There’s no denying the impact of the Expanded Child Tax Credit (CTC) payments that parents received during the second half of 2021, in which parents received hundreds of dollars a month per child and a lump sum at tax time to the annual tune of about $3,600 per kid total. The payments slashed child hunger, lifted more than four million children out of poverty, and improved the lives of countless others, allowing families to purchase necessities, pay down debt, or start a savings account.
But despite the wishes of President Joe Biden and all but one Democratic Senator that payments continue for several more years, any plans for an extension were stonewalled by West Virginia Democrat Joe Manchin, leaving millions of American families to plummet back into the depths of food insecurity, poverty, and crushing debt.
Some states, however, have taken the reins after the federal government failed to come to an agreement on how best to support American families. These states will help resident families weather the current economic storm by offering programs similar to the CTC. Here’s what to know.
What States Are Offering Monthly Payments to Families?
- California: Families can get a $1,000 state tax credit or state tax refund if they earn less than $25,000 per year, and a reduced credit amount if they earn between $25,000 and $50,000. The credit is only available to families with children under the age of 6.
- Colorado: Families with children under the age of six will receive a credit of 5% to 30% of the federal tax credit. The amount is based on income and will begin in January 2023.
- Connecticut: Families are entitled to a rebate of $250 per child for up to three children. Income is capped at $100,000 for single filers, $160,000 for heads of household, and $200,000 for joint filers.
- Florida: Families can receive one-time payments of $450 if they qualify for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families or Guardian Assistance Program, as well as foster families and relative/nonrelative caregivers.
- Idaho: Details are still emerging, but it seems like families with children under age 17 will receive a nonrefundable credit of $205 per child.
- Maine: Families will receive a state tax credit of $300 for each dependent who qualifies for the federal Child Tax Credit.
- Massachusetts: Families will receive a credit of $180 for one dependent or $360 for two or more. Credits are available for children under the age of 12, adults over the age of 65, and any dependent with a disability.
- New Jersey: Families with children under age 6 and who earn less than $30,000 per year are eligible for a state tax credit of $500 per child.
- New Mexico: Any family with minor children is eligible for an income-based tax credit of $75 to $175 per child. The program will run from 2023 through 2031.
- New York: Families can get a tax credit for 33% of the amount of the federal Child Tax Credit plus the Additional Child Tax Credit or $100 per qualifying child, whichever is greater.
- North Carolina: Families can receive a state tax deduction of up to $2,500 per child based on filing status and reported income.
- Oklahoma: Families who earn less than $100,000 per year will be eligible for a credit equal to 5% of the federal Child Tax Credit.
- Rhode Island: Families will receive a tax rebate of up to $250 per child for up to three children. Income caps of $100,000 for single filers and $200,000 for married filers apply.
- Vermont: Families that earn less than $125,000 are eligible for a credit of $1,000 per child under the age of 5.
What About Renewing the Child Tax Credit?
There are a few drafts of CTC bills passing through Congress, but the only one to have any real traction was sponsored by Republican Senator Mitt Romney. Romney’s plan, which would pay $350 per month for children up to age 5 (or $4,200 a year) and $250 for children aged 6 to 17 (or $3,000 a year) has caveats that would exclude the neediest families. It would also do away with many of the social safety net and support programs those families depend on to survive.
To qualify for Romney’s plan, families must earn at least $10,000 and be able to file taxes. And, since it’s touted as a “deficit-neutral” program, the funds would be siphoned from programs like the Earned Income Tax Credit, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, Head of Household tax filing status, the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit, and the State and Local Tax Deduction — all of which are designed to help provide funds and support for the most vulnerable American families.
Congressional progressives are hoping to come up with a suitable compromise by the end of the year, but analysts aren’t hopeful. Until then, it looks like the burden will be on individual states to help families make it through the current economic hardship.