Record Number of California Workers Have Claimed Their Earned Income Tax Credit
A record number of hard working individuals and families -- over 1.2 million -- have already claimed their earned CA Earned Income Tax Credit (CalEITC), an effective anti-poverty program in the state with the highest poverty rate in the nation. These numbers have tripled from last year and are expected to continue to rise given the credit can be claimed after tax day through the end of the year.
“Record numbers of Californians are benefitting from the Earned Income Tax Credit thanks to the outreach efforts of government agencies and advocates like CalEITC4Me,” said Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon (D-Lakewood). “That means more money in the pockets of working families and more money going into local stores and businesses.
CalEITC4Me, the statewide outreach and education campaign has worked to expand the cash back credit so that additional families including self-employed workers are newly eligible this year. Those outreach efforts are proving successful: According to data released by the Franchise Tax Board, 1,262,358 million Californians have already claimed their earnings, surpassing the total number of claims in 2017 of 317,794 individuals. That 297% increase means that over $285 million has already been put back into the pockets of working families and individuals. Enrollment skyrocketed in many areas of the state, such as in Los Angeles County, which saw an increase of 459% over last year to nearly 400,000 people.
“The numbers are fantastic. I’m glad to see CalEITC helping so many more families,” said Assemblyman Phil Ting (D-San Francisco), Chair of the Assembly Budget Committee who spearheaded the effort last year to expand the program. “This modest boost in income can be life-changing for workers living in poverty.”
Even though Tax Day is behind us, our mission to end poverty and make work pay better is just beginning. Most don’t realize that hard-working Californians can claim the CalEITC they’ve earned at anytime throughout the year,” said Joe Sanberg, Founder of CalEITC4Me.org.
CalEITC4Me has enrolled hundreds of thousands of hard-working individuals through its statewide ‘surround-sound’ outreach campaign. The campaign entails an innovative texting program that has already reached over 1 million this year free tax prep resources and events, digital and print materials in Vietnamese, Mandarin, Spanish and English, a digital calculator to determine eligibility, as well as effective coordination with many partners. Since 2016, CalEITC4Me has helped over a million families claim over $2 billion in state and Federal EITC.