TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — If you live in Georgia, getting pregnant now also means getting a tax deduction of $3,000 per child. The change to Florida’s northern neighbor’s tax code comes after a multi-year legal battle over Georgia’s House Bill 481, a fetal heartbeat law. Is it possible that legislation working through U.S. Congress will follow suit?
In late July, the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in favor of the state, building on federal court decisions as high as the U.S. Supreme Court. The June decision by SCOTUS to overturn Roe v. Wade in the Dobbs case pushed Georgia’s legislation about unborn children further toward enactment.
According to the Georgia Department of Revenue, that means if you’re pregnant, you can save some money when your tax bill comes due. Georgia officials released guidance on how to use this new option on Aug. 1.
GDOR’s briefing online says “any time on or after July 20, 2022, and through December 31, 2022, a taxpayer has an unborn child (or children) with a detectable human heartbeat (which may occur as early as six weeks’ gestation), the taxpayer may claim a dependent personal exemption…in the amount of $3,000.00 for each unborn child.”
This will only affect state taxes, because federal tax code does not include a provision offering similar tax deductions for unborn children. However, some federal lawmakers have pushed to make changes to income and child support rules surrounding unborn children, following the SCOTUS ruling in June.
U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) has already filed a legislative proposal to allow child support payments to start at conception. The Unborn Child Support Act would “establish and enforce child support obligations of the biological father of an unborn child (and subsequent to the birth of the child) to the mother of such child” at the mother’s request.” A similar proposal failed to pass in the Florida Legislature.
Separately, Rubio is also co-sponsor of another bill in the U.S. Senate which would create a tax credit for unborn children who are born alive.
The legislation, titled the Child Tax Credit for Pregnant Moms Act of 2022, would also allow credit “upon certification that a mother’s pregnancy resulted in a miscarriage (the involuntary death of an unborn child who was carried in the womb for less than 20 weeks) or that the child was stillborn (the involuntary death of an unborn child who was carried in the womb for 20 weeks or more).”
If the Child Tax Credit for Pregnant Moms Act makes it through both chambers of U.S. Congress, there’s a possibility implementation would look similar to the Georgia tax code changes.