The IRS made important changes to the Child Tax Credit (CTC) so that eligible taxpayers received advance payments of the CTC for the 2021 tax year. Half the total credit amount was paid in six monthly payments, starting in July 15, 2021, and continuing through December 2021. If you received an advance CTC payment, you will claim the other half of the credit when you file your 2021 income tax return.
The total amount of the credit varies from family to family, depending on family income, filing status, and the ages and number of children. Families are eligible for the full amount of the credit if they earn less than $150,000 file a joint return. Single filers who earn less than $75,000 are also eligible for the full credit amount, as are head-of-household filers earning less than $112,500.
Eligible taxpayers with children 5 and younger are eligible for credits of as much as $3,600 per child, with up to $300 received monthly in advance. And eligible families with children ages 6 to 17 are eligible for up to $3,000, with up to $250 a month in advance.
The IRS started sending Letter 6419, “2021 Advance Child Tax Credit Payments”, in late December 2021. Married couples should receive two separate letters — one for each spouse.
Credit recipients should compare the payment total in their IRS letter with their bank statements to see if they agree.
WARNING: The IRS acknowledges that “some discrepancies” have been reported, but they do not believe that this is a widespread problem.
If your IRS letter contains errors or discrepancies concerning the payments you received, you can go to the IRS child tax credit update website (https://www.irs.gov/credits-deductions/child-tax-credit-update-portal) to create an account and check your information online. The website contains the most accurate CTC payment information. Alternatively, you can call IRS customer service at 800-TAX-1040 (800-829-1040) from 7 AM to 7 PM local time.
Bottom Line: Look for and Retain your Advance Child Tax Credit Letter for your 2021 Taxes!
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