Social Security Caregiver Credit Act reintroduced

Father helps his teenage son adjust his tie
Social Security Caregiver Credit Act

A recently introduced bill in Congress aims to increase Social Security benefits for workers who take time off to serve as caregivers.

Currently, Social Security benefits are calculated based on the number of credits that beneficiaries accumulate during their time in the workforce.

Under the Social Security Caregiver Credit Act, introduced March 17, people who reduce their hours or quit their jobs to care for elderly family members and family members with disabilities would continue to accumulate credits with Social Security.

“People who care for loved ones deserve our gratitude. Penalizing caregivers by docking the Social Security benefits they count on is backwards,” said Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), who is sponsoring the bill with Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), said in a news release. “I’m introducing the Social Security Caregiver Credit Act because Washington should support those who support their families.”

To be eligible, beneficiaries would have to be providing 80 hours per month of unpaid assistance. The credit would be based on a sliding scale, up to a maximum credit equal to half of the average national wage.

Caregivers would be able to accumulate credits as caregivers for up to five years.

Rep. Nita Lowery (D-N.Y.) has introduced a companion bill in the House of Representatives.

“The Arc applauds Senator Murphy for introducing this much-needed bill to ensure that Americans who reduce their employment to care for a family member with a disability won’t as a result face severe cuts in their own Social Security benefits,” said Marty Ford, a senior executive officer with The Arc, in the news release. “These family members are contributing to their families and their communities in way that should be recognized when it comes to their future financial stability.”

3 responses to “Social Security Caregiver Credit Act reintroduced

  1. The Caregiver’s Credit Act should be passed, I urge all legislators to pass it. It is fair, because the government saved a lot of money when a Caregiver takes care of a relative

  2. This is too long in coming. Thank you for sponsoring this legislation! My daughter has given up a career to care for my grandson wo is only 7 and as had cerebral palsy from birth. He is dependent for most ADL’s and wheelchair bound. She also has 2 other children under 5. This nation does not value the sacrifice mothers make to care for our children or those who care for the elderly or debilitated. We have sent the message they are second class citizens. How tragic. Think of the millions of dollars this country saves by not funding long term care for some of these people. Surely we can give these caretakers some benefits for their often years of 24/7 work.

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