The IRS distributed the second round of payments from the newly expanded child tax credit to millions of parents last week, but some Americans are still waiting for the money to land in their bank accounts.
About 36 million families received both a first and second payment, each of which totaled around $15 billion, according to the IRS.
If you are waiting for the monthly child tax credit payment to arrive, you can check its status using the IRS' child tax credit update portal.
For those who are wondering where the money is, the IRS has set up a method to trace the missing payments. To do so, parents need to mail or fax a completed two-page Form 3911, Taxpayer Statement Regarding Refund.
But there are some caveats. In order to fill out the form, parents must first meet a certain set of criteria, including waiting:
- Five days since the expected deposit date
- Four weeks since the payment was mailed by check to a standard address
- Six weeks since the payment was mailed to a forwarding address
- Nine weeks since the payment was mailed to a foreign address
The agency also said that it's in the process of correcting an earlier glitch that affected U.S. citizens who were married to an immigrant. Those families – many of which did not receive the first payment – received a portion of the money with the August payment. The remainder will be distributed in late August, the IRS said.
Low- and middle-income parents can expect to receive $3,000 for every child ages 6 to 17 and $3,600 for every child under age 6 under the expanded child tax credit.
The payments are income-based and begin to phase out for individuals earning more than $75,000 and married couples earning more than $150,000. The tax credit is tapered by $50 for every $1,000 a family makes over the income thresholds.
If families earn too much to qualify for the sweetened tax credits, they can still receive the $2,000 credit for their children if their income level is below $200,000 for individuals and $400,000 for married couples.
There’s no limit on the number of children who can receive the credit per family.
The IRS is distributing half of the credit as an advance on 2021 taxes in six monthly installments, worth $250 to $300 per child. The remainder will come when parents file their 2021 tax returns next April.
If families would prefer to receive a lump-sum payment when they file their tax return in 2022, they can use this new tool unveiled by the IRS in June.
Parents who have provided the IRS with their bank account information in order to receive a tax refund will receive the payment via direct deposit. Otherwise, parents can expect to receive the money as a paper check.