Families can take advantage of a special online tool that can help them determine whether they qualify for the Child Tax Credit and the special monthly advance payments beginning on July 15.
Available on IRS.gov, the new Child Tax Credit Eligibility Assistant is interactive and easy to use. By answering a series of questions about themselves and their family members, a parent or other family member can quickly determine whether they qualify for the credit.
Though anyone can use this tool, it may be particularly useful to families who don’t normally file a federal tax return and have not yet filed either a 2019 or 2020 tax return. Often, these are people who receive little or no income, including those experiencing homelessness, low income households, and other underserved groups. Using this tool can help them decide whether they should take the next step and register for the Child Tax Credit payments on another new IRS tool unveiled earlier this week.
To help people understand and receive this benefit, the IRS has created a special Advance Child Tax Credit 2021 page at IRS.gov/childtaxcredit2021 designed to provide the most up-to-date information about the credit and the advance payments. Among other things, the page already features a link to both the Non-filer Sign-up Tool, and the Child Tax Credit Eligibility Assistant, along with a third tool launched earlier this week—the Child Tax Credit Update Portal.
The Child Tax Credit Eligibility Assistant does not request any personally-identifiable information for any family member. For that reason, its results are not an official determination by the IRS. Though the results are reliable, if the questions are answered accurately, they should be considered preliminary. Neither the answers supplied by the user, nor the results, are retained by the IRS.
The online Non-filer Sign-Up Tool is designed to help eligible families who don’t normally file tax returns register for the monthly Advance Child Tax Credit payments.
This tool, an update of last year’s IRS Economic Impact Payment Non-filers tool, is also designed to help eligible individuals who don’t normally file tax returns register for the $1,400 third round of Economic Impact Payments (also known as stimulus checks) and claim the Recovery Rebate Credit for any amount of the first two rounds of Economic Impact Payments they may have missed.
Developed in partnership with Intuit and delivered through the Free File Alliance, this tool provides a free and easy way for eligible people who don’t make enough income to have an income tax return-filing obligation to provide the IRS the basic information needed to figure and issue their Advance Child Tax Credit payments. This includes name, address, and social security numbers. This also enables them to provide information about their qualifying children age 17 and under, their other dependents, and their direct deposit bank information so the IRS can quickly and easily deposit the payments directly into their checking or savings account. It is available only on IRS.gov.
The Non-filer Sign-Up tool should not be used by anyone who has already filed a 2019 or 2020 federal income tax return.
Eligible families who already filed or plan to file 2019 or 2020 income tax returns should not use the Non-filer Sign-Up Tool. Once the IRS processes their 2019 or 2020 tax return, the information will be used to determine eligibility and issue advance payments.
Families who want to claim other tax benefits, such as the Earned Income Tax Credit for low-and moderate-income families, should not use this tool and instead file a regular tax return. For them, the fastest and easiest way to file a return is the Free File system, available only on IRS.gov.
If you have any questions, contact the Crosslin tax team at (615) 320-5500. We are here to help!