What is the Work Opportunity Tax Credit?
- The Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) is a Federal tax credit available to employers for hiring individuals from certain targeted groups who have consistently faced significant barriers to employment.
- The WOTC was established in 1996, and has been successfully renewed 11 times.
- The U.S. Department of Labor and U.S. Department of Treasury jointly administer the implementation of this program through the IRS.
- The WOTC provides a fiscal incentive for employers to hire individuals who face challenges in entering the workplace, making it more difficult for them to attain independence and self-sufficiency.
- The WOTC helps vulnerable citizens find gainful employment, and reduces state/federal expenditures on public assistance.
Making Transition Age Foster Youth a Priority Population
- Senator Bob Casey is preparing to introduce the Improved Outcomes for Foster Youth Act, which would make transition-age foster youth one of the populations that are targeted by the WOTC. This would incentivize employers to hire transition-age foster youth.
- Throughout the WOTC’s history, there has been an ever-evolving list of target groups. The original WOTC target groups included economically disadvantaged youth.
- Current priority populations who benefit from the WOTC include:
- Summer Youth Employees
- Veterans who are unemployed, disabled and/or on food stamps
- Families who are deemed eligible for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)
- Individuals who qualify for Social Security Income (SSI)
- Individuals who qualify for food stamps (SNAP: Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program)
- Individuals who have a physical or mental disability which constitutes a handicap to employment who are receiving rehabilitative services
How You Can Help
- We invite foster care youth and alumni to share a personal story of why this matters, and/or how this might have helped you.