May 7, 2014 is Advocacy Day — a day where the infertile community and its supporters try to convince Congress to pass a tax credit for infertility treatment — similar to the Adoption Tax Credit.
Currently, infertility expenses are only tax deductible. What’s the difference? I can explain.
In my letter, I said that the baby I am carrying has cost us almost $50,000. Let’s say that DH and I make $70,000 a year: with a tax deduction, we still have to pay taxes on the full $70,000. With a tax credit, we would only pay taxes on the balance of $20,000. (Geddid? If not, read this.)
I live 3,000 miles away from Washington, DC, but I wanted to share the personalized section of the letter I emailed to my representatives with you:
I have a genetic disorder which means from the moment of my own conception, I would be unable to have a baby without considerable medical help.
My infertility is not the result of poor lifestyle choices. There is no pill I can take, no diet to go on, no healthy lifestyle I can adopt to make it go away.
And yet my health insurance (Cigna PPO) does not cover anything, not even the medications.
I have spent twice as much money on medical bills this past year than I have ever earned as a salary. I have wiped out my savings, cashed in my 401k, and borrowed money from family members.
My infertility treatments alone (not including other medical expenses associated with miscarriage and testing) amount to almost $50,000. My husband and I have made extraordinary sacrifices to come up with the money.
The baby I am currently carrying is worth every last cent — but it would be wonderful if my health insurance had helped pay for it. Isn’t that what health insurance is for? To treat health conditions?
Infertility is a real condition affecting more than 10% of the population. Although *usually* not life-threatening, it impacts one’s quality of life. This needs to be addressed. And it needs to be addressed NOW.
The Family Act will help people like me offset some of the incredibly high expenses that come with building a family.
To get involved, even if you are only a slacktivist like me, check out these links: