Families in Kansas and Missouri are already starting to see the federal government’s newest coronavirus “stimulus” checks—the recurring monthly payments from the expanded child tax credits—being direct deposited into their bank accounts, according to FOX affiliate WDAF-TV.
Approved under President Joe Biden’s $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan, the government will now allow parents to collect as much as $3,600 per year for a child under the age of six and up to $3,000 for children between ages six and seventeen. This all amounts to a $250 or a $300 payment for each child every month through the end of December.
Most of the initial payments are slated to be deposited on July 15.
Kansas mother Crystal Henry told the local station that the ongoing financial struggles have really put her family in a difficult situation.
“And really at that time, we relied on the stimulus to be our safety net,” she said.
Earlier this week, U.S. Rep. Sharice Davids and supporters spent time at the Family Conservancy in Kansas City, where they met with families who will directly benefit from the recurring child tax credits.
“Being able to put food on the table, find that next residence, those are the kind of stressors that are on families particularly coming out of the pandemic that has economic crisis,” Davids said.
In an effort to get the money promptly out to those who are eligible, the Internal Revenue Service already has launched three online tools for that purpose.
The tool featuring the most options is the Child Tax Credit Update Portal, which is now available on IRS.gov. This portal can be used to change how parents would like to be paid, such as from paper checks via the post office to direct deposit.
Another important tool is the Child Tax Credit Eligibility Assistant, which allows parents to answer a series of questions regarding themselves and their family members that will help determine whether they indeed qualify for the credits.
Finally, for individuals who normally don’t file a federal tax return, they should make sure to log on to the Non-filer Sign-up Tool. The IRS says that a user’s basic information will be used to assist the agency to promptly issue the credits.
The IRS has also partnered with nonprofit organizations, churches, and community groups to help people who don’t generally file a tax return to register for the monthly credits.
“This is part of a wider effort by the IRS to reach as many people as possible who don’t file a tax return but may be eligible for the Child Tax Credit and Economic Impact Payments,” Ken Corbin, IRS Wage and Investment Commissioner and the agency’s Chief Taxpayer Experience Officer, said in a statement.
Ethen Kim Lieser is a Minneapolis-based Science and Tech Editor who has held posts at Google, The Korea Herald, Lincoln Journal Star, AsianWeek, and Arirang TV. Follow or contact him on LinkedIn.