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Kokua Line: Is a child born in 2021 eligible for advance Child Tax Credit payments?

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Question: Regarding the Child Tax Credit, how do we report a qualifying child born in May 2021? has a reporting tool for nonfilers with a qualifying child born before 2021, but it’s not for use by filers with a qualifying child born in 2021. Does the parent just wait until next year, when it’s time to file 2021 tax returns, and file for credit from the date of birth to Dec. 31, 2021?

Answer: The Internal Revenue Service says it will update its online tools so that children born this year can be eligible for advance Child Tax Credit payments, but it hasn’t said when that update will occur. Claiming the credit when you file your 2021 federal income tax return in 2022 also will be in an option. Here’s the IRS response to a similar question on its website:

“Your first advance Child Tax Credit payments will be based on the children you claimed for the Child Tax Credit on your 2020 tax return (or 2019 tax return, if your 2020 tax return has not been processed as of the payment determination date for any of your monthly advance Child Tax Credit payments).

“Later this year, the Child Tax Credit Update Portal (CTC UP) will be updated to allow you to inform us about the qualifying children you will claim on your 2021 tax return so that we can adjust your estimated 2021 Child Tax Credit — and therefore adjust the amount of your monthly advance Child Tax Credit payments.

“If you do not receive advance Child Tax Credit payments for a qualifying child you will claim in 2021, you may claim the full amount of your allowable Child Tax Credit for that child when you file your 2021 tax return.”

Q: My family did receive the direct deposit for the Child Tax Credit advance payments, which is great, but I am wondering whether that will affect our eligibility for SNAP.

A: No, according to the IRS. “Advance Child Tax Credit payments cannot be counted as income when determining if you or anyone else is eligible for benefits or assistance, or how much you or anyone else can receive, under any federal program or under any state or local program financed in whole or in part with federal funds. These programs also cannot count advance Child Tax Credit payments as a resource for purposes of determining eligibility for at least 12 months after you receive it,” it says on its website.

SNAP, formerly known as food stamps, stands for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.

Q: Is it even safe to travel right now if you’re not vaccinated?

A: The CDC doesn’t recommend it. It urges people to delay travel until they are fully vaccinated.

If unvaccinated people must travel, they should take multiple steps to lower their risks and the risks they pose to others, including pre- and post-travel testing, and self-quarantining for seven days after the trip, even if they test negative, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, commonly known as the CDC.



Auwe to the individual driving a white sedan in the Marukai parking lot at 3 p.m. June 26. She pulled out of a parking space as I was walking to my car, pushing a shopping cart. She couldn’t wait until I got to the far (side) of the lot before blasting her horn for me to move out of the way. I hope that if her mother or other elderly relative was crossing the parking lot that drivers would be more patient than she was that day! I hope she sets a better example of being a good citizen with a better attitude for her children and grandchildren. Thankfully, I don’t have a heart problem, as she scared the living daylights out of me. Please learn to drive with aloha! — A senior citizen


Mahalo to the very kind lady who surprised us July 9 at the Enchanted Lake Safeway. She paid for an item that the clerk handed to us. We were not in line because we were waiting as the clerk called the Kailua Safeway about availability of the product. We’re very grateful for her thoughtful gesture and hope good things happen to her in the near future. Mahalo to the Safeway employees for their help, too. — Senior shopper

Write to Kokua Line at Honolulu Star-Advertiser, 7 Waterfront Plaza, Suite 210, 500 Ala Moana Blvd., Honolulu 96813; call 529-4773; fax 529-4750; or email

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