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Congressman Neal Celebrates Child Tax Credit at Square One

Congressman Richard E. Neal, Chairman of the House Committee on Ways and Means visited Springfield’s Square One on Monday morning to celebrate the success of the expanded Child Tax Credit in the American Rescue Plan and bring awareness to the monthly payments that will begin arriving for eligible families in July.

Square One’s President and CEO Dawn DiStefano, Board Members, parents, and staff joined together to discuss how this will positively affect hardworking families here in the Greater Springfield community and across our country.

“The American Rescue Plan delivered the immediate relief our country needed to get through the darkest days of the pandemic and is providing the sustained support for the better days that we know are coming,” said Congressman Neal. “I am so proud of the work we did on the Ways and Means Committee to ensure that this tax credit was included in the bill so that parents do not have to choose between putting food on their table or gas in their car. Now, every month, millions of families will receive more meaningful support thanks to the expanded Child Tax Credit and nearly 90 percent of our nation’s children will benefit from this critical lifeline.”

In the First District of Massachusetts, 85.8% of children will receive this benefit with the average benefit for the qualifying 44,000 households totaling $2,800. This expanded and improved credit will lift 8,300 children in western and central Massachusetts out of poverty.

“Working families endured an overwhelming amount of stress throughout the pandemic,” says DiStefano. “As parents throughout our community work towards stabilizing their families, these funds will provide them with much-needed relief for essentials such as high-quality child care, nutritious food, and a healthy home environment.”

“As parents to two school-age children, my husband and I did a lot of juggling over the past year,” says Melissa Blissett, Square One’s Vice President of Family Services. “Although we were fortunate to remain employed and our income was not impacted by the crisis, our expenses for things such as child care, transportation and food increased dramatically. This was the case for many of the working parents I know.”

Square One currently provides early learning services to over 500 infants, toddlers and school-age children each day; and family support services to 1,500 families each year, as they work to overcome the significant challenges in their lives.


How Much Is the Child Tax Credit Expansion from the American Rescue Plan?

The American Rescue Plan expanded the Child Tax Credit 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 through December 2021.  Beginning in July and running through December, qualifying families can get up to:  

  • $300 a month per child for children ages 0 to 5.  
  • $250 a month per child for children ages 6 to 17.  

Families will get their remaining expanded Child Tax Credit when they file their 2021 tax return.  

Who Qualifies? 

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. 

How Do I Get My Payment? 

  • Nearly all hardworking families should get their monthly payments automatically beginning July 15th with no further action required. If you’ve filed tax returns for 2019 or 2020, or if you signed up to receive a stimulus check from the Internal Revenue Service, you will get this tax relief automatically. You do not need to sign up or take any action. 
  • Families who did not file a tax return for 2019 or 2020 and who did not use the IRS Non-filers tool last year to sign up for the Economic Impact Payments, should go online and use the IRS Child Tax Credit Non-filer Sign-up Tool to sign up today. 
  • Families who got their refunds from the IRS through direct deposit will get these payments in their bank account around the 15th of every month until the end of 2021. People who don’t use direct deposit will receive their payment by mail around the same time. 
  • Families will be able to determine their eligibility, check the status of their payments and more at later this month.   

Remember: Watch for Scams 

According to “The IRS urges everyone to be on the lookout for scams related to both Advance Child Tax Credit payments and Economic Impact Payments. The IRS emphasized that the only way to get either of these benefits is by either filing a tax return with the IRS or registering online through the Non-filer Sign-up tool, exclusively on Any other option is a scam. 

Watch out for scams using email, phone calls or texts related to the payments. Be careful and cautious: The IRS never sends unsolicited electronic communications asking anyone to open attachments or visit a non-governmental web site.” 

Page last updated:  Tuesday, March 1, 2022 01:32 pm