February 7, 2023 — Letter

NCLC writes to express our continued concern about the Treasury Department’s practice of using the Treasury Offset Program (TOP) to reduce or eliminate payments made through refundable Child Tax Credits (CTC) and Earned Income Tax Credits (EITC) when paid as part of a federal tax refund. These tax credits are intended to support families and low-income workers, lifting millions of children out of poverty. However, due to Treasury’s practice of offsetting tax refunds to collect government debt, millions of low-income families—particularly those of color—are at risk of not receiving these critical lifelines.

NCLC has previously highlighted this problem in the context of the
collection of student loan debt and this letter briefly highlights some of the implications of CTC and EITC offsets for justice-involved individuals and their families and related equity concerns.