Child Poverty

Child Tax Credit Payments Begin Today, But It’s Not Too Late to Sign Up

July 15, 2021 | National

Today, the first round of Child Tax Credit (CTC) payments—up to $300 per child—are hitting the bank accounts of millions of families across the country. Thanks to the expansion of the CTC included in the American Rescue Plan passed in March by the House and Senate Democrats and signed by President Biden, all but the highest-income families will receive monthly payments for the rest of 2021.

Helpful guides for families to sign-up

To learn more about this program, visit our CTC Frequently Asked Questions page.

The expanded CTC will boost and stabilize income for so many families and, if the program reaches every eligible child, could cut the child poverty rate nearly in half. The program will reach a substantial majority of families with children—nearly 90 percent—automatically. Joint filers with income below $150,000 and single head of household filers with income below $112,500 who have filed taxes in the past two years won’t have to do anything to receive their payments—they’ll be deposited directly into the bank account on file with the IRS or, if families don’t have an account on file, payments will be issued as a paper check. 

Families with income below those income thresholds, including those with no income, who haven’t filed taxes recently can still get the Child Tax Credit! To find out whether you need to take additional action to receive the CTC, you can consult this helpful flow chart from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

Families who need to take additional action to sign up for the CTC can do so using the IRS’s simplified filing tool, available here.

For additional information on how to use the simplified filing tool to sign up for the CTC, you can consult this step-by-step guide or watch this video walkthrough.

Families who are already set to receive CTC payments automatically can use this IRS tool to update their banking information.

To join our fight to make this crucial program permanent, visit our CTC Advocacy Hub and tell your members of Congress what the expanded CTC means to you and your family.