What is Child Tax Credit?

A federal tax benefit known as the Child Tax Credit was created to help families with dependents financially. This benefit offers much-needed financial relief to those who need it most by assisting families with qualifying children in lowering their tax obligations and receiving a tax break. The credit was created to assist families in defraying the costs of raising children, which can be a considerable financial hardship for many. As long as a taxpayer has a qualifying kid with a Social Security number that is good for work in the United States, they are eligible for the Child Tax Credit even if they don’t typically file a tax return.

Families with children may also qualify for the child and dependent care credit, which offers a maximum credit of up to 35% of $3,000 spent on care for one qualified person or up to $6,000 spent on care for two or more qualifying individuals.

This article will go in-depth on the Child Tax Credit, including its objective, requirements for eligibility, method of calculation, and potential advantages for families with kids. Families wanting to claim this benefit and lower their tax bill may find this in-depth article on the child tax credit to be a great resource.

Eligibility Criteria for Child Tax Credit

To be considered for the Child Tax Credit, taxpayers must have an income that meets a certain threshold. This credit is partially refundable, which means that if the credit amount exceeds the taxpayer’s liability, they may receive the excess as a reimbursement. The credit amount is based on the taxpayer’s income, with those who earn more receiving a smaller credit.

To claim the Child Tax Credit, the tax return must include the Social Security number of each eligible child. If the child does not have a Social Security number, the taxpayer can still claim the credit by obtaining an ITIN for the child.

It’s important to be aware that the Child Tax Credit is subject to annual changes, so taxpayers should check the latest information on the IRS website to stay informed on the eligibility criteria and benefits. Taxpayers with questions about the credit or their eligibility should also seek advice from a tax professional.

Calculating Child Tax Credit

The Child Tax Credit is partially refundable, which means that the taxpayer may receive a refund for the difference if the credit exceeds their liability. To determine the amount of the refundable credit, the taxpayer must complete Form 8812 and include it with their tax return.

In addition to the $2,000 credit per eligible child, there is also a $500 nonrefundable credit available for qualifying dependents who are not eligible for the full $2,000 credit. To claim this credit, taxpayers must complete Form 8901 and include it with their tax return.

The amount of the Child Tax Credit a taxpayer can receive is determined by their adjusted gross income (AGI). The credit is gradually reduced for taxpayers with AGIs above certain thresholds and is completely phased out for taxpayers with AGIs above certain higher thresholds. Taxpayers with AGIs below these thresholds may be eligible to receive the full $2,000 credit per eligible child.

Taxpayers need to understand the amount of the Child Tax Credit that they are eligible to receive, as well as the rules for claiming the credit, to maximize their tax benefits. Taxpayers who have questions about the Child Tax Credit should seek the advice of a tax professional.

Income Limits

It’s important to note that MAGI is calculated differently than adjusted gross income (AGI), and includes certain types of income that are excluded when determining Adjusted Gross Income (AGI). As a result, the MAGI thresholds for the Child Tax Credit are higher than the AGI thresholds for other tax benefits.

The phase-out of the Child Tax Credit occurs gradually, meaning that the credit is gradually reduced for taxpayers with MAGIs above the threshold until it is completely phased out for taxpayers with MAGIs above certain higher thresholds. For the tax year 2022, the credit is completely phased out for single filers with a MAGI above $220,000 and joint filers with a MAGI above $440,000.

The MAGI (Modified Adjusted Gross Income) limits and calculation guidelines must be understood by taxpayers to assess eligibility for the Child Tax Credit. It is advised to seek the advice of a tax expert if you have any questions concerning the MAGI thresholds or the Child Tax Credit.

Claiming Child Tax Credit

In addition to completing Form 1040 or Form 1040-SR, taxpayers who are eligible for the refundable portion of the Child Tax Credit must also complete Form 8812. This form is used to calculate the amount of the refundable credit that the taxpayer is eligible to receive, and must be included with the taxpayer’s tax return.

Accurate documentation and record-keeping of eligible children, income, and expenses are vital for taxpayers seeking to claim the full Child Tax Credit they are eligible for. Proper documentation also simplifies the process of answering any inquiries or requests for information from the IRS.

Taxpayers who are claiming the Child Tax Credit for the first time should carefully review the instructions and requirements for Form 1040 or Form 1040-SR, as well as Form 8812 if applicable. They should also consult a tax professional if they have any questions about the credit or their eligibility.

The Child Tax Credit can be a valuable benefit for taxpayers with children and can help to offset the costs of raising children. By understanding the eligibility criteria, income limits, and requirements for claiming credit, taxpayers can maximize their tax benefits and receive the support they need to provide for their families.

A Supplement to Child Tax Credit

Some states offer child tax benefit programs that are specific to certain groups of taxpayers, such as low-income families, families with children with disabilities, or military families. These programs may provide additional financial support to help these families cover the costs of raising children.

Taxpayers who are eligible for these programs may be able to receive a larger combined benefit from both the federal Child Tax Credit and the state program. However, it’s important to note that each program is different, and taxpayers should carefully review the eligibility requirements, benefit amounts, and application procedures for each program they are interested.

To claim tax benefits, taxpayers may be required to furnish supplementary documentation including evidence of residency, income, and the child’s age and citizenship status. To ensure they are fully aware of their state’s requirements and guidelines, taxpayers should consult their state tax department.


The child Tax Credit is an important tax benefit that can help parents and guardians offset the cost of raising children. By reducing tax liability and providing financial assistance, it can provide much-needed relief to families who are struggling to make ends meet. To determine eligibility and the amount of the credit, it may be necessary to provide proof of the child’s residency, citizenship, and the amount of earned income, which can also be determined by reviewing paycheck stubs. If you have dependents, it is important to understand your eligibility for Child Tax Credit and other tax benefits, so that you can take full advantage of the support available to you.