who is at least 18 years of age, a resident of Illinois, and in need of assistance with one daily living activity.

Representative Marcus Evans, who co-sponsored the bill, says it covers an array of eligible expenses, "Adult services, transportation equipment, home modification and other expenses when caring for family." 

Although those expenses are likely more than $1,500 a year, Ebbert says the extra money would be helpful and similar to families who receive a tax credit for having young children. 

"This tax credit could support a family member in getting some respite care, or enough care for the week so that they can go to work for some amount of hours," she remarks. 

The bill calls for a yearly income limit of $75,000 for an individual and $150,000 for a couple.

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