HB 2199 is a bill that would acknowledge that a stillborn child was indeed a birth in a family. It recognizes that a couple preparing for the birth of that child should not be told that their baby wasn’t a child or a member of their family– even as they are grieving the early death of that baby.
The patron of this compassionate bill is Del. Chris Head (R-17). HB 2199 would ensure that a mother or family who experiences a stillbirth in a Virginia hospital will receive a tax credit in the taxable year of the unfortunate birth.
The IRS doesn’t currently recognize stillbirths as eligible for tax relief, but many states do, including Missouri, Arizona, and Minnesota. Virginia should do the same. At the very least this tax credit can help a family pay for the burial of their precious child.
This bill is important because it helps families get closure after such a tragedy and the bill also acknowledges that a stillborn baby is a member of the family and a life worthy of recognition.
UPDATE: This bill was “laid on the Table” in a House of Delegates committee in a February special session. So, as a result no vote was taken on the bill in that Chamber, which means it is defeated for this year. Hopefully it will be introduced again next year.