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A valid SSN or ITIN must be obtained by the extended filing deadline in order to receive certain credits on the 2020 return. For most calendar year taxpayers, the extended filing deadline for the 2020 return is October 15, 2021; however, there may be an exception if you are living out of the country. See IRS Publication 54 Tax Guide for U.S. Citizens and Resident Aliens Abroad for more information.

Due to these requirements, returns completed using the TaxAct program (when the return is completed after the extended filing deadline), will generate a Yellow Alert warning of the requirement which will give you the ability to confirm that the SSN/ITIN was obtained by the extended filing deadline of the return.

To make or modify entries (i.e. if you indicated that you did not have a valid SSN or ITIN by the due date, but you actually did have one or if you need to indicate that you did not have a valid SSN or ITIN):

  1. From within your TaxAct return (Online or Desktop), click Federal. On smaller devices, click in the upper left-hand corner, then click Federal.
  2. Click Miscellaneous Topics in the Federal Quick Q&A Topics menu to expand, click No SSN by Due Date to expand, then click No SSN for taxpayer or spouse or No SSN for dependent(s).
  3. Continue with the interview process to enter all of the appropriate information.
  4. On the screen titled SSN (or ITIN) Requirement, check (or clear) Check here if you did not have an SSN (or ITIN) by the due date of your return (including extensions), then click Continue.

Note. For the dependent section, you would first need to click Edit on the dependent you need to access to see this check box.

Additional Information

Per IRS Instructions for Form 1040 and 1040-SR, on page 43:

Social security number (SSN). For the EIC, a valid SSN is a number issued by the Social Security Administration unless “Not Valid for Employment” is printed on the social security card and the number was issued solely to allow the recipient of the SSN to apply for or receive a federally funded benefit. However, if “Valid for Work Only With DHS Authorization” is printed on your social security card, your SSN is valid for EIC purposes only as long as the DHS authorization is still valid.

To find out how to get an SSN, see Social Security Number (SSN) near the beginning of these instructions. If you won't have an SSN by the date your return is due, see What if You Can't File on Time?

If you didn't have an SSN issued on or before the due date of your 2020 return (including extensions), you can't claim the EIC on your original or an amended 2020 return. Also, if a child didn't have an SSN issued on or before the due date of your return (including extensions), you can't count that child as a qualifying child in figuring the EIC on your original or an amended 2020 return.

Additional Child Tax Credit

Per IRS Schedule 8812 Instructions Additional Child Tax Credit:

Taxpayer Identification Number Requirements

Each qualifying child must have the required social security number (SSN). If you have a qualifying child who does not have the required SSN, you cannot use the child to claim the ACTC on either your original or an amended 2020 return. The required SSN is one that is valid for employment and is issued before the due date of your 2020 return (including extensions).

You must have a taxpayer identification number by the due date of your return. If you, or your spouse if filing jointly, do not have an SSN or IRS individual taxpayer identification number (ITIN) issued on or before the due date of your 2020 return (including extensions), you cannot claim the ACTC on either your original or an amended 2020 return.

If you apply for an ITIN on or before the due date of your 2020 return (including extensions) and the IRS issues you an ITIN as a result of the application, the IRS will consider your ITIN as issued on or before the due date of your return.

American Opportunity Credit

Per IRS Form 8863 Instructions Education Credits (American Opportunity and Lifetime Learning Credits), on page 1:

Taxpayer identification number (TIN) needed by due date of return. If you haven’t been issued a TIN by the due date of your 2020 return (including extensions), you can’t claim the American opportunity credit on either your original or an amended 2020 return. Also, the American opportunity credit isn’t allowed on either your original or an amended 2020 return for a student who hasn’t been issued a TIN by the due date of your 2020 return (including extensions).

Note that any link in the information above is updated each year automatically and will take you to the most recent version of the document at the time it is accessed.


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