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Updated Advance payments to parents for tax year 2021.

Child Tax Credit (CTC) | NYC Department of Consumer and Worker Protection (DCWP) / Internal Revenue Service (IRS)

1. How it Works

The Child Tax Credit (CTC) helps families afford the everyday expenses of raising a child. All tax filers with qualifying children are eligible for the credit, even if they have no earned income or don’t owe income taxes. The value of the CTC has been increased for tax year 2021, including up to $3,000 (per child under age 18) or $3,600 (per child under age 6) and can be received as advance payments starting July 15, 2021.

  • Update: CTC credits have been expanded for tax year 2021 through the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) of 2021.
    • Payments are fully refundable, which means you can benefit from the credit even if you don’t have earned income or don’t owe any income taxes.
    • The credit includes children who turn age 17 in 2021.
    • You can receive half of your CTC credit before you file your tax year 2021 return, and claim the remaining half when you file your tax year 2021 returns.
    • Payments will automatically be made to you on a monthly basis from the IRS starting July 15, 2021 if you have filed your taxes for tax year 2020 or tax year 2019.
      • The IRS will issue the remaining payments on August 13th, September 15th, October 15th, November 15th and December 15th.
    • The IRS has started sending letters to families who, based on federal tax returns, may be eligible to receive monthly CTC payments. Families who are eligible for advance CTC payments will receive a second, personalized letter listing an estimate of their monthly payment.
  • To qualify, a child or dependent must be a US citizen or resident and have a Social Security number. They also must have lived with you for over half the year.
    • You can claim your child, stepchild, adopted child, foster child, niece or nephew, grandchild, or great-grandchild.
    • If you have siblings, step-siblings, or half-siblings that live with you, you can also claim them.
  • If you qualify, the government mails your refund (paper check or prepaid debit card) or deposits it into your bank account.

2. Determine your eligibility

Update: CTC credits have been expanded to $3,000 (per child under age 18) or $3,600 (per child under age 6) for tax year 2021 through the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) of 2021.

To be eligible for CTC, you should be able to answer yes to these questions:

  • Do you have a child or dependent who is under 18 years old and has a Social Security Number?
  • Is your dependent a US citizen, a US national, or a permanent resident?
  • Has your dependent lived with you for over half of the year?
  • Is your dependent claimed on your tax return?

Take a short survey to see if you might be eligible for this or 30 other programs.

Am I Eligible?

3. What you need to include

It’s important to include the right documents when you apply. Your documents show whether the program is right for you.

This page can help you choose the right documents for your application.

If you want to receive your refund through direct deposit, you will need banking information (voided check and/or savings deposit slip). You should bring a copy of last year’s return, if it is available. The income documents listed are necessary to file your taxes.

Proof of who you are

For each person applying, any one document:

  • Driver license or official photo ID
  • Social Security Card for dependents
  • Social Security Card or ITIN

Proof of your income

Next section:

4. How to Apply

4. How to apply

Here are your options.

Apply online

If you filed taxes for tax years 2020 or 2019:

  • The IRS will automatically make advance payments to you every month starting July 15, 2021.
  • To check the status of your payments or update your information, use the Child Tax Credit Update Portal.

If you have not filed taxes or are not required to file taxes:

  • If you have not provided information to the IRS by October 15, 2021, you will need to file a tax return. The deadline to file your 2020 taxes was May 17, 2021, but you may be able to still file for free with NYC Free Tax Prep if your family earned $68,000 or less.
  • You can also use to file a simplified tax return online to claim your Child Tax Credit and missing stimulus payments, even if you don’t have your tax documents. You can use if these apply to you:
    • you have a valid SSN or ITIN
    • you earned less than $12,400 if single, $24,800 if married filing jointly
    • you have not filed a return this year
    • you didn’t receive the full amount of stimulus you were owed

Come back to it later.
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More ways to get help with this program

Visit the website

Go to the IRS page on Advance Child Tax Credit Payments in 2021 for more information.

Go to NYC Department of Consumer and Worker Protection for more information.

Immigrants can make an appointment with ActionNYC to receive assistance.

Call 311

Ask for tax preparation assistance.

Find a VITA or TCE location

Call 800-906-9887 to find the nearest Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) or Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE).

Visit a tax prep location

If you qualify, visit a tax prep location to get help filing your taxes in person.

Last Updated Monday, October 18th, 10:01am

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