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Want $ 16,000 back for daycare, after-school programs, babysitting? You need to know 7 things



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You can get a childcare discount for expenses.

Sarah Tew / CNET

While you may be looking forward to it new child discount that come in July, did you know that you can claim tax credits for childcare costs? It’s called the Child and Dependent Care Credit, and it was temporarily expanded over the course of March US Rescue Plan Act.

These discounts are not the same as the revised child discount from up to $ 3,600. Instead, you can claim any eligible expenses – up to $ 16,000 – related to childcare, such as a daycare or home care provider that pays you to look after your child while you are at work. You can declare up to 50% of your expenses, depending on your income (we explain below).

We will tell you everything you need to know about how childcare tax credits work. Use our calculator for child discount to see how much you are getting and how to spend your money. Also make sure that you qualify for the payments, like your family members. In addition, you can save as follows up to $ 50,000 through one-time COVID credits and benefits in 2021.

What exactly is the childcare allowance?

The childcare credit is intended for parents to declare expenses for childcare throughout the year. For example, if you work and pay for services such as childcare or a babysitter for your children. These costs can be declared when you file your tax return each year.

How much you can get from the extended childcare credit has changed for the expenses incurred this year. For example, the maximum amount you could claim for multiple children in previous years was $ 6,000. Under the new incentive law, you can now claim up to $ 16,000 in childcare costs for multiple children.

What counts as a childcare provider?

Any organization or person that provides care to your dependent is counted as a childcare provider, as long as you pay them. According to Elaine Maag, principal investigator at the Municipal Institute, the IRS has relatively lax rules about health care providers. Here are some examples.

Healthcare providers

What qualifies What does not qualify

Childcare expenses

Your spouse

Programs for before and after school care

The parent of the dependent

Day camp

Transportation to and from healthcare providers

Babysitters, nannies, housekeepers

Parents paying their babysitters in cash “under the table” should know that it is risky to claim the childcare tax credit as the income may not be claimed or documented by the provider.

Claiming the child and dependent care credit may not be easy – here’s what to do now

You won’t actually claim the deduction until you file your 2021 tax next year (in 2022). For now, keep a detailed record of all childcare expenses – that is, any receipts you receive from daycare centers or after-school programs showing that the expenses have been paid. You then complete form 2441 (PDF) and enclose it with your tax return form 1040.

You must report the name, address, and TIN (can be the social security number or employer identification number) of the health care provider upon your return, according to the IRS. You can use Form W-10 to request the information you need from your healthcare provider.

Note that the Child and Dependent Care Credit Form is built into tax software, such as TurboTax and H&R Block. For example, it may ask whether you have a child under the age of 13 and whether you paid for childcare during the year.






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How much money can you claim per child for the childcare credits?

For expenses this year, you can claim up to $ 8,000 for one child or up to $ 16,000 for multiple dependents under the American Rescue Plan Act, according to Garrett Watson, senior policy analyst at The Tax Foundation.

Normally, parents can claim up to $ 3,000 for one child or up to $ 6,000 for two or more children.

Again, this is different from the 2021 child discount – those benefits will start this year. You can get between $ 500 and $ 3,600 starting in July.

Is there an income limit to qualify for the credits?

Yes, from a household adjusted gross income should be less than $ 125,000, Watson said. If your income is higher than that, your tax credit will lapse at 50%. For example, instead of $ 8,000, you now get $ 4,000. The credit rate falls back to 20% for people with an AGI of $ 183,000, and stays 20% until income exceeds $ 400,000.

Credit interest eventually expires in full for those who earn $ 438,000 or more.

With the original childcare tax credits, credit rates would decrease to 35% if income exceeded $ 125,000 and 25% if income exceeded $ 183,000.

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Keep all receipts with information about the childcare you paid for.

Sarah Tew / CNET

What are the qualification rules for dependents?

They are quite broad. To be eligible, according to the IRS, dependents must:

  • Be younger than 13 years old, or
  • Unable to take care of themselves (if 13 or older). For example, if you have a spouse or an elderly dependent who is disabled and unable to take care of themselves – and have lived with you for more than half the year – you can claim the tax credits for them, or
  • Being physically or mentally incapable of self-care – even if their income was $ 4,300 or more – and
  • Get a tax identification number, such as a social security number.

Can more than one parent claim the tax credit? What about children of divorced or divorced parents?

No. The rules are similar to those for the child discount: only the parent who has parental authority can claim the childcare discount.

If you’re married, both parents must work – or receive unemployment benefits – to be eligible for the credit, Maag said. And if you are in school, you can still earn credits.

For more ways to get money this year, see here how to save up to $ 50,000 in 2021 with one-time COVID credits and benefits. Here is also how you spend the money from your child discount and how to unsubscribe from the monthly child discount.






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