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United Way hosting event to help families apply for Advance Child Tax Credit

The event is free and will be held Saturday at Goodwill on S. Port Ave.
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Posted at 2:46 PM, Jul 09, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-09 19:33:51-04

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Next week, the IRS will begin sending out advance payments for Child Tax Credit to help families in need.

The payments will begin July 15, and be half of the total credit amount for 2021, the other half will have to be claimed on a 2021 income tax return.

Those who automatically qualify will not have to do anything to receive the tax credit, but there are people who may be eligible for the advance, but not know it.

To help with that, United Way of the Coastal Bend is hosting an event Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. to help families submit their information to the IRS, to qualify for the Advance Child Tax Credit payments.

The event is free, and will be held at the Goodwill located at 2961 S. Port Ave. in Corpus Christi, in conjunction with the Coastal Bend Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Coalition.

People who may qualify but not know it are those who did file taxes in 2019 or 2020, or those who do not make enough money to file taxes.

“There are still people who might not know they qualify, because they haven’t filed taxes. So, by them coming in this Saturday, we’ll be able to see if they qualify for the child credit,” said Selene Butanda, the VITA site coordinator.

The Advance Child Tax Credit payments only apply to the 2021 tax year, but were brought about to help families recovering from the pandemic. Butanda said her family will receive the payments, and they are needed, since her and her husband lost work due to the pandemic.

“It’s a relief, because it’s a way of helping me pay some of my bills,” she said. “I felt like, okay, we’re going to be able to pass through this, move forward, and try to overcome the damages the pandemic brought to us.”

Sara Yanez is a mother of four in Corpus Christi. The pandemic had an impact on her family.

“Having the children stay at home was quite dramatic for my work hours, I had to limit them. My daughter had finished high school, so it wasn’t easy for her to matriculate because she wasn’t able to get in college in person, she wasn’t comfortable being remote. So, that was a little bit of a hard time,” she said.

Yanez said hearing about the Advance Child Tax Credit was welcome new.

“I was in shock, because we’re all so used to having to scrimp and save during these times, and having something available to us that is usually available at the end of the year, so when your car breaks down, it’s a little bit more convenient to have that money that you’ve earned available to you, so that you can fix your car, and have the ability to go to and from your job,” she said.

Yanez said the payments will be helpful to many families across the country.

“I believe that debt burden has increased for many families during the pandemic, and I believe this might lead a lot of families out of destitution, and it might bridge them into a better financial standing,” she said.

Saturday’s event is free, and no registration is required. To make the event as smooth as possible, United Way of the Coastal Bend request families bring the following documents:

Those attending the event who have tax filing obligations but have not filed a 2019 or 2020 tax return should bring:

  • Photo ID
  • Social Security card or individual taxpayer identification number (ITIN) letter for all individuals listed on the return
  • W-2s, 1099s (including 1099-G for unemployment received if applicable) and all other tax-related documents for 2020
  • Form 1095-A, B or C Health Insurance Coverage Statement
  • All 1098 E&T forms for educational expenses
  • Childcare provider name, address, phone number and tax ID number
  • Voided check if using direct deposit for refund
  • Copy of your previous tax return (if possible)

For those not required to file a tax return should be prepared to provide their:

  • Full name
  • Current mailing address
  • Email address
  • Date of birth
  • Valid Social Security numbers (or other taxpayer IDs) for you and your dependents
  • Bank account number, type and routing number, if you have one
  • Identity Protection Personal Identification Number (IP PIN) you received from the IRS earlier this year, if you have one