Analysis by Ashley Nunes
With the midterm elections coming, Democrats are trying to push through key legislative priorities — including
renewing the child tax credit (CTC), which gives working parents a credit for each child and will expire in December
2025. No one doubts that it will be renewed; the credit has broad bipartisan public support.
Our study shows that over 1.5 million parents — 80 percent of whom are women — may be excluded from the full
child tax credit despite working. At the current federal minimum wage, we estimate that a single parent would have
to work over 63 hours a week, 52 weeks a year, to claim the full benefit. What’s more, we find that the income
required to claim the full benefit — $24,000 — far exceeds the poverty threshold ($18,677 for a single-parent family
in 2021), set by the Census Bureau.
Put another way, poor parents must earn more than poverty threshold to claim a benefit aimed at lifting them out of