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Do this within the next week and you’ll get your monthly stimulus checks faster

Published Aug 24th, 2021 1:22PM EDT
child tax credit portal
Image: Pamela Au/Adobe

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The IRS shared an important update in recent days that anyone currently receiving monthly stimulus checks from the tax agency will definitely want to know. It involves a new feature added to the child tax credit portal on the IRS website. A feature that lets recipients get their new monthly payments much faster than they might otherwise have gotten them.

This update, by the way, is relevant for those of you who’ve been getting the child tax credit payments. The monthly checks include a few hundred dollars for each eligible child in your household, and they will keep coming through mid-December. The vast majority of recipients are getting these checks as electronic direct deposits into their bank accounts. But many people are also getting them in the form of paper checks in the mail.

IRS updates child tax credit portal

Essentially, this update to the portal makes it much easier to update your address. Which provides for a more seamless flow of the stimulus checks to you and ensures an uninterrupted delivery. Head over to the IRS website to read the update in full. It explains, in part: “The Internal Revenue Service has launched a new feature allowing any family receiving monthly Child Tax Credit payments to quickly and easily update their mailing address using the Child Tax Credit Update Portal.

“This feature will help any family that chooses to receive their payment by paper check avoid mailing delays or even having a check returned as undeliverable.”

Here, by the way, is a reminder of where we are in the child tax credit process. Thus far, two of those monthly checks have been sent out. One in July, as well as another earlier this month. The next check is scheduled to go out three weeks from Wednesday, on September 15. And then there will be a final three after that.

The clock is ticking

One thing that’s important to note about this child tax credit portal update is that there’s a time element involved. In order for your change to take effect for the check going out in September, you need to make your changes before midnight Eastern Time on Monday, August 30. If you do that, your September 15 child tax credit check should be good to go.

“Families can still make changes after that date,” the IRS says, “but their request will not be effective until the next scheduled monthly payment.”

Additionally, there are a few other unrelated points the IRS also decided to share in tandem with this update. One is that the tax agency will mail out a year-end summary (Letter 6419) that taxpayers should watch out for. If they received the child tax credit checks, that is. Which, again, is all the more reason why having the right address on file with the tax agency is important.

Families will need Letter 6419 to accurately fill out their 2021 federal income tax return next year. “This is important because, for most families, the advance payments they are receiving during 2021 cover only half of the total credit,” the IRS says. “They will claim the remaining portion on their 2021 tax return.”

Andy Meek Trending News Editor

Andy Meek is a reporter based in Memphis who has covered media, entertainment, and culture for over 20 years. His work has appeared in outlets including The Guardian, Forbes, and The Financial Times, and he’s written for BGR since 2015. Andy's coverage includes technology and entertainment, and he has a particular interest in all things streaming.

Over the years, he’s interviewed legendary figures in entertainment and tech that range from Stan Lee to John McAfee, Peter Thiel, and Reed Hastings.