The new, expanded, and more generous child tax credit passed as part of Joe Biden’s American Rescue Plan is better than the old one in a lot of ways—it’s more generous and fully refundable, for instance. But it’s the advance monthly payments paid in cash, the third of which makes its way into mailboxes and bank accounts today, that are giving working parents the regular cash infusions they can really use. And now, the third payment out of six monthly payments (before a lump sum of cash gets paid out to parents at the tax-filing time) is making its way to parents’ bank accounts across the country.
Here’s what you need to know about the latest payment, including how to make sure you receive it, especially if you don’t file taxes. Because if you’re not taking advantage of the payments, you aren’t just leaving money on the table — you’re denying yourself a nice little pick me up in the middle of every month.