Each necessary element to know concerning the $3,600 youngster tax credit score 2021 checks to this point

Every important detail to know about the $3,600 child tax credit 2021 checks so far

Households with youngsters may see some large assist quickly. 

Sarah Tew/CNET

We’re inching nearer to the brand new youngster tax credit score funds arriving this summer season. The expanded CTC is a part of the new stimulus invoice and can ship more cash to eligible households with certified dependents this time (you possibly can calculate your fee complete right here). Nonetheless, the IRS hasn’t set a precise date for when the CTC funds will exit.

At the moment, the IRS is working to ship out the third stimulus checks, alongside tax refunds for tens of thousands and thousands of individuals. Tax Day has been pushed again to Could 17, so it is seemingly the company will not shift focus to the kid tax credit score funds till after that date.

We’ll let you know every little thing it is advisable know concerning the new CTC, together with how a lot cash you possibly can get and whether or not the profit will grow to be everlasting. Plus, this is every little thing else the brand new stimulus invoice brings, from new well being care to insurance coverage. Moreover, if you have not acquired your third stimulus test but, this is the right way to observe it. This story has been up to date.

Learn how a lot you possibly can get with the brand new CTC

The brand new youngster tax credit score may doubtlessly carry your loved ones more cash this yr, assuming you are eligible. Happily, you do not have to do the maths your self to learn how a lot cash you possibly can count on. Utilizing our youngster tax credit score 2021 calculator, you possibly can enter your submitting standing, adjusted gross earnings (AGI) and the variety of youngsters you are claiming. Notice that the calculator does not retailer any info you enter.

What’s the youngster tax credit score and the way precisely does it work?

At a fundamental stage, the CTC is a credit score that folks and caregivers can declare to assist cut back their tax invoice, relying on the quantity and ages of their dependents. For a lot of, it might present a much-needed supply of aid as a part of a 2020 tax yr refund

Beforehand, the CTC was a $2,000 credit score mother and father may declare on their taxes for each youngster below the age of 17 (the identical age vary for youngster dependents that was used for the primary and second stimulus checks). And if that credit score exceeded the quantity of taxes {that a} household really owed, mother and father may nonetheless obtain as much as $1,400 of the stability as a refund; that is technically known as the extra youngster tax credit score or refundable CTC. For instance, a married couple with youngsters ages 5, 10 and 12 would obtain a complete credit score of $6,000 — except they had been due a refund, by which case they’d obtain $4,200.

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When will I receive the CTC money?

This part isn’t yet clear, with the IRS saying it’s still working on the details. We know that payments will occur “periodically,” but the IRS may not be able to commit to monthly disbursements. We also know that half the payment could come in 2022. Here are more details about when the CTC money will arrive, and how often, with a potential payment timeline.

What has changed with the child tax credit for 2021? 

The American Rescue Plan will temporarily give more money to families. Here’s everything that changes:

  • Credits increase from $2,000 to $3,600 per child under 6 and $3,000 for children older than 6.
  • The credit would also be fully refundable.
  • Money from the credit will be split: Half will be paid through the tax refund in 2022 and the other half will be paid monthly from July to December.
  • There is no $2,500 earnings floor.
  • Families in Puerto Rico can receive the credit.

Here are more details on money for qualified dependents, and who counts.

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Do I qualify for the CTC?

Families with kids under 6 will receive up to $3,600 per child under the new COVID relief bill. Families with children aged 17 and under will receive a credit of $3,000 per child. Families with older kids are also eligible: You can claim $500 for each child aged 17 and 18, or for full-time college students between the ages of 19 and 24.

The tax credit applies to children who are considered related to you and reside with you for at least six months out of the year.

Note that though the eligibility requirements are relatively broad, higher-income families may receive a reduced credit. But married couples filing jointly with an adjusted gross income under $400,000 are eligible for the full amount, as are individuals with an AGI under $200,000. 

Under the new plan, the amount of the larger credit will start to phase out for single people earning more than $75,000 a year, heads of household earning more than $112,500 a year and married couples earning more than $150,000 a year. Here are more CTC eligibility details.


With the CTC for 2021, you could get more than one check this year.

Sarah Tew/CNET

What if I share custody of a dependent?

Parents who share custody will not be able to both claim the 2021 child tax credit. Here are more details about a shared custody situation and the CTC.

Will the new CTC be based on my 2019 or 2020 tax return?

It will likely depend. The IRS will be tasked with basing your eligibility for the CTC on your 2020 tax return, if that’s been processed by the first July payment. Otherwise — in the case of a tax return extension, for example — the agency would use your 2019 taxes to determine the amount you’re owed.

How long will the new credit last? Will it be permanent?

The CTC for 2021 is considered a temporary reprieve for the year and would last only through 2021. Any changes to a 2022 CTC would need to take place in a separate bill.

For more information, here’s everything in the 2020 stimulus bill, when the stimulus check could arrive and how to calculate how much money you’d get in a third check. Here is also how to track your payment and what we know about using direct deposit to receive your money.

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