Can a single person get the Earned Income Tax Credit?
As we approach the deadline for 2021 tax returns there is still time to take advantage of various tax credit, such as the EITC for low- and middle-income households.
The IRS offers a few different forms of financial relief to help families and the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) is one of the most widely used. Low- or middle-income workers may be able to claim a substantial tax refund from the EITC, although there are some requirements for eligibility.
In some instances you may be able to file for the EITC if you don’t even claim children on your tax return, however you will have to satisfy some additional eligibility requirements. You can file under any of the following statuses:
- Married filing jointly
- Head of household
- Qualifying widow or widower
- Married filing separate
What are the eligibility requirements for the Earned Income Tax Credit?
The EITC is designed to provide relief for families and low-income households who may be pushed financially, to ensure that they get a little help with their end of year tax bill. The qualifying rules for the program state that the claimants must:
- Have worked and earned at least $1 in 2021
- Have earnings within the income threshold for their home situation
- Have investment income below $10,000 in the tax year 2021
- Have a valid Social Security number by the due date of your 2021 return (including extensions)
- Be a US citizen or a resident alien for the whole year
- Not file Form 2555 (related to foreign earned income)
As a general rule, the more children claimed the higher the income threshold is. Joint filers will also obviously have a higher threshold than individuals.
You can still receive the EITC if you don’t have children but you must satisfy a different set of conditions in addition to the standard eligibility requirements. Those are:
- You must have lived in the United States for at least half of the year
- You cannot be the subject of a claim as a dependent or qualifying child on someone else’s tax return
- You must be at least 24 if you were a student for at least five months of the year, 18 if you were in foster care any time after turning 14 or were homeless in any taxable year, and at least 19 otherwise