Re-Adoption in U.S. Not Required for Taxpayer with Valid Foreign Adoption to Claim Adoption Credit

The IRS National Office clarified a mistaken reading of Revenue Procedure 2005-31 in Chief Counsel Email 201509037.

The Revenue Procedure in question deals with complications of foreign adoptions and the adoption credit if a taxpayer adopts a child from a foreign country and

  • First completes an adoption in the foreign country where the child had resided and
  • Within one or two years later, re-adopts the child in the taxpayer’s home state.

Under the terms of the Revenue Procedure such a taxpayer may choose to treat the adoption as completed in either year.

However the email notes that the National Office became aware that examining agents were taking the position that no credit was available if the taxpayers failed to re-adopt the child in the United States but only had the foreign adoption.

The National Office email holds that this position is incorrect.  As the mail notes:

… Rev. Proc. 2005-31 does not require a re-adoption. In the absence of a re-adoption, the year of finality is the taxable year in which the foreign country’s competent authority issues the decree of adoption.