May 14, 2021

Dear Neighbor,

I wanted to take a moment to share with you a brief update about the American Rescue Plan and the expanded Child Tax Credit, which will provide families with regular monthly payments throughout the year to help with the costs of food, child care, diapers, healthcare, clothing and more. As the federal tax filing deadline approaches this Monday, May 17th, I urge all Marylanders to file their federal taxes to ensure all families who qualify receive the new advance monthly Child Tax Credit payments. 

Starting as soon as July, most families with children can receive up to $300 per month for every child under six and up to $250 per month for every child under 18. To ensure you receive these critical monthly payments if you qualify, please be sure you file a 2020 tax return by the May 17th federal deadline - even if you don't have earnings to report or don't normally file. You can get free help preparing and filing your taxes here.

Please see below for more information about how this tax credit will help the 8th District, eligibility guidelines, the amount in the monthly payments, and how you can receive free help filing your taxes. 

How does the Child Tax Credit Help 8th District Families?

  • 110,500 children in MD-08 could benefit from the advance monthly payments. That’s 62.8% of all children in the District.
  • 36,700 households in MD-08 could get an average total benefit of $2,500.
  • 5,600 children in MD-08 will be lifted out of poverty, including 2,100 kids under the age of 6.
  • 900 children in MD-08 will be lifted out of deep poverty.
  • Families with children in poverty will receive an average total benefit of $3,900.

Who Qualifies for the Child Tax Credit Advance Monthly Payments?

  • Families will qualify for a full credit if their income is below $75,000 for single filers, $112,000 for people filing as head of household, or $150,000 for people who are married and filing jointly.
  • To be eligible, children must:
    • Have a Social Security Number;
    • Live with you for at least half of the year; 
    • Be under age 18 as of December 31, 2021; and
    • Be claimed on your tax return.
  • Children are eligible if they are biological children, adopted children, stepchildren, half-siblings, foster children, grandchildren, nieces or nephews, or certain other relatives who are dependents. The adult filing taxes must have a Social Security Number or an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number. 

How Much are the Child Tax Credit Advance Monthly Payments?

  • The American Rescue Plan expanded the Child Tax Credit from $2,000 per child to up to $3,600 per child for children ages 0 to 5 and $3,000 per child for children ages 6 to 17.
  • The American Rescue Plan also authorized advance monthly payments of the Child Tax Credit, rather than at just tax time. From July 2021 through December 2021 qualifying families can get up to:
    •  $300 a month per child for children under 5.
    • $250 a month per child for children ages 6 to 17.

How Can Families Get Help Preparing and Filing their Taxes for Free?

  • The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program is open to those who earned $57,000 or less in 2020.
    • For VITA in Frederick County, click here.
    • For VITA in Carroll County, click here.
    • For VITA in Montgomery County, click here.
  • File taxes for free online through the IRS Free File program here
  • If the tax filer is aged 50 or older, click here to use an AARP tool to find free tax help nearby.

Today, I named United Way of Frederick County President and CEO Ken Oldham the 8th District Local Hero of the week in recognition of the organization's free tax assistance and other efforts to connect working families with the Child Tax Credit and other tax breaks that were included in the American Rescue Plan. You can watch our discussion here to learn more about the organization's work and free tax services.

As always, I encourage all 8th District residents to connect with me on FacebookTwitter, or Instagram. If you need help with a federal agency and want to request assistance from my staff, please complete the online request form here, and my District Office will be in touch. 

All Best,


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