Types of Health Insurance Denials

Types of Health Insurance Denials

Types of Health Insurance Denials

Patients need to know that there is a difference between the denial of a health insurance claim and the rejection of a claim.

Health Insurance Denials


Claim rejections occur when a claim is not even processed by the health insurance company. Rejections are “kicked out” immediately after they are electronically uploaded and before any type of coverage, a determination is made. The electronic submission systems have “claim edits” that catch bad data based on demographics, age, gender, and basic insurance information. Rejections are caused by things like submitting incorrect policy numbers, enrollee numbers, patient birth dates, or sending the claim to the wrong insurance company. Rejections require that the patient and the provider re-verify all of the information that is submitted to the insurance company and then re-submit the claim.

Denials, on the other hand, occur when the health insurance company receives and processes a claim, but determines that the treatment in question is not a covered benefit in the benefit plan. Denial codes on the insurance notices that come back will include a message like “service not a benefit in enrollee’s plan”, “denied for lack of medical necessity” , or “denied coverage of experimental treatment”. Denials can be appealed if a mistake has been made and a decent portion of denials are overturned.

There are six major types of rejections and denials:

Incorrect policy number, enrollee number, or patient birth date

If you receive a notice from your health insurance company indicating that there was an incorrect policy number, enrollee number, patient birth date, or “no record of coverage” then the claim that your physician or healthcare provider sent to the insurance company did not accurately identify who you are. This is the number one reason for rejected or denied claims and it is very common.

Check and double-check to make sure the healthcare provider knows the name, policy number, enrollee number, and birth date of the policyholder and the patient if they are not the same person.

Service not provided during the enrollment period

Your employer buys health insurance every one to two years. Services that overlap these renewal periods are prone to errors. If your employer changes insurance companies, you have to be well aware of the effective dates and make sure your providers are well aware of the changes. Also, take note of the length of time before your health insurance becomes effective when starting a new job.

Service not a benefit in the enrollee’s benefit plan

Your employer looks at many health plans and weighs the cost of the plan against the benefits and services included. Unfortunately, employers sometimes have to make tough decisions and cut certain benefits for the sake of others. What is even more unfortunate is that most employees, including me, never take the time to see what is included in their benefit plan until it is too late.

The benefit plan is the document issued by your insurance company that describes what services and covered and the corresponding coverage level. You could think of the benefit plan as the contract between you and the insurance company. You pay the premiums and they provide health insurance benefits that are clearly spelled out in the benefit plan. If you get a notice from a healthcare provider or an EOB from your insurance company that states “service not a benefit in the enrollee’s plan” the first thing to do is check the benefit plan to make sure.

Pre-existing medical conditions

Pre-existing medical conditions weres a hot topic in the healthcare reform efforts of 2010 and will be abolished by the Affordable Care Act in 2014. If you cannot get health insurance because of a pre-existing medical condition,  Newstead recommends that you contact the newly established federal program that has been put in place until the laws change in 2014. The new federal program is called the Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan (PCIP) and you can contact them online at

Not medically necessary

This type of denial places follow-up squarely on your provider, but pro-active patients can get involved. Insurance companies are essentially businesspeople who follow general medical guidelines to manage the benefits process. The medical director of the insurance company is the only person who really makes medical judgments and he or she only reviews several dozen appeals each day.

The fact that you received this type of notice means that something about your treatment did not fit into the general policies programmed into the insurance company’s claims system and the medical director has probably not seen it. These general policies are actually standardized across all insurance companies. They are called the Milliman’s Medical Underwriting Guidelines and they are probably available on your insurance company’s website. If they know what they're doing, your provider will find out which guideline is causing a problem and then issue an appeal that addresses the guideline as it relates to the uniqueness of your treatment.

Experimental treatment 

If a treatment or device is approved by the Food & Drug Administration (FDA), generally the insurance companies will cover it as well. The insurance companies do not test the effectiveness of devices or treatments. They wait until there is sufficient research from medical colleges and universities and the FDA to make their coverage policy. After that point, it is up to your employer to decide whether it is to be included in your benefits plan. New, “cutting-edge” treatments and drugs are not always as effective for the patient as the traditional treatments.

