New Adoption Credit Amount

Updated: Nov 30, 2019

For the tax year 2019, the adoption credit for the adoption of a child with special needs is $14,080 regardless of the actual amount the taxpayer paid.  The maximum credit allowed for other non-special needs adoptions is the amount of qualified adoption expenses up to $14,080. The maximum exclusion from income for benefits under an employee adoption assistance program is $14,080.  

In 2019, the credit begins phasing out for taxpayers with a MAGI in excess of $211,160. It is completely phased out for taxpayers with a MAGI of $251,160.   In 2018 the phaseout range was from $207,140 to 247,140.  The adoption credit is a nonrefundable credit, figured on Form 8839, then transferred to Schedule 3 (Form 1040), line 54.

Qualified adoption expenses include:

  • Adoption fees

  • Attorney fees

  • Court costs

  • Travel expenses (including meals and lodging) while away from home

  • Re-adoption expenses relating to the adoption of a foreign child

Jason and Mary adopted Ben, a 5-month-old boy, in 2019.  Ben is a special needs child.  Their qualified adoption expenses were $5,680.  Jason and Mary can claim $14,080 adoption credit on their 2019 joint tax return. 


Cathy Fisher

Common Cents Bookkeeping and Tax Preparation

Serving Henderson, NC, Buncombe County, Polk County, Transylvania County


P: 828-595-2835

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