National Survey: Families Faced Financial Strain When Expanded CTC Expired
By Ashley Burnside, Bruce Fuller, Elaine Maag, Kathryn Menefee, Brayan Rosa-Rodríguez & Qifan Zhang
This report presents findings from a survey of families with children conducted in July 2022 on the impacts of the CTC in the United States and Puerto Rico. Most eligible families with children had received advanced monthly payments of the CTC from July to December 2021. The payments amounted to half of their credit, the remainder becoming available once the household filed a tax return in early 2022. The expanded CTC—in addition to being delivered monthly—also had a higher value in 2021, ranging up to $3,600 for the youngest children. The credit was also fully refundable, meaning that families with very low incomes received the maximum credit.
Not surprisingly, once the monthly payments ended, as our findings detail, families had a harder time affording essentials like bills and food, facing more financial stress, and reporting higher levels of food hardship—all of which can be harmful to children. The positive benefits reported by families during the distribution of the monthly payments had reversed.