There are definitely legitimate advances, but those advances represent a minority, not the majority of experimental treatments. Marcia Angell, MD, a former editor of The New England Journal of Medicine wrote a book about this phenomenon in 2004 called The Truth About Drug Companies.

Read This : What is an Annual Premium for Health Insurance?

Why Medical Malpractice Insurance Is More Important Than Ever

Why Medical Malpractice Insurance Is More Important Than Ever

Why Medical Malpractice Insurance Is More Important Than Ever

Medical Malpractice Insurance


Even with the rising costs of medical malpractice insurance, it is more important than ever to be protected by malpractice coverage. Health care professionals have worked diligently to get to their level of expertise and one lawsuit could devastate a career. Medical professional liability insurance covers most, if not all, of the legal fees and awards associated with lawsuits so that you can move forward with your life and career.

The Increasing Size Of These Awards


Over the past 20 years, the average award in a lawsuit has doubled. Within this time span, individual awards ranged from approximately $328,000 on the low end with some award amounts coming in between $1 million and $3.5 million per case. In a recent Boston lawsuit, the jury awarded the parents of a deceased three years old $15 million in damages.

The Popularity Of Medical Malpractice Insurance Law Suits

Malpractice lawsuits have become a popular commodity in modern society and have doubled in size every decade since the early 1990s. Data obtained from the National Practitioner Data Bank, maintained by the federal Department of Health and Human Services, indicates that between 1991 and 2003, these claims have more than doubled over a 12-year span of time from $2.12 billion in 1991 to $4.45 billion in 2003. More recent data indicates that this trend has continued through the last portion of this decade as well.

 Recent Changes In The Law

Many states have begun instituting medical professional liability insurance laws that are subject to statutes of limitations in an effort to maintain affordable coverage. This will ensure that relevant facts and potential witnesses are available should a suit go to court while also providing potential defendants and their carriers with some certainty that they will not be held responsible for actions that happened long ago. Nebraska currently requires that a plaintiff bring an action within two years of the act giving rise to the injury and New Jersey is working on legislation that will narrow the window for filing a lawsuit to not more than four years after the alleged incident.

The Impact Of A Lawsuit On You And Your Family

These cases can be a financial drain upon a physician, as well as their family. If you are not covered under a comprehensive medical malpractice insurance plan when you are sued, not only will it be difficult to keep your practice open because you won't have the funds to pay office rent or operational costs, it will be almost impossible for you to keep the home you and your family live in or pay for your family’s most basic needs without the income from your practice. Medical malpractice insurance can protect your business and personal assets from the devastation of a lawsuit and keep your career on track. 


Why are Insurance Premiums Audited

Why are Insurance Premiums Audited

Why are Insurance Premiums Audited

Insurance Premiums Audited


Insurance policy audits are conducted yearly for all businesses.


Preparing for the audit can make the difference between a 'bad audit' experience or a good one. Avoid the potential stress, lost productivity, increased premiums, or possible policy cancellations by preparing for your audit.


What is an insurance audit?


Policies are audited to ensure that the premium charged by the insurance company reflects their actual exposure, which was estimated at policy inception.Insurance audits are performed by employees of the insurance company or independent auditors hired by the insurance company; in some cases, forms will be sent to the business for a 'self-audit process. In all cases, the business must prepare information and utilize the time of its employees to respond to the audit. The level of personnel required varies based on the company's size. Personnel required might include the Office Manager, Accounting Manager, Controller, or external CPAs. Data is collected and provided to the insurance auditor by the company personnel.


What is the auditor looking for?


Insurance companies audit certain Liability policies and ALL Workers' Compensation policies. The audits collect exposure information estimated when the policy was written and compares it to the actuals. This data is then used for determining and adjusting premium amounts. Information typically (though not exclusively) required includes the following:


  • Liability Policies
  • Gross company sales 
  • Independent contractor costs (insured and uninsured)
  • Payroll for certain types of exposures
  • Workers' Compensation Policies
  • Actual employee payroll


Cost of independent contractors if no certificate or proof of other coverage is provided This information may be in the form of payroll records, Federal Form 941, Financial Statements, Check Registers, and Certificates of Insurance from contractors/vendors. A company's use of contractors can be determined by the information disclosed in the financials or check register. Contractors/Vendors that do not have valid insurance certificates proving independent coverage will be added to the company's exposure totals. Not only do they possibly uninsured contractors/vendors increase a company's exposure to loss, but they can also cause significant increases in their premiums.


