Government shutdown: could the December 15 child tax credit be affected?

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With another potential government shutdown looming, many Americans might wonder (again) how their monthly child tax credit payments will be affected. For now, it looks like advance payments due December 15 are safe – at least according to recent comments by Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen.

See: Taxes 2021: How the Child Tax Credit and Student Loans Could Reduce Your Total Refund
Find: Stimulus update: Child tax credit withdrawal deadline for 2021 is November 29

This is the case even though the U.S. government is expected to close on Dec. 3, unless Congress approves more funds to keep it running until the end of the year, CNBC reported. It’s the same scenario lawmakers faced in late September, when Congress approved a measure to fund the government until early December. As GOBankingRates reported at the time, that interim vote came just hours before the government ran out of cash.

Even though no such deal is reached this time around, Americans are still expected to receive their advance payments from the CTC. In a Nov. 16 letter to Congress, Yellen said the Treasury Department would be able to fund the government until Dec. 15 – the same day families are due to receive their last CTC advance payments for the year.

“I guess they will make the payment – not doing so would be very disruptive for many families,” Elaine Maag, senior research associate at the Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center, told CNBC.

See: Are Child Tax Credit Payments Taxable?
Find: Government shutdown 2021: Senate passes short-term debt ceiling bill and funds country until December

Beyond that, anyone can guess what will happen. President Joe Biden and the House Democrats have included a one-year extension of the enhanced CLC in their version of the Build Back Better plan, but the Senate could oppose that provision when it votes on the plan.

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About the Author

Vance Cariaga is a London-based writer, editor and journalist who previously held positions with Investor’s Business Daily, The Charlotte Business Journal and The Charlotte Observer. Her work has also appeared in Charlotte Magazine, Street & Smith’s Sports Business Journal and Business North Carolina magazine. He holds a BA in English from Appalachian State University and studied journalism at the University of South Carolina. His reporting has been recognized by the North Carolina Press Association, the Green Eyeshade Awards and AlterNet. In addition to journalism, he has worked in banking, accounting and restaurant management. A native of North Carolina who also writes fiction, Vance’s short story “Saint Christopher” placed second in the Writer’s Digest 2019 short story competition. Two of his short stories appear in With One Eye on the Cows, one anthology published by Ad Hoc Fiction in 2019. His first novel, Voodoo Hideaway, was published in 2021 by Atmosphere Press.


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