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Child Tax Credit Resource

For Parents and Caregivers


This resource gives more information for families about the Child Tax Credit, which is part of the American Rescue Plan.

Cartoon rendering of two bills.The Child Tax Credit is part of the American Rescue Plan. It’s a way to help families raising children by providing a tax benefit upfront via payments each month instead of waiting until the end of the year to receive the tax credit via your income tax refund. This means that most families with children will automatically receive monthly payments unless they opt out. Families who do not opt out and elect to receive payments will notice a significant decrease in their tax return in the Spring of 2022 because the money they receive  through the tax credit is deducted from that money.

Where can families find out if they are eligible to receive payments?

Payment amounts vary based on your income, the number of children you have, and the ages of those children. To find out if you are eligible, visit the Advance Child Tax Credit Payments. If you didn’t make enough to be required to file taxes in 2020 or 2019, you can still get benefits. Visit the Child Tax Credit Non-filer Sign-up Tool.

How will families receive the funds?

If you typically receive your tax refund via direct deposit into your bank account, you will receive your Child Tax Credit via direct deposit each month on the 15th. If you typically receive your tax refund via mail, you will also receive your Child Tax Credit via mail around the middle of each month. This will begin in July 2021. To check when payments will be distributed, visit the Advance Payment Process of the Child Tax Credit.

Will receiving the Child Tax Credit affect other government benefits?

No. The Child Tax Credit payments are not considered income and will not change any Federal benefits, such as SSI, SNAP, TANF, or WIC.

Can families opt out of receiving the Child Tax credit each month and receive their money as a lump sum when filing taxes for 2021?

Yes. To opt out of monthly payments, please visit the Child Tax Credit Update Portal. This online tool can also be used to check the enrollment status of payments and update direct deposit bank account information.

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This information was developed by the Autism Services, Education, Resources, and Training Collaborative (ASERT). For more information, please contact ASERT at 877-231-4244 or info@PAautism.org. ASERT is funded by the Bureau of Supports for Autism and Special Populations, PA Department of Human Services.