What makes for a 'good audit' experience?


The main requirement for a 'good audit' experience is having all the information requested readily available for the auditor when they arrive on the premises. This includes easy access to contractor certificates of insurance demonstrating that the coverage is current and meets required limit levels. The upfront preparation and organization by the company can prevent ongoing audit responses and adjustments later on. Another 'good audit' experience is no surprises such as large premium adjustments, amounts due, or returns after the audit is complete.


What makes for a 'bad audit' experience?


If the company cannot readily access the requested data, a variety of unwanted events can occur including:

Excessive waste of time for the auditor and company personnel

Company (Policy holder) gets a bill for a large additional premium for the audit period and next period

Company must immediately contact contractors requesting certificates and forward to the auditor for premium adjustments, requiring significant time for both parties.

What are the potential consequences of a bad audit?

The results of a bad audit can be severe, especially if the audit resulted in additional premiums. Policies may be canceled due to non-payment of the additional premium or for non-cooperation in the audit process. The company could have their credit affected. Staff will need to dedicate additional time to correct or adjust audit discrepancies, resulting in lost productivity and a disruption of the work routine. An insurance company could cancel the easy 'self-audit process and insist on 'in person' audits.


How do you avoid a 'bad audit' experience?


Two words - be prepared. Understand what is auditable and what the audits are based on. Have the requested financial information available for the auditor. Present up-to-date insurance certificates for all vendors and contractors indicating limits meet requirements and coverage dates are current. Be sure the certificates are tracked and kept up to date. The best way to manage contractor certificates is by maintaining an automated certificate tracking system that provides policy expiration notices and allows you to attach images of the certificate for quick access during the audit, helping to avoid unnecessary adjustments to the premium. Automated systems - notably insurance and vendor tracking software - are available on the market to help in this process.

To survive your insurance audit, make sure you know what the auditor wants in advance, collect and organize the information and be ready to find additional data quickly. Avoid the pitfalls and surprises of the 'bad audit' experience!


What is the purpose of an insurance audit?


To determine the worthiness of an insurance policy. he audit processes started around 20 years ago, and the premise for the audits were a health insurance policy would provide a financial security to the policyholder in the event that the insured got ill. The audit process essentially shows that a policyholder has a more permanent position in the insurance industry and provides more benefits than the actual premiums of the policy.

T

How much is the insurance audit?


typical audit entails following a typical process, which includes assessing the reasonableness of the premium, the health insurance policies the policyholder has obtained for the last 2, 3, or even 4 years.


How much does an insurance audit cost?


It is worth noting that the cost of the insurance audit depends on how long the audit has taken, the insurance policies the policyholder has obtained over a certain period of time and even the type of insurance policy the policyholder obtained.

ecause of the lengthy process of an insurance audit, insurance audit is seldom conducted for individual insurers as most of the policyholders get similar results within a few minutes. Many insurance companies already have their audits going on.


Is insurance audit required for a particular insurance policy?

No, insurance audits are not required for individual insurance policies. The insurance audit has been mandated by law in some countries. Some of the countries where insurance audit is mandatory include the Netherlands, Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong, New Zealand, Canada and the United States.


However, for a comprehensive insurance audit to be done, it is worth noting that all insurance companies, as well as insurance agents and intermediaries that sell policies, need to be involved in the audit process.


Insurance Audits are Needed to Handle Different Types of Insurance


One thing to note is that insurance audits involve different types of insurance policies, in which the audit process may be of different lengths. This makes insurance audits 

different from each other.


The types of insurance insurance audits are also split into three categories, which are either similar to each other or of different lengths and type. However, the types do not 

necessarily matter as long as the audit is conducted and the audit results are presented to the insurance policyholder, according to the insurance company.


Covered Insurance Audit: Similar, Lengthy, Quick


A covered insurance audit basically involves getting an overview of the policyholder's coverage under the insurance policy. It is similar to an insurance policy audit, but

takes longer than the other two categories.


