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CHild Tax Credit

Child Tax Credit: what is the payment schedule in 2021? What payments are missing?

Three payments of the credit have already been sent out and three more are to come in 2021, with the next one due on October 15.

Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-NY) talks to the media as he returns to the U.S. Capitol after a meeting with President Biden on September 22, 2021 in Washington, DC.
Kevin DietschAFP

The Child Tax Credit has been sent out since July and it has been very popular. Who wouldn't object to an extra $300 dollar in their bank account each month? Studies have proven its positive effects on recipients mental health, lifting millions out of poverty, and, surprising for some, an extra willingness to find work.

Three payments have been sent so far; July, August and September, with the next due in just over three weeks on October 15. The opt-out date is on October 4, so if you think it may be beneficial for you to opt out, then you must do so by this date. This can be done by using the IRS portal here.

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What is the schedule for 2021?

Six payments of the Child Tax Credit were and are due this year. Recipients can claim up to $1,800 per child under six this year, split into the six payments. For recipients with children between six and 17 then they can receive $1,500 per child.

Payment schedule for 2021

Payment month
Opt-out Deadline Date
Payment Date
July (sent)
28 June 2021
15 July 2021
August (sent)
2 August 2021
13 August 2021
September (sent)
30 August 2021
15 September 2021
4 October 2021
15 October 2021
1 November 2021
15 November 2021
December - Final Payment
29 November 2021
15 December 2021

And for 2022?

While monthly payments won't continue in 2022, the last six months of the payment will arrive as a lump sum once you have filed your 2021 tax return.

For people who opted out, don't worry. If you are still eligible come the end of the tax year then you will receive all the payments you missed as a lump sump. For example, If you received the July and August 2021 payments but none after for one 5 year-old child, you would receive $3,000 after you have filed the tax return.

What are the recent developments about the extension to 2025?

The Child Tax Credit extension is tied up within the $3.5 trillion reconciliation bill. At the moment it is being negotiated in Congress, but it is looking doubtful whether it will pass in its full form. The moderate democrats want to limit the bill to around $1.5 trillion, a move the progressive wing of the party say is far too small.

Furthermore, the passage of both bills was supposed to be tied together. This week, however, the Democrat hierarchy split the bills, breaking an agreement with the progressives. They say they will no longer vote for the infrastructure bill, meaning it won't be able to pass the vote, which is on Monday. An extremely chaotic time in Congress, but one which will have long-lasting effects on American families' pockets.