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When to expect the (possibly) last IRS child tax credit payment

December 9, 2021, 6:38 PM UTC

Call it a Christmas bonus from the government or the latest tax advance, but what could be the last round of child tax credits will start rolling out to families on Wednesday, Dec. 15.

The Internal Revenue Service and Treasury Department will begin distributing the sixth round of payments to families just 10 days before Christmas. Most households will automatically receive up to $300 for each child up to age 6 and $250 for each one ages 6 through 17. Ultimately, parents can claim up to $3,600 per child on their 2021 taxes next year.

Democrats are rushing to make the child tax credit permanent but are finding roadblocks within their own party. Sen. Joe Manchin III (D-W.Va.) has repeatedly raised concerns about the size and scope of the Build Back Better Act, which (among other things) would make the tax credit and its checks a regular occurrence.

If Congress is unable to reach an agreement on legislative changes, the expanded program will come to an end next month, with tax credits returning to their previous, smaller levels.

Eligible taxpayers with their bank account information on file with the IRS will receive a direct payment. The rest of the nearly 36 million parents will get a check delivered in the mail—unless they have opted to receive it in their 2022 tax return. Single filers with a modified adjusted gross income of less than $75,000 per year and couples filing jointly with annual income of $150,000 or less can qualify for the full child tax credit for each dependent. People and households that earned more last year will see their payments phase out.

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