People living in Georgia are now able to list their unborn child as a dependent on their tax returns, according to a new set of guidelines from the state’s revenue department.
Following the recent Supreme Court decision eliminating the federally protected right to abortion procedures, “the Department will recognize any unborn child with a detectable human heartbeat, as defined in O.C.G.A. § 1-2-1, as eligible for the Georgia individual income tax dependent exemption,” the Georgia Department of Revenue said in a statement Monday.
“As such, on individual income tax returns filed for Tax Year 2022 where, at 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,” state officials said.
The state’s personal exemption is $3,000 for each unborn child.
The department said parents will need to provide relevant medical records or other supporting documentation if requested.
The policy change only applies to state tax returns and will not affect a person’s federal taxes.
“A state (e.g., GA) cannot dictate federal law. GA’s decision will have no impact on the IRS or the Internal Revenue Code,” Columbia Law School professor Alex Raskolnikov told NPR.
The rules elicited a response from the campaign manager for former Georgia State Rep. Stacey Abrams, who is running to be the state’s next governor in November.
“So what happens when you claim your fetus as a dependent and then miscarry later in the pregnancy, you get investigated both for tax fraud and an illegal abortion?” Lauren Groh-Wargo wrote on Twitter.
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