Child tax credit 2021: September payment delayed for some parents


Some American parents are eagerly awaiting their third enhanced child tax credit payment this week say they did not receive the money as expected.

The IRS said emergency relief, which Congress approved earlier this year as a way to help millions of households suffering from the economic effects of the pandemic, was sent to 35 million families on Wednesday. Some people may receive the checks in the mail, which can take several days to several weeks to reach mailboxes, or get a direct deposit to their bank account in a matter of days.

But the issue worries some parents who had already received payments as planned in July and August but said they had not yet received September. Payment. More than a dozen parents contacted CBS MoneyWatch to report the delay.

“I considered him reliable – and he should be as reliable as my father receiving a Social Security check every month,” said Tacey Harp, 38, a home phlebotomist in Banks, Ore., Who expected what $ 500 lands in her account this week for her two children, who are 12 and 14 years old. “I established invoices and orchestrated my budget around waiting for this money.

Under the program, parents of eligible children under the age of 6 receive $ 300 per child each month, while those with children between the ages of 6 and 17 receive $ 250 per child.

“Really frustrating”

Harp said she bought her daughter shoes last weekend and took her son to see a movie, in part because she and her husband expected the extra money from the CTC payment helps them manage their budget. But the payment did not arrive yesterday.

“Now my bank is overdrawn,” she told CBS MoneyWatch. “It’s really frustrating.”

The IRS did not immediately respond to a request for comment. In August, he reported a “technical glitch” that caused about 15% of beneficiaries who received their money from the CTC by direct deposit in July to instead receive paper checks in August. Paper checks generally take longer for parents to receive since the mail system can take days to weeks for delivery.

The September delay is unlikely to turn into a major problem, said Mark Steber, Jackson Hewitt’s chief tax officer. He recommended that parents continue to check their bank accounts as it can take a day or two for the money to land. They can also check the Child Tax Credit Update Portal to make sure their information is correct, such as their bank account details.

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Chris Walker, 37, a journalist in Madison, Wisconsin, told CBS MoneyWatch he expected a $ 250 child tax credit for his 13-year-old son to land in his direct deposit account September 15. On Thursday, he said he called the IRS for information and was told it could be a problem. This problem could take up to five business days to be corrected, Walker said, noting that a delay in obtaining funds “would make things a little tighter in the household.”

Child poverty reduction

The final payment marks the midpoint of direct cash assistance, with three monthly payments remaining under the plan President Joe Biden signed as part of the American Rescue Plan. While the CLC is not a new tax credit, the US bailout has expanded it to include more low-income taxpayers, while paying half the credit through six monthly checks.

The IRS has faced delays in disbursing some COVID-19 relief funds, as well as ensuring that all eligible people receive the payments. Earlier this year, millions of Social Security beneficiaries took a long time to obtain a third federal stimulus check, for example.

So far, the CTC’s monthly checks are helping reduce poverty and hunger among families with children, experts say. For example, the share of households with children who sometimes or often did not have enough to eat fell to 8.4% from 11% after the arrival of the first check, according to an analysis of census data by the Joint Economic Committee. of the Senate. Food and education expenses were among the top uses for vouchers, with 7 in 10 families investing the funds in goods, services or paying off debts, according to the JEC report.

Some Democratic lawmakers are pushing to extend the CTC program until 2025, although it is not clear whether this effort will be successful. Some advocates would like the expanded aid to become a permanent feature of the tax code, citing its effectiveness in reducing child poverty.

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