Wednesday, June 30, 2021

Advanced Child Tax Credit Update Post

This is the post that I will use to provide details on changes to the Advanced Child Tax Credit and the IRS Update Portal (CTCUP).

The original post, with all the details of the law is HERE.

I will update this post as necessary and will let Facebook followers of my Everyday Taxes page know when I make changes. Please follow this blog to see my other posts.

11/10/2021 Update: You can now update your direct deposit information and expected 2021 Adjusted Gross Income on the Update Portal (link at bottom of post). You can also view your payments here. 

They have added a tool for determining your eligibility for the payments and a non-filer portal to receive payments. This is mainly for people with children but no income.

8/22/2021 Update: You can now update your mailing address for checks on the Update Portal (link at bottom of this post)

7/18/2021 Update: I'm adding this because it can get confusing between the expanded Child Tax Credit where you get and EXTRA $1000 or $1600 for each child depending on their age as long as you make less than the $150,000/$112,500/$72,000 MFJ/HH/Single income limits, and the NORMAL $2000 that you get based on the old rules. The total for people making below the limits is $3000 or $3600, but $2000 of that is EXACTLY the same rules as 2020. Here's the thing: Even if you don't qualify for the extra money, you still get an advance of half of the amount you qualified for based on your 2020 (or 2019) tax return. So if you got Child Tax Credit in 2020, you WILL get six advance payments in July through December. These payments will be reconciled on your 2021 tax return, so if you didn't qualify for the extra money, and everything is the same in 2021 as in 2020, your refund will be lower by HALF of the Child Tax Credit you got (or exactly the amount of your advance payments - which is easier to figure).

7/17/21 Update: First column is month, second column is the last date to unenroll for the payment date in the 3rd column.


Both spouses on a joint return must unenroll or you will still get half the payment.

7/15/21 Update:

First batch of Advance payments sent to around 35 million taxpayers. 86% by direct deposit posted on 7/15. Mailed checks will be there shortly. Payments were made to those filing a 2019 or 2020 tax return, or who used the non-filer tool before 6/28. Filings after 6/28 will be reflected on the August payment. Here is the IRS news release:

7/5/21 Update:

The IRS CTCUP will now allow you to update your bank account information if it has changed. It is too late to make changes to the July payment, but you can make changes for the August and later payments.

6/30/21 Update:

The IRS Child Tax Credit Update Portal is now live and has options to opt out of the advanced payments, and to see the status of any payments made. It will also tell you if you are eligible to receive advance payments. Since no payments have actually been sent, the payment status provides no results right now. The opt out function does work, though we won't know for sure until the first payment isn't made. It appears that you might need to opt out at least two weeks in advance of a payment to ensure it is stopped.

The option to update bank information will not be live until August and options for changing children and income will come later.

If you don't already have an IRS account, you will need to get one by verifying your identity using It gives you options if you can't use, but they appear to be difficult and clunky. The process is somewhat complicated, but doable. When I attempted to do it with my phone right after it became available, it wouldn't accept my ID information - though I was at a remote location with spotty connectivity. On 6/29 I walked a client through the process using a laptop and phone live and they were able to access it, though it took two tries to get it to accept the ID picture. 

The easiest way to go through the process is using a cell phone with access to your email and texts. We used a picture of the driver's license that was taken, cropped and saved prior to using the process, but you can do it along the way. The process involves verifying your email, clicking text links to upload photos, and using video chat to scan your actual face. You end up clicking email or text links to new windows and then going back to previous windows. Since the process can vary a bit, I'm not going to go in to the step by step, but I can say that a GOOD ID picture is critical, and I suspect changes to facial hair from the picture might be problematic.

I am going to pass on information I receive from clients based on their experiences to provide best practices.

Here is a link to the IRS entry page for the update portal: IRS CTCUP

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