June 9, 2021

Child Tax Credit Expansion: What Is It?

U.S. Representative Mike Doyle (D-PA-19) released information on how the expansion of the Child Tax Credit will impact constituents in Pittsburgh and Pennsylvania’s 18th Congressional District.


What are the benefits?

    • Over 86 percent of children in Pennsylvania’s 18th Congressional District will benefit from the expanded and improved Child Tax Credit.
    • The average benefit from the tax credit for almost 36,000 households is $2,800.
    • Families with children in poverty will receive an average benefit of $4,500.
    • Almost 7,500 children will be lifted out of poverty. This includes 4,500 children who are considered to be in “deep poverty” and 2,300 children under the age of six.

How much are families eligible for?

    • Families can receive up to $300/month per child, with a maximum total limit of $3,600 per child.
    • Children aged five and under can receive a maximum of $3,600 and those between six and 17 years are eligible for a maximum of $3,000.
    • Families with 18-year-old children and full-time college students ages 24 and under can receive a one-time payment of $500 per child.

Who is eligible?

The new child tax credit will benefit parents and guardians who:

    • make up to $75,000 for single filers, and
    • make up to $150,000 for married couples filing a joint return.

Benefits will be distributed to parents and guardians who filed their taxes in July 2021 and will last for one year.

What led to the expansion?

The expansion of the child tax credit was made possible by the latest COVID-19 relief package, the American Rescue Plan Act. President Biden signed the bill into law on March 11, 2021. Over 27 million children across the United States will benefit from this expansion. Under the prior law, the child tax credit only offered up to $2,000 per qualifying child under the age of 17.

What are advance payments?

Families can receive up to 50 percent of their child tax credit before filing next year’s taxes. These advance payments will be made from July through December to all eligible taxpayers who have a main home in the United States for more than half of the year. Filing electronically with direct deposit can speed up advance child tax credit payments.

What do families need to do?

Eligible families who have not filed their 2020 tax returns should do so as soon as possible. If you do not wish to receive advance payments, you can decline the opportunity. Taxpayers will also have the opportunity to update information about their income, filing status, and the number of qualifying children. More details coming soon.

Read the Full Release

For more information, read the full press release or visit the IRS website. More information on advanced payments will be shared on the IRS website soon.