What is the Enhanced Federal Child Tax Credit?
The Enhanced Federal Child Tax Credit is part of the American Rescue Plan, also called the COVID-19 Stimulus Package, which increased the Child Tax Credit from $2,000 per child to $3,000 per child over the age of 6 and $3,600 per children under the age of 6. It also increased the age limit from 16 to 17 years.
Unlike the Child Tax Credit, which is distributed all at once post-tax season, the Enhanced Federal Child Tax Credit will be distributed monthly from July 2021 to December 2021. That means that each month eligible families will receive $300 for each child under the age of 6 and $250 for each child between 6-17 years old. The tax credit for year 2021 will be integrated into your annual tax filings in spring 2022.
Watch this short video of ABC-7 news coverage on this important topic, including an interview with Children's Council of San Francisco.
All families will get the full credit if they make less than $150,000 for a couple or $112,500 for a family with a single parent.
How to Apply and Make Sure You Receive Your Check
If you filed tax return for 2019, 2020, or previously signed up to receive a stimulus check from the Internal Revenue Service, you will automatically receive monthly payments, starting in July, without having to take any action.
If you did not file a tax return for 2019, 2020, or previously signed up to receive a stimulus check then you MUST sign up to receive your Enhanced Federal Child Tax Credit. Sign up here by clicking this link. At this time, you will also be able to sign up for any stimulus check you are eligible for but did not receive in the last year.
- You will need to provide the following information when you sign up:
- Full name, current mailing address, email address, and date of birth
- Valid Social Security numbers (or other taxpayer IDs) for themselves and their dependents
- Bank account number, type and routing number, if they have one
Frequently Asked Questions:
- What happens if I do not have a bank account?
- If you do not have a bank account, your monthly payment will be mailed to you each month.
- What happens if I do not have a permanent address or a bank account?
- You can receive monthly Child Tax Credit payments even if you don’t have a permanent address. You can list a trusted address where you would like to temporarily receive your monthly checks, such as the address of a friend, relative, or trusted service provider like a shelter, drop-in day center, or transitional housing program.
- What if I moved after I filed my taxes or move within the year, how do I make sure I receive my payment?
- To receive your payment by mail after moving, make sure to change your forwarding address on USPS. To do so, click the link here.
- Will this affect other benefits I receive?
- No. Receiving Child Tax Credit payments is not considered income for any family. Therefore, it will not change the amount you receive in other Federal benefits. These Federal benefits include unemployment insurance, Medicaid, SNAP, SSI, SSDI, TANF, WIC, Section 8, or Public Housing.
Frequently Asked Questions for Households with Undocumented Family Members:
- Do I need a Social Security number (SSN) to be eligible for the CTC?
- Children must have an SSN to be eligible for the CTC. Parents are not required to have an SSN, but they must have an ITIN (Individual Taxpayer Identification Number) to claim the CTC for their eligible children.
- Are DACA recipients eligible for the CTC?
- Yes, qualifying residents, including DACA recipients, are eligible for the CTC so long as the children being claimed in the household have a valid SSN. DACA recipients who are dependents of ITIN filers can also be claimed for the CTC because they have valid SSNs.
- Will receiving the CTC affect my immigration status or my ability to get a green card?
- No, receiving the CTC or other tax credits that you are eligible for will not affect your immigration status, your ability to get a green card, or your future immigration plans. Use of tax credits is not considered in a “public charge” determination by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.