What is WOTC

Write To Your Representative

Dear Representative,

I want to strongly urge you to tell Congressional leaders to include two provisions in the next COVID-19 relief package: a refundable against payroll taxes Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) category to encourage employers to hire individuals on unemployment insurance because of COVID-19; and an enhanced Employee Retention Tax Credit. 

The proposed WOTC UI category was included in the HEALS Act and would encourage employers to hire individuals who are unemployed because of the pandemic. The vast majority of these individuals do not have a job to go back to, are currently on public assistance programs, and want to find work. The HEALS Act included a WOTC COVID-19 UI credit. Making it refundable against payroll taxes would dramatically increase the number of employers who would use the credit and thus its effectiveness, while at the same time discontinuing the need for people to be on public assistance programs.

We also strongly support the expansion of the Employee Retention Tax Credit (ERTC) that was included in the HEROS Act. Paycheck Protection Program and ERTC dollars have largely fun out. Absent the enhanced ERTC in the HEROS Act, most employers whose businesses have yet to fully recovered will have to discharge employees. Please support these two critical hiring and retention incentives.

Action Center 

Please join us in cosponsoring H.R. 2213 to permanently extend the Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) 

Dear Colleagues, 

We write to ask you to cosponsor H.R. 2213 to permanently extend the Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC). After receiving a five-year extension as part of the PATH Act in 2015, WOTC is scheduled to expire at the end of this year. 

Since its inception in 1996, WOTC has helped more than 24 million people move off public assistance and into the workforce by incentivizing employers to hire people who have consistently faced barriers to employment. WOTC provides employers with a modest tax credit for hiring eligible individuals from certain stigmatized groups, including those who are public assistance-dependent, experiencing long-term unemployment, qualifying veterans, and persons with a physical or mental disability, among others. 

The noted labor economist, Dr. Peter Cappelli of the Wharton School has extensively studied WOTC and has concluded that it: 

• Successfully expands the workforce by encouraging employers to hire individuals they otherwise would not be likely to hire due to a lack of job skills, work history or physical barriers to finding work. 

• Is cost effective. In 2018 alone, WOTC saved the federal government $16.7 billion in federal TANF, SNAP, Medicaid and housing subsidies, and saved states $ 3.5 billion in matching TANF, SNAP and Medicaid payments. The 10-year combined federal and state net savings from WOTC is estimated at more than $200 billion. 

• Continues to be needed because of the stigma WOTC-eligible persons face. 

Groups who are supporting a permanent extension of WOTC include: Paralyzed Veterans of America, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Society of Human Resource Managers, Goodwill Industries, Partners for Rural America, Feeding America, National Restaurant Association, Associated General Contractors, Retail Industry Leaders Association, IFoster, Citizens United for Rehabilitation of Errants International, Legal Action Center, American Staffing Association, National Puerto Rican Chamber of Commerce, National HIRE Network, National Grocers Association, American Staffing Association, Colorado-CURE, and the National Employment Opportunity Network. 

We urge you to cosponsor H.R. 2213 to permanently extend the Work Opportunity Tax Credit, which helps move people from public assistance to sustainable employment. If you have any questions or are interested in cosponsoring, please contact Miriam Wheatley at Miriam.Wheatley@mail.house.gov and Elise Tollefson at Elise.Tollefson@mail.house.gov



Member of Congress


Member of Congress


H.R. 2213, To Amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to Make WOTC Permanent

  • Mike Thompson (D-CA)
  • Tom Reed (R-NY)
  • Bill Pascrell Jr (D-NJ)
  • Tom Rice (R-SC)
  • Thomas Suozzi (D-NY)
  • Carol Miller (R-WV)
  • Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA)
  • Elissa Slotkin (D-MY)
  • Michael Waltz (R-FL)
  • Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA)
  • Sanford Bishop Jr (D-GA)
  • Jefferson Van Drew (D-NJ)
  • Antonio Delgado (D-NY)
  • Fred Upton (R-MI)
  • Brian Higgins (D-NY)
  • Judy Chu (D-CA)
  • Anthony Brindisi (D-NY)
  • Terri Sewell (D-AL)
  • John Katko (R-NY)
  • Henry Cuellar (D-TX)
  • Don Bacon (R-NE)
  • Mike Bost (R-IL)
  • Kenny Marchant (R-TX)
  • Ed Case (D-HI)
  • Josh Harder (D-CA)
  • Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL)
  • Elaine Luria (D-VA)
  • Daniel Kildee (D-MI)
  • Gilbert Ray Cisneros Jr (D-CA)
  • Daniel Lipinski (D-IL)
  • Kathleen Rice (D-NY)
  • Ruben Gallego (D-AZ)
  • Alcee Hastings (D-FL)
  • Michael Turner (R-OH)
  • Jimmy Panetta (D-CA)
  • Bobby Rush (D-IL)
  • Colin Allred (D-TX)
  • Andy Kim (D-NJ)
  • Darin LaHood (R-IL)
  • Harley Rouda (D-CA)
  • Abby Finkenauer (D-IA)
  • Joseph Morelle (D-NY)
  • Robin Kelly (D-IL)
  • Danny Davis (D-IL)
  • Ann Kirpatrick (D-AZ)
  • Jenniffer Gonzalez-Colon (R-PR)
  • Tom Cole (R-OK)
  • John Rutherford (R-FL)
  • Derek Kilmer (D-WA)
  • Alan Lowenthal (D-CA)
  • Steven Horsford (D-NV)
  • Rodney Davis (R-IL)
  • Earl Blumenauer (D-OR)


S. 978, Work Opportunity Tax Credit and Jobs Act

  • Rob Portman (R-OH)
  • Benjamin Cardin (D-MD)
  • Roy Blunt (R-MO)
  • Sherrod Brown (D-OH)
  • Bill Cassidy (R-LA)
  • Robert Menendez (D-NJ)
  • Margaret Wood Hassan (D-NH)
  • Martha McSally (R-AZ)
  • Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV)
  • Debbie Stabenow (D-MI)