IRS Child Tax Credit: Don’t miss an extra $1,800 per child


The monthly advance payments in 2021 were only half of the child tax credit.

Sarah Tew/CNET

This story is part Taxes 2022CNET’s coverage of the best tax software and everything you need to file your return quickly, accurately and on time.

Many families who have filed their taxes are starting to receive the rest of their enhanced income child tax credit money. Eligible parents will receive an additional half of their child tax credit after declare your taxes and receive their tax refund.

To make sure you get the rest of your money, keep track of Letter 6419 tax. It will tell you how much money you received in 2021 and the number of eligible dependents used to calculate payments. Make sure that all the information on the letter 6419 is correct before you file your taxes, otherwise you may delay your tax refund.

Here’s what you need to know when you’re ready to file your taxes this year. This story is updated regularly.

Don’t Lose Your IRS Child Tax Credit Letter

The IRS has started sending Letter 6419 to families at the end of December. If you haven’t received it yet, keep an eye on your mailbox as some letters may still be in transit.

This letter contains important information about your child tax credit payments that you will need to check for accuracy – for example, the number of dependents used to determine the amount of money you get.

If you don’t receive the letter or if you lose it, don’t panic. All the important information you need for your 2021 tax return can be found on the IRS website with a online IRS account. Once logged in, simply click on “View my tax records” to see your child tax credit advance payments and the number of eligible children for 2021.

In fact, due to some report errors in letter 6419, the IRS recommends double-checking your information on the IRS website. The IRS insists that your online account information is accurate and up-to-date.

How much child tax credit money can you expect to receive this year?

If you and your family meet the income eligibility criteria and received each advance payment between July and December 2021, you can expect to receive up to $1,800 for each child age 5 and under, or up to $1,500 for each child age 6. and 17, when you file your 2021 taxes.

There is no limit to the number of children who are eligible for the expanded child tax credit, but your income level will affect the amount of credit you receive. The credit begins to decrease at $75,000 of income for single filers or $150,000 for those who are jointly married. It disappears completely at $220,000 and $440,000, respectively.

If you chose to withdraw partial payments before the first check is sent, you’ll get your full eligible amount with your tax refund – up to $3,600 per child under age 6 and $3,000 per child age 6-17. Any payments you missed due to IRS errors or because you opted out should be included in your 2021 tax refund.

What if one of your child tax credit checks never arrives in 2021?

If you are missing money on one of the previous checks due to an IRS error or outdated information, you can either wait for the issue to be resolved when you file your tax returns, or you can file a payment trail with the taxman. Before doing that, track your check to make sure he’s not already on his way.

Note that if you have gained a dependent since your last tax return, the IRS would not have this information on file. If this is your case, you will not receive any money until you file your taxes.

Will last year’s monthly payments affect your tax refund?

Child tax credit payments you received this year may potentially affect your taxes (For the best or for the worst). Here’s how:

  • You received an overpayment and the IRS did not adjust the amount on subsequent payments. You will have to repay this.
  • You received payments to which you were not entitled. You will have to repay the IRS.
  • Your income has changed and you have not reported it to the IRS. This could result in a larger or smaller tax refund or you owe the IRS, depending on whether your income was more or less than what the IRS used to calculate your payment.
  • You chose not to receive payments last year, so the payment will be larger this year.
  • You received money for a child who turned 18 last year. You may have to pay that money back.

If you received more Child Advance Tax Credit money in 2021 than you are entitled to, you may not necessarily have to repay it. Depending on your income level, you may be eligible for “money back guarantee.”

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You will need to account for your child tax credit advance payments on your 2021 taxes.

Sarah Tew/CNET

How to claim your money if you had a newborn or adopted a child since the last tax return

If you had a baby in late December — or adopted one — you’ll be entitled to up to $3,600 for that child when you file your taxes. This includes back payments for advance payments from July to December and the portion that accompanies your refund.

You should receive this money when you report your child on your tax return, which will notify the IRS of changes in your household.


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Why aren’t the enhanced child tax credit checks extended?

As of today, the enhanced Child Tax Credit monthly checks have expired and will revert to the original amount unless a vote is taken to extend the payments. The House of Representatives passed an extension of the child tax credit increase and advance payments when it ratified the Build Back Better bill in November. However, Senator Joe Manchina West Virginia Democrat, said he would not support the bill unless a work requirement for parents was added, thereby killing the legislation.

President Joe Biden said in January he wasn’t sure if the enhanced child tax credit would remain in the Build Back Better bill, but planned to split the package into several pieces. We’ll update this story as new information develops.

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