Earned Income Tax Credit

General Information on the Federal EITC Credit  
The Earned Income Tax Credit or the EITC is a refundable federal income tax credit for low to moderate income working individuals and families. Congress originally approved the tax credit legislation in 1975 in part to offset the burden of social security taxes and to provide an incentive to work. When the EITC exceeds the amount of taxes owed, it results in a tax refund to those who claim and qualify for the credit.

To qualify, taxpayers must meet certain requirements and file a federal  (IRS-NOT State of Arkansas) tax return, even if they did not earn enough money to be obligated to file a tax return.

The EITC has no effect on certain welfare benefits. In most cases, EITC payments will not be used to determine eligibility for Medicaid, Supplemental Security Income (SSI), food stamps, low-income housing or most Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) payments.

Usually if you qualify for the EITC credit, you qualify for free tax preparation.  Please see our list of online tax preparation sites to see if you can get this service done for free.

How do I know if I qualify this year?  
The IRS has a web site where you answer questions to see if you qualify for the credit. This site is available in both English and Spanish. at the IRS website.

How much refund/credit could I receive?  
Both the IRS and Intuit have free on-line assistants/calculators that can figure the amount of credit you will receive if you qualify. If you want to do a quick calculation to see how much credit you will receive, click either of the following links:

The EITC is a federal credit taken on your IRS tax form.  The State of Arkansas Tax Department does not answer questions concerning eligibility.  If you have questions or concerns about this credit, please contact the IRS.