New website helps Massachusetts residents access more federal funding
The Shah Family Foundation, in partnership with Children’s HealthWatch, Greater Boston Legal Services, Massachusetts Association for Community Action, and the Massachusetts Law Reform Institute, today launched a new centralized website called FindYourFunds.org to help Massachusetts residents access available federal funding. There are a number of new and expanded federal programs designed to provide direct cash payments to Americans, including the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), Child Tax Credit (CTC), and Economic Impact Payments (also known as stimulus checks). FindYourFunds.org is a simple, one-stop-shop with information on who is eligible for these programs and how to apply, as well as links to free resources that provide guidance and application assistance.
The FindYourFunds community partners will be joined on Thursday, June 10 at 12pm by Senator Ed Markey for a free webinar on how to help community members get the most out of the tax benefits available. Registration is now open here.
“More than one million children in Massachusetts can benefit from the American Rescue Plan’s expansion of the Child Tax Credit,” said Senator Ed Markey. “This is an historic investment in the children of our country and will take monumental steps to cut childhood poverty in half in the United States. We must now ensure that parents across the Commonwealth are able to access and secure these lifesaving cash benefits. The launch of FindYourFunds.org is a critical tool to guarantee parents get the benefits they are entitled to during these challenging times.”
Any eligible Massachusetts resident who has already filed their 2020 taxes will automatically receive these payments without any further action necessary. Residents who did not file taxes but may be eligible for any or all of these programs still have an opportunity to file. In recent years, as many as 21 percent of workers in Massachusetts eligible for the Earned Income Tax Credit did not file taxes and therefore did not receive the payment. Similarly, about 220,000 Massachusetts residents were not automatically issued stimulus payments in 2020, despite many being eligible.
“Thousands of families across Massachusetts are eligible for significant cash assistance from the federal government, but unfortunately a good amount of that money is being left on the table,” said Jill Shah, President of the Shah Family Foundation. “Whether it’s because they don’t know about these programs, don’t know how to apply, or simply don’t know where to go for trustworthy information, FindYourFunds.org addresses these common barriers and helps ensure every Massachusetts resident gets the money available to them.”
“The pandemic caused an economic crisis that has laid bare the stark, systemic inequities and challenges facing low-income families across the Commonwealth, especially Black and Latinx communities,” said Georgia Katsoulomitis of the MLRI “Our lowest income households are the most likely to be left out of this critical federal relief. FindYourFunds.org connects families to the multilingual information they need, and is a resource state agencies can share broadly with families across the Commonwealth. FindYourFunds.org will increase access and decrease barriers.”
“The American Rescue Plan made historic expansions in the Child Tax Credit and Earned Income Tax Credit and provided another round of Economic Impact Payments – all of which support the health and well-being of families. We know that putting money back in the pockets of families, particularly those with low incomes, is a critical investment in our country’s children,” said Stephanie Ettinger de Cuba, Executive Director of Children’s HealthWatch headquartered at Boston Medical Center. “We are honored to partner with the Shah Family Foundation on FindYourFunds.org to ensure that all families can afford their basic needs. Together we call upon our nation’s leaders to make these evidence-based policy improvements permanent.”