Updated: Sep 27, 2021
Let's get into how exactly to claim missing tax credits such as the child tax credit and stimulus payments, specifically for people on SSI and SSDI. Now before I go any further, it’s useful to note that Social Security excludes the Child Tax Credit as income and resources for 12 months when considering a person’s eligibility for Supplemental Security Income and monthly SSI payment amounts. Also, Social Security does not count Economic Impact Payments and certain other disaster assistance against your eligibility for SSI or your SSI amount.
So first of all, how can you claim missing COVID-19 economic impact payments (or otherwise known as stimulus payments). Now the IRS has already issued stimulus payments to most individuals who get Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Social Security retirement, disability, or survivors benefits. But if you did not receive a first or second stimulus for you or someone in your household including dependents, or if you got less than the full amount, you may be eligible to claim the 2020 Recovery Rebate Tax Credit by using the brand new Non-Filer Sign-up Tool as soon as possible. Previously, people had to use the IRS non-filers tool to claim missing payments. However, that tool is no longer available for use.
The White House and the Department of the Treasury has collaborated with the non-profit organization, Code for America, to create a brand new non filers tool, located at getctc.org. It is available in English and Spanish, and you can use it on your computer, tablet, or smartphone. A link to the Non-filer’s tool will be provided in the description. Now although at first glance it may look like a tool only for the child tax credit, this updated tool serves to help eligible individuals who don't normally file income tax returns. And helps them register for the up to $1400 third round of stimulus payments, the 2020 Recovery Rebate Credit for the first two rounds of stimuluses, as well as the child tax credit, which provides up to $300 per month per child under age 6, and up to $250 per month per child ages 6 to 17. So it’s a tool that encompasses all types of missing payments for 2020 and 2021 for non-filers.
As for the COVID-19 stimulus, while most Social Security recipients were paid the stimulus automatically, family members were not paid automatically unless you previously filed a 2019 or 2020 tax return, or used the Non-Filer tool. However, using the Non-Filer Sign-up Tool will create a 2020 tax return for you automatically. The IRS will process your tax return and send any payments to you, an eligible spouse, and any eligible dependents.
As for the child tax credit, you can receive payments of up to $300 per child every month starting in July 2021 through December 2021. The way it works is the US Treasury and the IRS will issue advance payments of one half of the estimated 2021 Child Tax Credit to eligible taxpayers who have a primary home in the United States for more than half the year. However, you will also need to file a tax return in 2022 to receive the remaining monthly payments next year. The IRS will calculate the payment based on a person's 2020 tax return, if filed, or if they used the Non-Filer Sign-up Tool.
After you use the tool, you don't need to do anything else to get missing stimulus payments and the advance payments of the 2021 Child Tax Credit, if eligible. The IRS will not combine your payments for various tax credits and will instead send you separate payments for the missing stimulus and advance payments of the 2021 Child Tax Credit. But please remember that you must use the Non-Filer Sign-up Tool as soon as possible, as the deadline for late filers is less than one month away, on October 15th.