Many Northwest Indiana residents are eligible to claim the Child Tax Credit (CTC) but may not realize it. According to the Tax Policy Center, nearly 4,000 Lake County, IN children are at-risk of missing the CTC. That’s potentially $14,400,000 that Lake County families could be missing out on. Due to recently-expanded eligibility requirements the CTC is more inclusive of immigrant and lower-income filers.

To provide financial relief during the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2021 American Rescue Plan expanded the federal Child Tax Credit (CTC) to more filers by making the credit fully refundable, meaning that even if taxpayers don’t owe income tax, the IRS will issue them a refund if they’re eligible; but they must file a tax return or register with the new Non-filer Sign-up Tool to receive it.

Eligible families can receive a payment of up to $300 per month for each child under age 6, and up to $250 per month for each child ages 6 to 17.

Who’s Eligible for the CTC

Lake County residents don’t need a Social Security Number (SSN) to claim their household’s Child Tax Credit (CTC), stimulus check, or other refunds.

Filers are eligible for the full amount of the CTC if:

  • They have income under $75,000 for single filers, $112,500 for head of household, and $150,000 for married filing jointly.
  • They have an ITIN or a SSN
  • They can claim a qualifying child, meaning:
  • The child must be their child, grandchild, stepchild or adopted child; younger sibling, step-sibling, half-sibling, or their descendent; or a foster child placed with them by a government agency.
  • The child must be 17 or under on December 31, 2021.
  • The child must live with them in the U.S. for more than half the year.
  • The child must have a valid SSN.
  • The child does not provide more than half of their own support in 2021.
  • The child must be considered a dependent for tax filing purposes.

Claiming Your Child Tax Credit

In order to claim your Child Tax Credit, Lake County, Ind. residents should visit www.GetCTC.org/Legacy before November 15, 2021.

For assistance completing your application, contact one of the following local sites:

  • Donna Catalano at South Shore Neighborhood Development Corporation: 219-736-1880
  • Tersina Jones at Urban League of Northwest Indiana: 219-239-2892

Claiming the CTC will not affect an individual’s immigration status or other benefits. The IRS does not share citizenship information with immigration or any other federal agency and receiving stimulus checks or tax credits is never considered under the public charge rule.

Help Spread the Word

You can help people receive the Child Tax Credit by spreading the word! Parents, guardians, and caretakers you know or work with may be eligible to receive the CTC under the expanded guidelines. We’ve already seen over 130 families receive the CTC in the last few weeks of the program’s promotion. We’ve made it easy for you to share. Visit our Resources Folder to download flyers, graphics, social media posts, and more. Materials are available in English and Spanish.

Partners

Legacy Foundation received a grant of $50,000 from the EITC Funders Network to help families access the Child Tax Credit in Lake County, and the Foundation is providing a $50,000 match to convene and support community partners that can help connect families to the credits. Legacy Foundation has partnered with the South Shore Neighborhood Development Corporation, Urban League of Northwest Indiana and FAITH CDC to assist residents who are eligible to receive the CTC but were not required to file taxes.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need a Social Security Number to be eligible for the Child Tax Credit?
Children must have a Social Security Number to be eligible for the Child Tax Credit. Parents are not required to have a Social Security Number, but they must have an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) to claim the Child Tax Credit for their eligible children.

Will receiving the Child Tax Credit affect my immigration status or my ability to get a green card?
No, receiving the Child Tax Credit or other tax credits that you are eligible for will not affect your immigration status, your ability to get a green card, or your future immigration plans. Use of tax credits is not considered in a “public charge” determination by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

What is the age limit for the Child Tax Credit?
The age for children qualifying for the credit in 2021 is 17 and under.

Will receiving the Child Tax Credit affect other benefits I receive, such as WIC, SNAP, SSI or TANF?
No, receiving the Child Tax Credit will not impact other benefits you receive now or in the future.

How much money will I receive for my child?
Eligible families can receive a payment of up to $300 per month for each child under age 6, and up to $250 per month for each child ages 6 to 17.

Will I need to file taxes to receive the Child Tax Credit?
To begin receiving advanced Child Tax Credit payments in 2021, eligible non-filers should submit a Non-filers Simplified Return Form by November 15, 2021. To receive the remaining Child Tax Credit, or if you
miss the advanced payment deadline, taxes should be filed in 2022 for the filing year 2021.

How do I file the Non-Filers Simplified Return Form?
To claim your Advanced Child Tax Credit, visit www.GetCTC.org/Legacy before November 15, 2021. You can also contact one of the local sites if you need assistance completing your application.

What are the income limits for the Child Tax Credit?
Filers are eligible for the full amount of the Child Tax Credit if they have an income under $75,000 for single filers, $112,500 for head of household, and $150,000 for married filing jointly.

Do I need a bank account to receive the Child Tax Credit?
The fastest way to get your Child Tax Credit is to have it direct deposited into your bank account, prepaid debit card or mobile app. If you do not have an account that accepts direct deposit, a paper check will be
mailed to you.