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Here's What to Do if You Missed the Deadline to Claim Your Child Tax Credit or Stimulus Money

Just because you forgot to claim your child tax credit money or third stimulus check before the Nov. 17 deadline doesn't mean you'll never see that cash.

$100 bills lying on a laptop keyboard
It's not too late to get your stimulus money. 
James Martin/CNET

Nov. 17 was the final day to claim any missing stimulus or child tax credit money that you haven't received through the IRS Free File form. But don't worry: That money isn't lost forever. You can still claim any money owed to you when you file your taxes in 2023. 

Roughly 9 million people who didn't receive their payments never filed a tax return this year, either because they're not required to file or because they needed more time. However, the IRS used tax returns to determine eligibility for both of these payments. 

Keep reading to find out what you can do to receive any stimulus payments or child tax credit money owed to you. For more, see if your state is mailing out stimulus checks this month.

When was the deadline for claiming stimulus or child tax credit money?

The deadline to claim missing stimulus or child tax credit money was Nov. 17, for those using the IRS Free File tool. The Free File tool is for those who are not typically required to file taxes due to lower income. 

If you filed a tax extension earlier this year or haven't filed yet, your deadline to submit your tax return if you're required to file was Oct. 17. That was also the last day to file Form 1040 to avoid a late-filing penalty.

If you were affected by one of the recent natural disasters, such as Hurricane Ian, you have until Feb. 15, 2023, to file. But if you live in an area covered by Federal Emergency Management Agency disaster declarations, like Kentucky or Missouri, Tuesday, Nov. 15 was the last day to file.

Child Tax Credit Calculations

You can still get your stimulus and child tax credit money -- just not this year.

Sarah Tew/CNET

What to do if you missed the deadline to claim your money

If you missed any of the deadlines above to claim your missing child tax credit payments or stimulus money, don't worry. You can still claim that money when you file your taxes in 2023 -- you just won't receive it this year. 

The final cutoff day for claiming the money will be on Tax Day in 2025, but we recommend filing as soon as possible.

Filed a tax return but still didn't receive your money? Here's what the issue could be

If you filed your taxes this year but still haven't received your stimulus check or child tax credit money that you're eligible for, there are some other things that could be holding it up.

  • You don't have a bank account set up.
  • It was your first time filing.
  • You have a mixed-status household.
  • You haven't updated your address with the IRS or USPS.
  • You're experiencing homelessness.
  • You have limited or no internet access.

If none of these reasons apply to you, it may be time to file a payment trace with the IRS either by calling 800-919-9835 or mailing in Form 3911.

How much money you could be getting from child tax credit and stimulus payments

Enhanced child tax credit: Up to $3,600 per child, or up to $1,800 per child if you received monthly payments in 2021.

First stimulus check: $1,200, sent in April 2020 

Second stimulus check: $600, sent in December 2020

Third stimulus check: $1,400, sent in March 2021

Note that if you filed your taxes in 2021, you should've already received your money from the first two stimulus checks.

For more, find out if your state is sending additional child tax credit payments.