EITC and CTC:  What Does It Mean to Me?

January 4th, 2017

EITC and CTC:  What Does It Mean to Me?

If you are a taxpayer who have qualified for the EITC and CTC in the past, you know that EITC stands for the earned income tax credit and CTC stands for the child tax credit.  If you qualify or think you qualify for these credits, there is some important information you should know before filing taxes in 2017.  There will be potential refund delays for those who qualify for the credits in 2017.

In an effort to reduce identity theft, Congress passed legislation that will allow the IRS to delay tax refunds that include the EITC and advance child tax credit (ACTC), which is the refundable part of the CTC, until February 15, 2017.  This gives the IRS time to verify income on the tax returns and reduce the number of tax returns with stolen identities and errors.

The delay will apply to the total tax refund (refund of taxes paid and credits) for all taxpayers who claim the EITC or ACTC. These refunds will not be released by the IRS prior to February 15th.  If the IRS finds discrepancies between income reported on tax returns and income reported by employers, the delay in receiving refunds can be longer.  Additional delays are not expected if taxpayers file their tax returns after February 15th.  If you don’t claim the EITC or ACTC, you don’t have to be concerned about the potential delays as the refunds of taxpayers who don’t claim these credits refunds won’t be delayed.

This will be the first year that tax returns claiming the EITC and ACTC will be delayed, but it is supposed to be a permanent change.  If you claim the EITC or ACTC, there isn’t ANYTHING you can do to receive your refund before February 15th.  Filing your taxes early will not allow you to get your refund earlier than February 15th.

Categories: Extension and OutreachFinancial Planning, Housing and Consumer EconomicsExtensionUndergraduateFinancial PlanningFinance
Tags: potential refund delays, filing in 2017, eitc, earned income tax credit, ctc, child tax credit

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