Safety Net

Illinois Child Tax Credit Could Be Coming Soon — Here’s Who Would Qualify

A new bill proposed by Illinois state law makers could put a permanent child tax credit in the hands of parents.

Originally Published: 
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Thanks to state lawmakers, families in Illinois may have a little extra cash soon in the form of a state-run child tax credit.

The move is not without precedent. States across the country have worked to instate some sort of family tax credit since the dissolution of the federal Expanded Tax Credit in December 2021. The pandemic-era Expanded CTC provided families with up to $3,600 per child paid in monthly installments from February to December of that year. Despite its overwhelming success and bipartisan support, an extension of the Expanded Child Tax Credit was stonewalled by Senate Republicans and sole Democratic holdout, West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin as part of President Biden’s stalled American Rescue Plan.

Who Would Qualify For The State Child Tax Credit If It Became Law?

The bill introduced to the state legislature would provide families earning less than $75,000 and single taxpayers earning less than $50,000 a $700 state income tax credit for each child under the age of 17 in the state of Illinois.

"Working parents are struggling worse than ever before. It is time for the state to create a permanent Child Tax Credit that puts money back into the pockets of parents in Illinois so that parents can take care of their children and communities can begin to recover," said bill co-sponsor Illinois State Sen. Mike Simmons (D-Chicago).

What Can These Child Tax Credits Do?

The federal monthly child tax credit payments were credited with lifting 4 million children out of poverty, and it’s estimated that after the payments were stopped, nearly that many children lapsed back into poverty and food insecurity. They are also associated with better mental health for parents and families and helped families pay bills, save money, and afford food.

Will We Get A Federal Child Tax Credit For 2023?

In the 2023 State of the Union Address in early February, the President repeated his call to bring back the child tax credit. “Let’s also restore the full Child Tax Credit, which gave tens of millions of parents some breathing room and cut child poverty in half, to the lowest level in history,” said the President, adding, “When we do all of these things, we increase productivity. We increase economic growth.”

Before the end of 2022, there was talk that Republicans and Democrats were on the cusp of an agreement regarding monthly tax credit payments, although the program would look quite different from the 2021 program. Unfortunately, the two sides were unable to compromise, and any mention of family safety net income was left out of the budget. Since then, Republicans have gained control of the House, and though Democrats have control of the Senate, the margin is slim, making any rebirth of the program highly unlikely despite continued support from the President of the United States and families across the political spectrum.

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