An official website of the United States government The child tax credit helps families with qualifying children get a tax exemption. You may be able to claim the credit even if you don't normally file a tax return. You can apply for the child tax credit for every qualifying child who has a valid Social Security number to work in the United States. Parents and guardians with higher incomes may be eligible to apply for a partial credit.
Use our interactive tax assistant to check if you are eligible. You can apply for the child tax credit by paying your children and other dependents on Form 1040, U.S. Individual Income Tax Return. Department of State, and attaching a full Schedule 8812, Credits for Qualifying Children and Other Dependents.
You may qualify for the credit for other dependents for a child or dependent who is not a qualifying child for the purposes of the child tax credit. Learn more about how to apply for this credit. For official guidance, see IRS Publication 972, Child Tax Credit and Credit for Other Dependents. For 30 years, these partnerships have connected low- and moderate-income people with tax benefits such as the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), the Child Tax Credit (CTC) and Voluntary Tax Assistance (VITA).
The IRS has provided detailed information on other, less common factors that may affect whether a child qualifies for the child tax credit. The federal government and twelve states offer child tax credits to improve economic security for families with children, particularly low- to middle-income families. Like the federal child tax credit, state child tax credits are a strategy for improving family economic stability and are often supported by bipartisan parties. If you don't qualify for the maximum amount, use the Get Your Child Tax Credit tool to calculate how much you should receive.
This website provides information to help the public understand the child tax credit and anticipate child tax credit payments. The COVID-19 pandemic created or aggravated economic burdens for many families, and recent legislative trends suggest that states are increasingly considering child tax credits. If you've experienced a change in your income since you last filed your tax return, this may affect the amount you can receive for each qualifying child. Even if you received monthly payments, you must file a tax return to get the other half of your credit.
Nine of the twelve states (California, Colorado, Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York and Vermont) have made the child tax credit refundable. Colorado developed a tiered system based on income levels and is calculated using a percentage of the federal child tax credit. In addition, California and New York have introduced laws to expand their current state child tax credits.