Internal Revenue Service letters are in the mail to millions of families about the 2021 Child Tax Credit payments, with payments expected around July 15 by check or direct bank deposit.  Under the American Rescue Plan, the Child Tax Credit increased from $2,000 to $3,600 max per child.  This Child Tax Credit is different from past years, as half of the total payment amount will be sent automatically in monthly payments through the end of 2021.  Parents have the option to receive this monthly payment or a lump sum when filing taxes in 2022.  The IRS will send a second letter with a personalized estimate of your Child Tax Credit payment amount and the IRS also has an online tool for enrolling and updating your information.

When will Child Tax Credit Payments Start Arriving in Bank Accounts?

Starting in mid-July, and for the next six months, the IRS will send a check or deposit directly to your bank.  The IRS payment schedule follows:

  • July 15
  • August 13
  • September 15
  • October 15
  • November 15
  • December 15

In addition to the monthly payments another lump sum payment would come with tax refunds in April 2022.   There is also the option to unenroll from the monthly payments and receive a lump sum credit when filing a 2021 tax return.

The new maximum Child Tax Credit is available to taxpayers with a modified adjusted gross income of:

  • $75,000 or less for singles,
  • $112,500 or less for heads of household, and
  • $150,000 or less for married couples filing a joint return and qualified widows and widowers.

 

Eligible families could potentially receive up to $3,600 per child in the form of $300 monthly installments.   The age breakdown and maximum payment for this new credit:

  • Age 5 & under – $3,600 or $300 a month
  • Age 6 to 17 – $3,000 or $250 a month

Most families do not need to take any action to get the Child Tax Credit payment.  However, eligible families are encouraged to file their 2019 and 2020 tax returns as soon as possible to receive the advance payments.  In most cases the IRS will calculate the payment amount based on the 2020 tax return.  If for some reason the 2020 tax return is not available, the 2019 return will be used to calculate the Child Tax Credit payment.

You can find more information at IRS.gov.

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