COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Did you see any extra money in your bank account today?

Advanced payments of the expanded Child Tax Credit begin today for millions of Americans, as part of the $1.9 trillion dollar American Rescue Plan Act signed into law in March.

“Starting on July 15, and then continuing every month, roughly on the 15th, through the end of the year, through December,” said Erik Ricci with Jackson Hewitt.

Ricci said the money is available to single parents making less than $75,000, and married parents earning less than $150,000, and will be split between this year and next — half this year in monthly payments, and half next year in one lump sum, after you file your taxes.

Which means, according to Ricci, next year’s refund is going to be different.

“If you have three kids and you used to get $6,000 in Child Tax Credit, all at once with your earned income tax credit and your withholding, now, you’re getting that sent to you over the next five months,” said Ricci. “Your refund’s going to be smaller, and people need to be prepared for that.”

As for the amount, the law increases the credit to $3,600 for every child five years of age and under, and $3,000 for every child from 6 to 17 years old. And the person who claimed the child as a dependent on his or her tax return this year, is the one who gets the cash.

“Grandma, grandpa, brother, sister, a family relative, whoever — claimed those children on their tax return, they will be receiving the payments.”

Just make sure you filed your taxes with the most up-to-date information, so the agency knows how and where to send the money, which you’ll receive in the same way you received your tax refund — either direct deposit or a check.

“If you filed this year, and all your information is correct as it was several months ago when you filed, you have no issues, it should be as smooth as can be,” said Ricci.

If you want to opt out of the monthly payments, in order to receive it all in one lump sum next year, you must unenroll using the online portal ( three days before the first Thursday of the next month.
For example, if you want to unenroll for the August payment, you must do so by August 2.

Follow this link for a table, provided by the IRS, showing the un-enrollment deadlines.

Remember, if you do not receive your payments, or have questions about the advanced payments, you Better Call 4.