Covered insurance audits essentially involve completing a health insurance policy audit that is done through a health insurance broker or insurance agent. Usually, insurance agents or brokers will get different insurance policies for the client from different insurance companies and they will get the audit reports to the client for feedback. The reason for getting the documentation from the broker or agent, rather than the 

insurer, is for the client to give a valid reason as to why the insurance company has

 not covered a claim.

The purpose of getting the auditor's reports is to understand why insurance companies have covered the claim. Based on the findings, the client needs to give an argument as to why he should not get a refund.


Who is an Insurance Agent How do I Become an Insurance Agent

Who is an Insurance Agent How do I Become an Insurance Agent

Who is an Insurance Agent How do I Become an Insurance Agent 

Insurance Agent


Insurance as we know is a security to protect us in a difficult or unforeseen situation. There are many types of insurance that one can avail,

• Life insurance
• Auto insurance
• Property insurance
• Travel insurance

There are many subtypes and a lot of companies offer customized products too.

Who is an Insurance agent?

An Insurance agent works or represents an insurance company and is a point of contact for individuals looking for insurance. They explain various types of insurance products and help the buyer pick the one that is best for them. They also do the documentation part and support as a POC for policyholders during the term of the policy.

What does an Insurance agent do?

• Helps people make informed decisions about insurance 
• Helps customers through the claim process
• Looks at customer’s current coverages
• Help customers review their policies 
• Explains each type of coverage in-depth and give examples of how it may help

India being a really competitive and price-sensitive market, some people would say that they want the cheapest insurance, and the agent will likely ask them, ‘’Think about what would happen if you had to make a claim? Would you want the policy with the best price or best benefits?” This usually tells them that the agent has their best interests in the heart because when the customer needs to make a claim, the agents can help begin that process.

The great thing about Insurance agents is having the opportunity to help someone who’s going through a tough time; to turn someone’s day around.

Difference between Agent and Broker?

The agent directly works on behalf of or represents an insurance company. The Broker works on behalf of or represents an insurance buyer (you)

There are 2 types of agents,

Captive Agent – These agents work on behalf or represent a single insurance company
Independent Agent – These agents work on behalf or represent multiple insurance companies

How to become an Insurance Agent?

Being an Insurance agent can be a really rewarding career choice. Once you have decided to become an insurance agent, you need to register with the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India or IRDAI. One needs to fill the required forms, upload, and pay. Post-registration, the exam date, and timing are conveyed to the applicant.

IRDAI even provides study materials to candidates in various languages to make it easier for them.

What are the benefits of becoming an insurance agent?

• Start Earning at the Age of 18
• Be Your Own Boss
• Creates a Stable Income and Control the Growth
• Flexible Work Timings
• Zero Investment Required

Being an insurance agent can be really productive and anyone can do it. Retired people to homemakers can have a great source of Incomes, besides the eligibility criteria is minimal (10th Pass) so what are you waiting for?  today!

Personal Accident Insurance Vs Life Insurance Comparison

Personal Accident Insurance Vs Life Insurance Comparison

Personal Accident Insurance Vs Life Insurance Comparison 

Accident Insurance Vs Life Insurance

Personal Accident Insurance Vs Life Insurance Comparison


Personal Accident Insurance (PAI) – Personal Accident Insurance covers the existing health and personal expenditure or expenses. If you are having regular accidents or accidents of some type or nature where you face a lot of pain and suffering then this insurance is the best choice for you. Insurance companies go as far as deducting some amount as it covers the costs incurred if the personal accident happens. But there is no insurance provided for planned accidents. Your personal accident insurance does not cover an accident that happens because of human mistake. You need life insurance to protect you from financial risks if you get seriously injured and require surgery. Life insurance companies also provide you with a ‘bonus’ amount. This bonus money is provided as a part of the money that you paid. This is termed as your entitlement money. This amount is used to take care of the debts that were taken on behalf of you and are paid back by the insurance company.


Life Insurance – Life Insurance covers a person for the financial risk of him or her. This insurance is more of a risk protection than a financial benefit. If you are a young person and fall in love and get married this insurance is required because this will reduce your burden and increase your financial security. Life insurance can also cover accidents, trauma, accidents that happen due to accidents or diseases like cancer. With this insurance you can even cover your debts if you have borrowed money. You can decide what insurance coverage you want. You can pay for insurance for just one year. This can even include you staying at your home for a period of a year if you are injured and need emergency treatment.


