California Earned Income Tax Credit

​​

​Put money back in your pocket.​

​You may qualify for cash-back tax credits and a bigger refund when you file your taxes. File early to put money in your pocket sooner!​

The California Earned Income Tax Credit (CalEITC) is a refundable cash back tax credit for qualified low-to-moderate income Californians.

Many hard-working​ individuals and families are eligible, including Californians that file their taxes with an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN). When combined with the federal EITC and the Young Child Tax Credit, CalEITC can put hundreds or even thousands of extra dollars in your pocket just by filing your taxes.

EITC is widely recognized as one of the nation's most powerful resources for lifting low-income people out of poverty. In 2015, California established the first-ever CalEITC to extend a supplemental cash-back credit to the poorest working families in the state. In 2020, Governor Gavin Newsom expanded CalEITC to further assist families facing poverty by raising the investment to more than $1 billion in refunds, and by introducing the Young Child Tax Credit (YCTC) to provide qualifying families with children under the age of six​ an additional $1,000. 

More information about CalEITC and how to claim this cash-back tax credit can be found through the Franchise Tax Board. ​

​Check if you qualify for CalEITC​​

You may qualify for CalEITC if:
  • ​You’re at least 18 years old or have a qualifying child
  • You have earned income within certain limits

The amount of CalEITC you may get depends on your income and family size

You must:
  • Have taxable earned income
  • Have a valid social security number or individual taxpayer identification number (ITIN) for you, your spouse, and any qualifying children
  • Not use “married/RDP filing separate” if married
  • Live in California for more than half the year
Earned income can be from:
  • W-2 wages
  • Self-employment
  • Salaries, tips
  • Other employee wages subject to California withholding​

If you qualify for CalEITC and have a child under the age of six as of the end of the tax year you might qualify for up to $1,000 through the Young Child Tax Credit.

You may go back up to four years to claim CalEITC by filing or amending a state income tax return. 

E​​​ITC Calculator​

Find out how much you could get back by using the Franchise Tax Board's EITC calculator, available in 6 languages.

​Free Tax Preparation Services​

Whether required to file taxes or not, Californians must file their state ​tax returns to qualify for CalEITC. To help you keep every cent of your cash back CalEITC, local community-based organizations are here to help with no-cost IRS certified tax preparation services. Search for the no-cost tax preparation site near you by visiting the​ Franchise Tax Board's Free Tax Help ​We​bpa​ge​.​​

Federal  Information

In addition to CalEITC, you may qualify for the federal EITC. Visit IRS Earned Income Tax Credit for more information.

For information on obtaining an ITIN and more, visit IRS ITIN.​

Cal​EITC Report

The Costs of Unclaimed Earned Income Tax Credits to Calif​ornia’s Economy: Update and Expansion of the “Left on the Table” Report (January 2018)

CalEITC+ Education & Outreach Grant Program

​CSD currently administers a grant program in partnership with the California Franchise Tax Board that is designed to increase the number of Californians that claim CalEITC by funding education and outreach efforts throughout the state​.  ​For more information about the CalEITC+​ Education and Outreach Grant, visit CSD Contracting Opportunities​​.​

For more information about CalEITC+ Education and Outreach Grant activities ​throughout California please visit our statewide grantees:

Golden State Stimulus​​​

For more information about the 2021 Golden State Stimulus I and II, please visit the Franchise Tax Board's Golden State Stimulus Webpage.

 

 

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