Contact: Aaron White
WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Rep. Ron Kind cosponsored the bipartisan Gold Star Family Tax Relief Act, which would repeal a tax hike families of fallen Servicemembers (Gold Star Families) faced this tax year as a consequence of the hastily-passed GOP tax plan. The $2.3 trillion unpaid-for tax plan, which passed in 2017 with no Democratic support, gave 83 percent of benefits to the top 1 percent of Americans.
The tax hike forced some survivors of fallen Servicemembers to pay thousands of additional dollars in taxes on survivor benefits. The Gold Star Family Tax Relief Act would classify survivor benefits as earned income, reducing the tax burden for Gold Star Families.
“Wisconsin’s Gold Star Families deserve the full support of the federal government, and should never have been burdened with the consequences of a rushed tax plan. I am proud to be an original cosponsor of the Gold Star Family Tax Relief Act, which will right this wrong, and thank the Wisconsinites who brought this issue to my attention during a recent Listening Session,” said Rep. Ron Kind.
Spouses of fallen Servicemembers can sign over earned benefits to their children to ensure the family receives full survivor benefits from the VA and the Department of Defense. Prior to 2017, Gold Star Families were obligated to pay 12-15 percent in taxes on survivor benefits placed under the children’s names, but the 2017 tax reform package changed how children’s assets are taxes – treating the benefit as a trust. Consequently, some Gold Star Families saw their tax rate jump to 37 percent.
Rep. Ron Kind’s office is open to serve Wisconsin Servicemembers, Veterans and Gold Star Families. Issues Rep. Kind’s office can help with include: Accessing education and health care benefits, attaining and replacing medals earned, and obtaining disability compensation or survivor benefits. More information can be found by calling toll-free: 1-888-442-8040 or by visiting: kind.house.gov.