The Internal Revenue Service has notified more than 9 million Americans they could be entitled to receive extra money but a critical deadline is nearing.
In mid-October, the IRS began sending letters to those who appear to have qualified for a variety of tax benefits but did not claim them by filing a 2021 federal income tax return. Among those people 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.
The letter, IRS Commission Chuck Rettig explained, will remind people of their potential eligibility and the steps they need to take to claim the refunds.
“We encourage people who haven’t filed a tax return yet for 2021 to review these options. Even if they aren’t required to file a tax return, they may still qualify for several important credits,” Rettig said.
Many of the recipients of the IRS letter are individuals who aren’t required to file taxes due to low incomes. There’s no penalty for a refund claimed on a tax return filed after the regular April 2022 tax deadline, the IRS said, and the fastest and easiest way to get a refund is to file an accurate return electronically and choose direct deposit.
Nov. 17 deadline
To help people claim the benefits, IRS Free File will remain open an extra month this year – until Nov. 17. Available at IRS.gov/freefile, Free File enables people whose incomes are $73,000 or less to file a return online for free.
People can also visit ChildTaxCredit.gov 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 they may have missed—and the Child Tax Credit.