Have not gotten your little one tax credit score cost but? Here is how you can observe if it was issued

Haven't gotten your September child tax credit payment? Here's how to track if it was issued

The third advance month-to-month cost went out Sept. 15. 

Sarah Tew/CNET

Had been you anticipating to get a direct deposit on Sept. 15 in your third little one tax credit score cost however by no means obtained it? You are not alone: Many eligible households are experiencing the identical drawback and will have already obtained their checks for as much as $300 per little one. Alternatively, some mother and father could have obtained their first cost in September, which may have been for $375 or $450 per child to make up for delayed funds.

There’s been a huge tax return backlog, in addition to changes on stimulus examine quantities, which is retaining the IRS busy. Some households are lacking their checks as a result of the IRS has incorrect banking data or mailing tackle data on file, or attributable to a processing glitch. And a few mother and father are receiving extra money than they qualify for due to outdated tax particulars, which may have an effect on their taxes subsequent yr. We reached out to the IRS for an replace on the delayed little one tax credit score funds however didn’t obtain an instantaneous response. 

For now, we’ll present you how you can examine your processed funds by way of your IRS little one tax credit score account. You may additionally must replace your info or choose out of the remaining month-to-month checks earlier than the subsequent deadline on Oct. 4. And when you’re nonetheless ready in your July or August cash, it might be time to file a cost hint with the IRS (extra under). Listed below are another widespread little one tax credit score issues that oldsters are going through and the most recent on the little one tax credit score extension. We have up to date this story not too long ago. 

What ought to I do if I am nonetheless ready on one in all my little one tax credit score checks? 

The 2021 advance month-to-month little one tax credit score funds began routinely in July. Regardless that little one tax credit score funds are scheduled to reach on sure dates, it’s possible you’ll not get the cash as anticipated for a couple of causes. The IRS could not have an up-to-date mailing tackle or banking info for you. The mailed examine could also be held up by the US Postal Service or the direct deposit cost should still be being processed. 

It is also essential to notice that when you’ve been a sufferer of tax-related id theft, you will not obtain little one tax credit score funds till these points have been resolved with the IRS. If the problems aren’t cleared up this yr, you may get the complete quantity while you file taxes in 2022. And needless to say even when you have unpaid state or federal debt, it is best to nonetheless obtain little one tax credit score funds when you’re eligible. 

Issues with lacking funds have additionally been reported amongst “mixed-status” households, the place one mum or dad is a US citizen and the opposite is an immigrant: It seems to have been an IRS glitch that the tax company corrected for the August cost. Dad and mom who file their taxes and whose youngsters have Social Safety numbers qualify for the funds so long as they meet the opposite revenue and age necessities.

One other attainable motive your examine could also be delayed is that your 2020 return is nonetheless being processed; the IRS continues to be working by way of a backlog of returns. In case your info has modified otherwise you had a child not too long ago, the IRS could not know that it owes you the credit score, particularly if the tax company is basing the credit score in your 2019 tax return whereas the most recent one is processing. 

How do I get an replace on my little one tax credit score funds? 

You possibly can count on recurring month-to-month funds to hit your checking account on the fifteenth of each month between now by way of December. In line with the IRS, you should utilize the Little one Tax Credit score Replace Portal to see your processed month-to-month cost historical past. It will be a great way to look at for pending funds that have not gone by way of your checking account but. 

When you nonetheless have not obtained the cash you are owed, see if the Processed Funds part of the Replace Portal has any info. If the cost was delivered, make certain your tackle and banking info are right — particularly when you’ve moved or modified banks.

To examine in your funds on-line, you may must register along with your IRS username and ID.me account info. First-time customers might want to have a photograph ID (it is one of many methods the IRS is attempting to guard your info from id theft). We do not know but if the portal will show different cost particulars, equivalent to banking info, quantity, the examine’s processing date or what might be inflicting a delay within the cost. 

When you’re checking your checking account, search for the deposit labeled CHILDCTC. In case your financial institution has not obtained the deposit from the IRS, it will not have any processing info for you when you’re attempting to find your examine. When you suppose there’s an error, begin through the use of the Replace Portal to double-check the financial institution particulars the IRS has on file, together with your account info and routing numbers. 

Little one tax credit score cost schedule

Month-to-month  Most cost per little one 5 and youthful  Most cost per little one age 6 to 17
July 15 $300 $250
Aug. 13 $300 $250
Sept. 15 $300 $250
Oct. 15 $300 $250
Nov. 15 $300 $250
Dec. 15 $300 $250
April 2022: Second half of cost  $1,800 $1,500

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Child tax credit: Everything we know


When should I file a payment trace for missing money?

The IRS also offers a payment trace as a way to find your funds, including from missing stimulus checks. You can request a trace — which means filing an inquiry into the location of your IRS money — by mailing or faxing Form 3911 (PDF) to the tax agency. Even if the IRS says you’re ineligible for advance payments, it’s best to submit a payment trace in case there’s a portal error. 

Your payment will be traceable if it has been at least five days since the deposit date and the bank hasn’t received the money, four weeks since the check was mailed or six weeks if it was mailed to a forwarded address listed by USPS. If the check was mailed to a foreign address, you can ask for a payment trace after nine weeks.

When to request a payment trace

Method of payment Time passed since IRS sent your payment
Direct deposit 5 days
Check mailed to standard address 4 weeks
Check mailed to a forwarded address 6 weeks
Check mailed to a foreign address 9 weeks

At first glance, the steps to request a payment trace can look daunting. You’ll need to print and mail the completed Form 3911 from the IRS (PDF) to start tracing your child tax credit payment. If you need help completing the form, contact your local tax consultant. Before you do, there are a few pointers to keep in mind. 

