Free File Deadline Extended

Free File to stay open until November 17.

More than 9 million individuals and families who appear to qualify for a variety of key tax benefits did not claim them by filing a 2021 federal income tax return. Many in this group may be eligible to claim some or all of the 2021 Recovery Rebate Credit, the Child Tax Credit, the Earned Income Tax Credit, and other tax credits depending on their personal and family situation.

There is still time to claim these benefits. Free File, available without charge and only at, will remain open for an extra month this year, until November 17, 2022. Free File enables those whose incomes are $73,000 or less to file a return online for free using brand-name software.

You can also visit to file a 2021 income tax return. Individuals whose incomes are below $12,500 and couples whose incomes are below $25,000 may be able to file a simple tax return to claim the 2021 Recovery Rebate Credit—which covers any stimulus payment amounts from 2021 you may have missed—and the Child Tax Credit. Individuals do not need to have children in order to use to find the right filing solution for them.

Further Details on These Expanded Tax Benefits

The three credits include:

  • An expanded Child Tax Credit: Families can claim this credit, even if they received monthly advance payments during the last half of 2021. The total credit can be as much as $3,600 per child.
  • A more generous Earned Income Tax Credit: The law boosted the EITC for childless workers. There are also changes that can help low- and moderate-income families with children. The credit can be as much as $1,502 for workers with no qualifying children, $3,618 for those with one child, $5,980 for those with two children and $6,728 for those with at least three children.
  • The Recovery Rebate Credit: Those who missed out on last year’s third round of Economic Impact Payments (EIP3) may be eligible to claim the RRC. Often referred to as stimulus payments, this credit can also help eligible people whose EIP3 was less than the full amount, including those who welcomed a child in 2021. The maximum credit is $1,400 for each qualifying adult, plus $1,400 for each eligible child or adult dependent.

Besides these three credits, many filers may also qualify for two other benefits with a tax return filed for 2021:

An increased Child and Dependent Care Credit: Families who pay for daycare so they can work or look for work can get a tax credit worth up to $4,000 for one qualifying person and $8,000 for two or more qualifying persons.

A deduction for gifts to charity: Most tax-filers who take the standard deduction can deduct eligible cash contributions they made during 2021. Married couples filing jointly can deduct up to $600 in cash donations and individuals can deduct up to $300 in donations. In addition, itemizers who make large cash donations often qualify to deduct the full amount in 2021.

Helpful Reminders

You should have all your year-end 2021 tax statements in hand before filing your 2021 return. Besides all W-2s and 1099s, this includes two statements issued by the IRS — Letter 6419, showing your total advance Child Tax Credit payments, and Letter 6475, showing your total EIP3 payments. You can also use IRS Online Account to see the total amounts of your third round of Economic Impact Payments or advance Child Tax Credit payments. For married couples who received joint payments, each spouse will need to sign into their own account to retrieve their separate amounts.

A Final Note

Claiming these credits has no effect your eligibility for federal benefits like Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), and the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC).  Claiming these credits also has no effect on an individual’s immigration status or their ability to get a green card or immigration benefits.

For assistance with these and other tax details, contact your local tax professional.

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Stay safe. Stay well.

Bayshore CPA’s, P.A. are your local Certified Public Accountants

and Tax Resolution Specialists conveniently located

in Mooresville, North Carolina

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