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Deadline arrives to opt out of child tax credit payment

Published: Jun. 28, 2021 at 8:59 PM CDT
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Correction:  We want to correct information we previously reported about the Advance Child Tax Payments.  If you do not want to receive this money at this time, you only have to unenroll once.  We previously incorrectly reported you must unenroll each month.  We apologize if this caused confusion.  Again, it is only necessary to unenroll one time if you do not want to receive this payment now.

WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) - Parents wanting to opt out of receiving child tax credit payments that start next month have until midnight to do so for July’s payment. The Enhanced Child Tax Credit was signed into law by President Joe Biden as part of the American Rescue Plan. Eyewitness News spoke with some parents who said they like the idea of getting some of the money early, but we also spoke with a tax expert who advised waiting unless you really need the money.

You can find the full list of payment dates and opt-out deadlines for the months ahead on the IRS’s website.

Unenrollment from the tax credit is a one-time action and you cannot reenroll at this time.

About 36 million American families will start receiving monthly checks from the IRS on July 15 as part of the Expanded Child Tax Credit.

“We did not opt out of the tax credit just because we knew we would get it either way and it’s kind of like we get it faster this way,” said Wichita father Michael Ellsworth.

Ellsworth and his wife, Preslee, said for them, getting some of the money earlier will come in handy.

“It’s going to be really helpful for us. We have two kids and one on the way, so we’re happy about that,” Ellsworth said.

The credit is for individuals making up to $75,000 per year and couples earning up to $150,000. If you have a child younger than six, you get $3,600 and if you have a child that is six to 17 years old, you’ll get $3,000. Previously, the amount was $3,000.

“This payment is an advance on your refundable credit. So, that means if you do not opt out, choose to take the money now, that means that your refund coming in next year will potentially be smaller,” said tax expert Shane Albrecht with Liberty Tax Service. He said if you’re used to getting a large amount on your tax return, that could change if you don’t opt out.

“Even though they moved up the total payments that you’re receiving, the amount of advancements that you would get would actually make your refund, if you’re expecting it, if you’re used to it, a lot smaller,” he said.

He said having some security when you file your taxes is a reason to wait if you don’t need the money immediately.

“That way, you have some safe security, you have some safety blanket come April,” he said. “If something goes wrong, you have extra money to help pay for taxes if your tax bill goes up.”

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