  • An IRS representative told CNET that there isn’t an abbreviation or code to include in the “Inquiry” field. You’ll need to be as specific as possible about what payment you’d like to track. Make sure to specify that you’re looking to trace a child tax credit check and the month the payment was disbursed. 
  • If you filed taxes jointly, both parents will need to sign the form to start the payment trace process. 
  • Be sure to check whether or not your money was sent via direct deposit or check. If your banking information is listed on the Child Tax Credit Update Portal, we recommend choosing the direct deposit box. 
  • You’ll need to mail the form where you would usually send a paper tax return in your area. The IRS has a list of addresses and fax numbers to help. 
  • You should not request a payment trace to determine your eligibility or to confirm your child tax credit amount. 
  • It could take up to 60 days to receive a response.

What if my payment amount’s not what I expected?

Your child tax credit checks may have been less or more than you expected. If you meet all of the child tax credit requirements and find that you’re receiving less or more money than expected, there are a few steps you can take. Start by checking your eligibility based on your most recent tax return using the IRS Eligibility Assistant

Note that the IRS said that it could be using your 2019 tax return to determine your eligibility. Once the IRS processes your 2020 tax return, it will automatically adjust your advance monthly payments by increasing or decreasing how much you get. If you didn’t file your taxes, use the Child Tax Credit Non-filer Sign-up Tool to add your information and determine eligibility. It’s unclear if the IRS will make up any differences in remaining payments or if the difference will be included in next year’s tax refund. 

One reason parents may get less money is if they fall out of the income bracket for the maximum amount for monthly payments. Married couples filing jointly earning up to $150,000 and single filers earning up to $75,000 can qualify for the full amount. If you make more, the monthly check is reduced by $50 for every $1,000 over the income bracket. So, if you earn $80,000 as a single filer, you may only be eligible for up to $200 per month — depending on other eligibility factors. 

If you didn’t get one of your checks, you may still get it with the next scheduled payment date after the IRS makes an adjustment. Parents with missing payments this year can expect their remaining checks to be larger, as they will be spread out over, say, four months instead of six.

How do I contact the IRS with questions? 

You may have questions about your child tax credit eligibility, missing check or changes to your information. Your first thought may be to contact the IRS, but there’s limited live assistance due to the tax return backlog, delayed stimulus checks and unemployment tax refunds. The IRS has not announced a separate phone number for child tax credit questions, but the main number for tax-related questions is 800-829-1040. 

Instead of calling, it may be faster to check the IRS website for answers to your questions. And remember that the Update Portal can help with eligibility, payment history and updating your personal information online. 


Some parents haven’t received the August child tax credit check yet. 

Sarah Tew/CNET

Is it possible to unenroll from the rest of the monthly payments?

The child tax credit requirements are different from previous years. If you ultimately receive more money than you’re eligible for, you might have to pay the IRS back. That’s why it’ll be important to use the Child Tax Credit Update Portal to inform the IRS of changes to your household circumstances so adjustments can be made. 

You may choose to opt out of advance monthly child tax credit payments to get one lump sum during tax time in 2022. It also may be the safest option to avoid repaying the IRS if you’re ineligible for the monthly payments, especially if your income changes this year. You can use the Child Tax Credit Update Portal to opt out of the program anytime. You’ll only need to unenroll once, and you should be able to reenroll later this month if you need to. 

If you or your spouse unenrolled from the child tax credit program but still got the money, it’s possible you didn’t opt out in time. You need to do so at least three days before the first Thursday of the month because it takes up to seven calendar days to process the request. Remember, the next opt-out deadline is Oct. 4. Note that if you file taxes jointly, both parents need to unenroll. Otherwise, the spouse who doesn’t opt out will receive half of the joint payment. 

Here are the deadlines for unenrolling:

Remaining child tax credit opt-out deadlines

Payment date Unenrollment deadline 
Oct. 15 Oct. 4 
Nov. 15 Nov. 1
Dec. 15 Nov. 29

The IRS will send a notice (Letter 6419) closer to tax time in 2022 with the adjusted credit amount based on the advance payments already disbursed to you. Hold on to this letter because you’ll need it when you file your 2021 income tax return if you need to return part of your payment. If you received the first and second child tax credit payments but are ineligible, it’s best to opt out before October’s payment. 

How do I update the IRS with changes to my mailing address or direct deposit details? 

Parents have until the next deadline, Oct. 4, to update banking and mailing information ahead of the October check. The IRS recommends using direct deposit to get future payments more quickly. Eligible parents who have banking information on file from stimulus checks or tax refunds with the IRS should have received money via direct deposit. If the IRS doesn’t have your account information, you can submit it using the Child Tax Credit Update Portal for the October payment. Any changes after this date won’t take place until the November advance check. 

If you don’t add your banking information in time, look out for a check mailed to the address that the IRS has on file for you — just like a mailed tax refund. And the good news is that you can now use the Update Portal to update your mailing address. The IRS plans to continue expanding the functionality of that portal so you’ll be able to update your income and number of kids in the near future. 

A commenter in a Reddit thread in July says they were told the IRS is having a few issues with the child tax credit checks but is working to resolve them. If you’re waiting on your payment and the portal says it’s “Pending,” keep holding on. A check should be coming your way soon via direct deposit or mail. After a week, you can try to contact the IRS, or eventually do a payment trace.

We’ll continue to update this story with new information about tool updates, the child tax credit program and tracking your payments. Take a look at how joint child custody affects the child tax credit as well.

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