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Stillborn Child Tax Equity

P.A. 589
H.B. 4522 – Rep. Mary Whiteford

Current Status

Governor Rick Snyder signed H.B. 4522, on December 28, 2018, making the bill Public Act 589. It took effect on March 29, 2019.

Description

This bill enables families that experience a stillbirth after 20 weeks to claim a child deduction on their state income taxes in the year of the stillbirth. This is intended to help families cover the costs of prenatal care or the funeral arrangements incurred. This cannot take away the grief for the loss of the child, however it can help ease the financial burdens of the stillbirth.

History

H.B. 4522 was first introduced by Rep. Mary Whiteford in April 2017. The bill was referred to the House Tax Policy Committee on April 25, 2017. Almost a year later the bill was referred to the Senate Finance Committee. The bill was unanimously passed by the Senate (38-0) on December 20 followed by the House (107-0) on December 21.

In 2006, Governor Jennifer Granholm signed into law PA 319 which was the stillborn child tax credit. It allowed for a one-time credit to be taken on the state income tax return for the year of the stillbirth. However, in 2011, Governor Snyder cut the tax credit along with several other credits in an effort to address Michigan’s economic downturn. HB 4522 differs from the original tax credit in that it allows for a one-time deduction rather than a simple credit.