Frequently Asked Questions - Adoption Credit

Kansas law provides an adoption tax credit for those Kansas residents and part-year residents of Kansas who file as residents.

The adoption tax credit was first available for taxable years commencing after December 31, 1996 and has changed over the years. The adoption tax credit was repealed for taxable years commencing after December 31, 2012 and then was reinstated for taxable years commencing after December 31, 2013.

General Adoption Credit: The basic tax credit for Kansas residents adopting a child (or children) is 25% of the adoption credit allowed on your federal income tax return. An additional 25% credit (total of 50%) is available to Kansas residents if the adopted child was a Kansas resident prior to adoption. Another 25% credit (total of 75%) is available to Kansas residents if the adopted child was both a Kansas resident prior to adoption AND a “child with special needs.”

Special Needs/SRS Custody Adoption Credit: For residents adopting a child with special needs or a child in the custody of the Kansas Department for Children and Families (DCF), a credit of $1,500 is allowed in addition to those described in the General Adoption Credits. This credit is available even if you have been reimbursed all or part of the qualifying adoption expenses.

The Kansas adoption credit is only available to Kansas residents and to part-year residents of Kansas who file as residents.

Under Kansas law a child’s residency (domicile) is determined by looking to the parent’s residency (domicile). According to K.S.A. 59-2112, the residence of a child or the place where a child resides means: (1) The residence of the child’s mother if the child’s parents are not married; (2) the residence of the child’s father, if the father has custody and the child’s parents are not married; (3) the residence of the child’s father if the child’s parents are married; or (4) the residence of the child’s mother if the child’s parents are married, but the child’s mother has established a separate, legal residence and the child resides with the mother.

The residency (domicile) of an adult is determined in accordance with Kansas Administrative Regulation (K.A.R. 92-12-4a). Generally, “domicile” means that place in which a person’s habitation is fixed, without any present intention of removal, and to which, whenever absent, that person intends to return. In other words, a person’s domicile is the place they call home.

Kansas law provides that a child with special needs shall have the meaning as defined in section 23 of the federal Internal Revenue Code. 26 U.S.C. 23(d)(3) provides:

The term “child with special needs” means any child if-

  1. A State has determined that the child cannot or should not be returned to the home of his parents,
  2. such State has determined that there exists with respect to the child a specific factor or condition (such as his ethnic background, age, or membership in a minority or sibling group, or the presence of factors such as medical conditions or physical, mental, or emotional handicaps) because of which it is reasonable to conclude that such child cannot be placed with adoptive parents without providing adoption assistance, and
  3. such child is a citizen or resident of the United States [as defined in section 217(h)(3)].
The Kansas adoption credit was repealed for tax year 2013. Only those Kansas taxpayers carrying forward a Kansas adoption credit from a previous tax year are allowed to claim an adoption credit on the 2013 tax return.

The Kansas adoption credit was reinstated for the 2014 year. You may calculate your Kansas credit:

  • for any remaining federal carry-over credit from an adoption established in a previous tax year including tax year 2013; and
  • for a new adoption occurring in 2014.
If the adoption occurred during 2013, a Kansas adoption credit may be allowed based on the applicable Kansas percentage for any remaining federal carry-forward adoption credit allowed against your 2014 federal tax liability.

You do not need to amend your 2013 Kansas income tax return to establish a 2013 adoption, but you will need to send the supporting documentation relevant to the 2013 period with your 2014 Kansas income tax return. Supporting documentation will include:

  • Federal Form 8839 Parts I, II, and III
  • Adoption Decree

If you are adopting a “child with special needs”, the following documents are also required:

  • Agency Consent to Adoption (contact Kansas Department for Children and Families for a copy of this document); and
  • Adoption Support Agreement or Adoption Assistance Agreement (contact Kansas Department for Children and Families for a copy of this document).

If you are mailing your return, please include this supporting documentation with your Kansas income tax return and mail to Kansas Income Tax, Kansas Department of Revenue, PO Box 750260, Topeka, KS 66675-0260.

If you are e-filing your return, you may attach the required documentation as a pdf with your return (if your software is accepted by Kansas).

If you are e-filing your return and it is not possible to include such an attachment, or if you are using Kansas webfile, you may fax these documents to 785-296-8989.

No. You may only claim a Kansas adoption credit if you filed as a resident of Kansas when that credit was first allowed.
If your Kansas adoption credit is more than your Kansas tax liability for the tax year (after all other credits), you may carry any unused credit amount forward until the total adoption credit is used.
Kansas conforms to federal law, therefore if you are allowed an adoption credit at the federal level for the adoption of your spouse’s child, then you shall be allowed a Kansas adoption credit.
Kansas conforms to federal law, therefore if you are allowed an adoption credit at the federal level for the adoption of a grandchild or other blood relation, then you shall be allowed a Kansas adoption credit.
Kansas conforms to federal law, therefore if you are allowed an adoption credit at the federal level for an unsuccessful adoption, then you shall be allowed a Kansas adoption credit. If allowed, you will need to submit a copy of the federal form 8839, Parts I, II, and III. In addition, you will need to provide an itemized explanation of the expenses from your attorney.
Yes, you must complete a separate credit Schedule K-47 for each adopted child and attach to your Kansas income tax return.


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