DEFINITION of 'Qualified Adoption Expenses - QAE'

The necessary costs paid to adopt a child younger than 18 years of age or any disabled person who requires care. Qualified adoption expenses (QAE) are those that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) defines as reasonable and necessary, including adoption fees, court costs, attorney fees, travel costs and other expenses directly related to the adoption. These fees can be used to claim an adoption credit or exclusion that reduces the adopting parents' taxable income.

BREAKING DOWN 'Qualified Adoption Expenses - QAE'

Eligible taxpayers use IRS form 8839 to provide the information required to claim the adoption credit on their federal tax returns. Taxpayers must provide the adopted child's first and last names, year of birth and identifying number. They must also note whether the child has special needs or was foreign born and attach the required adoption documents. The tax credit for QAE phases out for taxpayers whose modified adjusted gross incomes exceed a certain threshold. Taxpayers may not claim the adoption credit for any fees paid or reimbursed by an employer or government program. They also may not claim the credit when adopting a spouse's child.

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