The 2021 Child Tax Credit | Information About Payments & Eligibility Skip to main content
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Get this year's expanded Child Tax Credit

It’s not too late — you can still file your tax return to get the Child Tax Credit and thousands of dollars of additional tax benefits.

A Historic Increase

On March 11, 2021, President Biden signed into law the American Rescue Plan Act, expanding the Child Tax Credit and providing historic tax relief to the vast majority of families.

Thanks to the American Rescue Plan, the vast majority of families will receive $3,000 per child ages 6-17 years old and $3,600 per child under 6 as a result of the increased 2021 Child Tax Credit.

The Child Tax Credit helps all families succeed

The Child Tax Credit provides money to support American families — helping them make ends meet, more easily afford the costs of raising children, or save for their children’s future.

Studies show that it has helped people with the most basic essentials, including food and rent, as well as costs related to school, after school, saving, and paying down credit cards. About half of middle-income parents report spending their child tax credit payments on their mortgage, rent, utilities, or a car payment.

For the most hard-pressed families, the Child Tax Credit reduced food insufficiency among low-income families by 25 percent and had a dramatic impact on cutting child poverty.

Key Facts About the Child Tax Credit

The Child Tax Credit provides money to support American families

Here is some important information to understand about this year’s Child Tax Credit:

  • Increased amount: The American Rescue Plan significantly increased the amount of Child Tax Credit a family could receive for 2021, typically from $2,000 to $3,000 or $3,600 per qualifying child. It also made the parents or guardians of 17-year-old children newly eligible for up to the full $3,000.
  • Income eligibility: All eligible families can receive the full credit if they made up to $150,000 for a married couple or $112,500 for a family with a single parent in 2021.
  • Advance monthly payments: The American Rescue Plan—for the first time ever—provided tens of millions of families with advance monthly payments between July and December of 2021 worth up to one-half of their estimated full annual credit amount.
  • Your remaining credit: Families, including those who received part of their Child Tax Credit as monthly payments last year, can get their remaining Child Tax Credit by filing a tax return this year.
  • Non-taxable: The Child Tax Credit, including the monthly payments received last year, are not taxable.
  • Does not affect other benefits: Receiving the Child Tax Credit will have no impact on anyone’s eligibility for, or lower the amount, of other federal benefits.
  • File your taxes to receive your full credit: If you qualified for monthly Child Tax Credit payments but did not receive them, you will receive the full credit amount when you file your tax returns.
  • For parents and legal guardians: Anyone, including grandparents, who are legal guardians may be eligible for the Child Tax Credit.

Here’s how you can determine if you are eligible or find free resources to help you file for the credit.

How to Use This Website

Get help filing your tax return to get the Child Tax Credit

This website exists to help people:

  • Get the Child Tax Credit.
  • Understand how the 2021 Child Tax Credit works.
  • Find out if they are eligible to receive the Child Tax Credit.
  • Understand that the credit does not affect their federal benefits.

It provides information about the Child Tax Credit and the monthly advance payments made from July through December of 2021. Every page includes a table of contents to help you find the information you need.

Last updated October 2022