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As CT child tax rebate deadline nears, state increases outreach

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CTMIRROR.ORG
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Gov. Ned Lamont held a press conference in Waterbury publicizing the deadline.

With five days to apply, about 57% of taxpayers eligible for a child tax rebate have completed the on-line form that can return $250 for every child, up to $750 for most families, Gov. Ned Lamont said Tuesday.

“We’re making good progress,” Lamont said at a press conference in Waterbury.

The completion rate is nearly 70% in cities like Waterbury, Bridgeport, New Haven and Hartford, he said. Eligibility is limited by annual income: up to $200,000 for couples and $100,000 for single parents.

Starting last Friday, the state Department of Revenue Services began sending postcard reminders to households with children.

Commissioner Mark Boughton of the Department of Revenue Services said the state does not have the up-to-date data that could allow it to simply mail rebate checks to eligible households.

The DRS used 2020 data to mail out the postcards, but it could not be used to cut checks because the state cannot tell from those returns which children have reached age 19 or which taxpayers have left Connecticut, Boughton said.

About 250,000 children live in the households that already have applied, he said. Based on how taxpayers respond to other filing deadlines, Boughton said he is expecting a crush of filings by the deadline Sunday.

The state eventually gets 2021 data on dependents from the IRS, potentially allowing the state to pay rebates next year to qualified parents who did not apply by the July 31 deadline.

“That’ll be up to the legislature during the next session,” Boughton said.

Rep. Sean Scanlon, D-Guilford, an architect of the rebate program as co-chair of the Finance, Revenue and Bonding Committee, said the legislature will see how much of the $300 million budgeted for rebates went unclaimed.

“Listen, we’re here with a very simple message to the people of Connecticut and Waterbury,” Scanlon said. “You have five days left to make this application, and it takes about two minutes to do it.”

To qualify:

  • You must be a resident of Connecticut.
  • You must have claimed at least one child as a dependent on your 2021 federal income tax return who was 18 or younger.
  • You must meet the income thresholds.

To apply for the rebate on line, go to https://egov.ct.gov/drschildrebateform/