If you have children under age 18, it’s not too late to claim the 2021 Child Tax Credit, even if you don’t usually file taxes. Be sure to file a 2021 tax return in 2022 to claim the credit, which is worth $3,600 per child under age 6 and $3,000 per child aged 6-17. Learn more here.

Resources to help your community

Interested in occasional updates about the stimulus check (EIP)?
Sign up for our Google email group to get notified of major changes or share questions about challenges helping clients access payments.

Flyers for Food Pantries, Schools, Shelters, and Other Nonprofits and Government Agencies

If you are serving people in person, help your clients find this website by downloading a flyer below. Sign up to receive printed copies of a matching poster.

Training for Staff

Many low-income Illinois residents still haven't received their stimulus checks. Mobilizing trustworthy nonprofit and government staff to help people get their stimulus checks is one of the most effective things we can do. If your staff is fielding questions about stimulus checks or changes to tax credits, we can provide training to help them answer questions.

We hosted a stimulus checks training in June, 2021 - you can click here to watch a recording of the training.

The June 2021 webinar included:

  • Who is eligible for the first and second stimulus checks?
  • How to help clients get the stimulus payments by claiming the Recovery Rebate Credit on a 2020 tax return
  • Explore safe, affordable banking options with Bank On Chicago
  • Help clients explore different options for filing a tax return
  • Things to keep in mind for the 2021 tax season
  • Updated on the third stimulus check and the expanded Child Tax Credit for 2021

We also led two Child Tax Credit trainings in September, 2021:

Support for Digital Divide, Homeless, or Other High Barrier Populations

Filing a tax return online leads to faster processing time than mailing in a paper return to claim missing stimulus payments. If your clients don’t have computers, don’t have an address, or have another major barrier, you can walk them through the process. We have video and written guides for how to use the IRS Free File version of TurboTax to file a tax return online on our Tax Help page. Also, you can view the recording of the June 2021 training session for additional information.

If you are working with a client who cannot get online to file a tax return and must prepare and mail a paper return to the IRS, you can share our instructions for filing a paper return and also print a blank 2020 Form 1040 for them. These instructions are specific to someone who only received Social Security benefits in 2020 or who had no income in 2020.

Should someone file a full tax return or a simplified tax return?

f you are working with a client who needs to a) enroll in advance payments of the 2021 Child Tax Credit and/or b) recover missing stimulus money from the first two rounds of stimulus checks and who has not already filed a 2020 tax return, use this decision tree to help determine if the client should file a full tax return or a simplified tax return.

If your client should file a simplified return, please direct them to GetCTC.org for an easy way to prepare and electronically file their 2020 simplified tax return.

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