Child Tax Credit Payment Problems? Answers to your top 5 questions

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Some parents experience delays in paying their first child tax credit or incorrect amounts.

Sarah Tew / CNET

Last month, the IRS sent the first payment of the child tax credit to millions of eligible American families by direct deposit and mail – but not without a few hiccups. Some families said they still had not received their checks or received the wrong amount, which may have been caused by eligibility or income requirements. If this is you, use CNET Child Tax Credit Calculator to determine how much you should get.

One possible problem is that the child tax credit is paid on a monthly basis this year, so the IRS uses the most recent tax return on file. This could be a problem if your family has never submitted their tax return or if the tax information is now out of date due to a new child or different income. It could also be a simpler problem of the IRS not having your correct banking information. If this is the case, we can show you how to fix it using the IRS Portals, although it may be too late for the August payment.

The IRS Update Portal allows you to check your payment history, verify your eligibility, and opt out of monthly checks if you’re concerned. owe money to the IRS Next year. And beware, to use the portal you may have to create an ID.me account if you haven’t already. Keep reading for answers to common child tax credit issues, including if you think you owe leave a trace for a missing payment. We recently updated this story.

1. My family is eligible, but I have never received any money. What happened?

If you are eligible for enhanced credit but have not received your payment, there could be a number of reasons. If you filed your taxes, check the update portal to see if the payment arrives in the mail. If so, give it several business days to arrive. If you have set up a direct deposit, make sure all of the information is correct. Note: If you haven’t set up your bank details by June 28, you should expect the July payment to be a paper check.

If everything looks okay but you still haven’t received payment, you may need to file a payment record with the IRS. To do this, you will need to complete Form 3911 (PDF) and mail or fax it to the IRS. Only do this if it has been at least five days from the scheduled July 15 deposit date, or four weeks since payment was mailed by check.

2. I did not file an income tax return, but my family is entitled to enhanced payments. And now?

The IRS uses your 2019 or 2020 tax return to determine eligibility for the child tax credit. If you have not declared taxes, you may still be entitled to advance payments – you will only have to take one extra step. You can use the IRS Non-Filer Portal to sign up for future payments. Otherwise, the IRS may not have the most recent information, especially if you have had a child since then. It’s best to sign up as soon as possible to start receiving payments if you’re eligible.

Reasons you haven’t received a child tax credit payment

The problem What has to be done

You did not file a tax return for 2019 or 2020.

Use the IRS Non-Filers Portal.

Your payment arrives by mail.

Give it time to arrive as it may take several days.

You can’t find any reason why you haven’t received payment.

It may be time to file a payment record with the IRS.

3. The IRS portal says I am not eligible, but I still received payment. Why?

With the IRS sending millions of child tax credit payments, along with tracking income tax refunds and unemployment tax refund, it is certainly possible that the agency made a mistake. For example, some people who did not qualify for stimulus checks still received a payment.

If you are absolutely certain that you do not qualify for Enhanced Child Tax Credit payments but still received a payment, you will need to return that money to the IRS. Start by using the IRS Update Portal to unsubscribe from future paymentsthe next deadline for opting out of monthly payments is August 30. This will save you from having to pay back more money when you declare your taxes in 2022.

On the other hand, some members of a Reddit forum report that despite the child tax credit portal showing that they are not eligible, that they meet the conditions and that they have received their first payment. We contacted the IRS for more details on this situation.


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4. How do I know if my child tax credit payment was deposited directly instead of being mailed?

In addition to checking the IRS portal to see if it shows that your payment has been issued, you can check your bank account for deposit. According to the White House website, the transactions will contain the name of the company “IRS VERY 310“with a description of”CHILD“and an amount of up to $ 300 per child. Do not confuse this deposit with those on stimulus checks, which appear as”TAXEIP3“when filing. Also, if you are expecting a tax refund, it will show up as”TAX REFERENCE. “

5. Will I have to pay the IRS next year for the child tax credit money I receive?

If you qualify for the full amount of the child tax credit, you will not have to repay it. However, if you are not eligible for the full amount due to a change in your income or the number of dependents, but you still receive the full amount, you may need to repay this additional money.

The IRS uses what it calls “payment protection,” so if you receive an overpayment but fall below a set income level, you don’t have to pay off an overpayment. Above this income level, you will have to repay some or all of the extra money. Learn more about income levels and how payment protection works.

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The next child tax credit check will be paid on August 13.

Sarah Tew / CNET

Will the child tax credit be extended beyond 2022?

Currently, the subsidized payments relate to this tax year. This means that after you receive your final payment along with your tax refund in 2022, the child tax credit will revert to its original amount from previous years, which was lower. However, it’s possible that President Joe Biden and Congress will come to an agreement to extend the payments into 2025 – or make the changes permanent. Last week, Biden said he was urging Congress to do so: “I say to my colleagues in Congress: This tax cut for working families is something we should extend, not end, l ‘next year.”

While no decision has yet been made, we will keep you posted on the results.

For more information, here is how to withdraw future child tax credit payments. Also, here’s how track your child tax credit payment if you haven’t received it. Not sure you have the right amount? Use CNET Child Tax Credit Calculator to see how much you should get.

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