The White House sought Monday to raise awareness of the federal government’s new expanded child tax credit, which will start paying out monthly in July to families with children who are 17 years old and younger.
Vice President Kamala Harris spoke at a recreation center in Pittsburgh as part of a broader push to promote the program in partnership with churches, schools and other organizations.
Harris took the lead on the campaign during an event in Pennsylvania on Monday.
‘When more families know about how they can get the relief, that is how we will be able to lift our children out of poverty,’ Harris said.
Harris had previously been designated Biden’s ‘Border Czar’ but had come under criticism from Republicans for failing to actually visit the southern border.
‘We need to give ordinary families a break – a tax break – to help them with the cost of raising their kids,’ Biden said during remarks from the White House on Monday
President Biden outlined how child tax credit payments would be distributed from July 15th
With the child tax credits, the administration launched a website with details for potential recipients.
As part of President Joe Biden’s $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package, eligible families can receive as much as $3,600 for each child under the age of 6.
The tax credit will be $3,000 annually per child between the ages of 6 and 17.
The child tax credit was previously $2,000 meaning the rise to $3,600 is 80% while even the jump to $3,000 is a 50% increase in benefits.
The payments are to be made monthly, a first for the program. People can register for the program even if they did not fully file their taxes.
Usually, tax breaks for Americans with kids and dependents come one time a year – at tax times.
‘This tax cut will give our nation’s hardworking families with children a little more breathing room when it comes to putting food on the table, paying the bills, and making ends meet,’ President Biden said in a statement on Monday. ‘Nearly every working family with children is going to feel this tax cut make a difference in their lives, and we need to spread the word so that all eligible families get the full credit.’
The American Rescue Plan, signed by Biden in March, allows child tax credits of up to $3,600 per year to be distributed in monthly payments instead of annually for each child of couples earning under $112,500
The program is slated to expire after one year, though Biden has proposed extending it through 2025 with the ultimate goal of making it permanent.
The child tax credit payments, which will reach millions of American households, including 88% of children in the country, could have a lasting impact in reducing childhood poverty and boosting future earning potential a White House official said.
The expanded credits could cost roughly $100 billion a year.
Estimates from the IRS suggest that 39 million households accounting for nearly 9 in 10 U.S. children are already set to receive the payments.
Vice President Kamala Harris visited a summer classroom at Brookline Memorial Recreation Center, on Monday in Pittsburgh
Vice President Kamala Harris talks with bilingual early childhood education school CentroNia pupils Jayden Bello, left, and Celina Barrera, right, as they work on their project during a visit to the school. Harris talked about child tax credit during the visit
‘The American Rescue Plan is delivering critical tax relief to middle class and hard-pressed working families with children,’ the White House wrote in a statement on the news Monday. ‘With today’s announcement, about 90% of families with children will get this new tax relief automatically, starting in July.’
More than 65 million children nationwide – nearly 88 per cent of Americans under 17 – are set to receive the benefits without their parents needing to take any additional action.
This year, couples earning $150,000 or less can receive the full payments on the 15th of each month, in most cases by direct deposit, but some by paper check or debit cards. The highest benefits total $3,600 annually for children under 6 and $3,000 for those who are older.
Vice President Kamala Harris leans in for a photograph with Stella Quatrini, after Harris spoke about the child tax credit at Brookline Memorial Recreation Center in Pittsburgh
People listen to US Vice President Kamala Harris speak about the Child Tax Credit and economic recovery at the Brookline Memorial Recreation Center in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
The benefits diminish for individuals whose adjusted gross income is more than $75,000 or couples earning more than $150,000 – and the highest-income parents will receive none at all.
The IRS will determine eligibility based on the 2019 and 2020 tax years, but people will also be able to update their status through an online portal.
IRS officials will separately issue guidance for a paid leave tax credit, which would offset the cost to employers that offer paid sick and family leave because of events stemming from the coronavirus.
The credit would go to employers with fewer than 500 workers. The employers could receive as much as $17,110 for up to 10 days of paid sick leave and as many as 12 weeks of paid family leave.
Under the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan, Biden expanded child tax benefits for another year in the midst of the pandemic. Couples earning less than $112,500 can earn each month up to $300 per child 6 and under and $250 per child 6-17