Most eligible families will receive monthly payments for the 2021 Child Tax Credit. For everyone else, here are three steps to getting your payments. If you haven’t filed a tax return or registered with the IRS, now is the time to take action. If you’re not sure you qualify, the IRS has a three-step process that can help. Each step has a free online tool available only on IRS.gov.
STEP 1: See if you qualify using the Child Tax Credit Eligibility Assistant.
Though this step is optional, it can be helpful if you are unsure whether you qualify for either the credit or the advance payments. By answering a series of questions on the Child Tax Credit Eligibility Assistant, you can preliminarily find out whether you qualify for the credit and the payments. You may still be able to benefit from the credit even if you aren’t working now or didn’t work in 2020.
STEP 2: Register with the IRS using the Non-Filer Sign-Up Tool or file a more complete 2020 tax return.
If you qualify for the Child Tax Credit or the advance payment but are not required to file a federal tax return for 2020, then you can register using the Non-Filer Sign-Up Tool. The Tool will also allow you to request the 2020 Recovery Rebate Credit if you didn’t get the full amount of your Economic Impact Payments. But you should consider filing a more complete tax return for 2020 if you’re eligible for other tax benefits.
STEP 3: Monitor payments and update your info using the Child Tax Credit Update Portal.
After the IRS processes your tax return or after you register through the Non-Filer Sign-Up Tool, you can use the Child Tax Credit Update Portal to monitor or manage your monthly payments. Initially, you can use it to verify eligibility, check the status of your payments, or update your bank account information. You can also use it to opt-out or unenroll from receiving monthly payments. Later this year, you will be able to use the Child Tax Credit Update Portal to update your account.