Apart from giving you some financial security, life insurance also protects your relationship. You can still have a good relationship even if you don’t have a life insurance policy or emergency fund. But if you have both a personal and life insurance policy then it will cover the financial burden. If you have both life insurance and personal accident insurance then both can be combined as your life insurance insurance policy will cover your personal accident risk.


Insurance Plans For Life Insurance


Personal Accident Insurance – Personal accident insurance has a set cover for multiple accidents or accidents that can lead to a major accident. Insurance companies also have different names for the plans that they provide. If you have life insurance then personal accident insurance covers just the injuries or illnesses that are caused due to accidents. If you have life insurance then personal accident insurance does not provide you any benefits. If you want the maximum benefits for the insurance policy, then choose life insurance insurance insurance.


Personal Accident Insurance – You can pay for a personal accident insurance through cash or through insurance cards. In this, you will pay for the premium in cash. There are many insurance companies who offer cashless policies. You can even pay for it online through the internet. But you need a life insurance policy to cover your expenses that are caused by an accident or serious illness. The premium for this can be increased after a particular amount if it is high.


Personal Accident Insurance – The personal accident insurance is available for you and your family. Insurance companies only provide personal accident insurance to you and the family. The policies also cover accidental death of your spouse and children. There is also an option to have a separate life insurance policy for yourself and your family. With life insurance policies, you can plan for emergencies and keep your financial situation stable.


Personal Accident Insurance – Personal accident insurance covers multiple accidents that can lead to accidents and accidents due to negligence. If you have accidents and accidents due to negligence then this insurance policy will cover the financial loss. Insurance companies have different names for the plans that they offer. You need a life insurance policy to cover the financial loss. This insurance will also cover your emergencies like a life threatening accident. But if you have a life insurance policy for the first time then you need to talk to an insurance broker to know what is the right insurance plan for you.


Personal Accident Insurance – For personal accident insurance there is an accident only policy, a personal accident accident plan or a personal accident insurance plan. But this coverage is limited only to you and the immediate family members. You have to pay a monthly fee for the insurance that will cover any accident or accident that happens. But you will not get any financial assistance from the insurance company.


Personal Accident Insurance – Some people do not like buying personal accident insurance as they feel that insurance companies are trying to make profits from it. However, this insurance is available even for those people who have a life insurance policy. The insurance companies will charge a higher premium for the insurance that is separate from a life insurance policy. The insurance companies also charge a premium for accidental death insurance. If you want to buy personal accident insurance for a person then this insurance will not cover death as a result of a fatal accident. You can get insurance for life or death. But the insurance companies charge a high premium for this policy.


Personal Accident Insurance Vs Life Insurance Comparison


On the one hand, it doesn't cost as much to carry personal accident insurance as it does a whole life insurance policy. In any way, it is also far more limiting in what it will actually cover. That's why it is important that you understand each and every word of a thinkable policy coverage before you accept it. But are there circumstances where a personal accident policy can be a good thing?
Of course, or no one would ever want to buy it!

One of the best things about the personal accident policy is that you do not have to be dead to benefit from it. While it is comforting to realize that your family will be taken care of in the event of your death, there is still nothing too joyous about paying out monthly premiums with the full knowledge that its wealth you personally will never see again. Personal accident insurance can be set up to pay a cash payment in the event that you are injured and disabled without work. This policy can be a great supplementation to your life insurance policy as it gives you and your family that little bit extra that you're probably going to need when times get tough.

In any way, it cannot be highlighted enough how important it is for you to fully check out the policy before you agree to it. If you don’t, you could just end up paying a premium on a policy that will never stand a chance of helping you out financially when you are injured and can't work. On the other hand, the life insurance policy - at least the whole life - may not pay you for injuries, but it does build cash value, which you, in turn, can treat as a savings account and make withdrawals from should you ever need a little extra money.

Life insurance will also not pull any restrictions with regard to fulfillment in the event of your death. You can go by using life knowing that your loved ones will get the full amount should something ever happen to you. Term life insurance, unlike whole life, expires after a time, but it is often possible to get a lot more coverage for a much smaller premium. In any way, this type of life insurance does not build cash value.

So once you realize all the facts about the insurance policies that you are considering, you are in the position to judge for yourself which of the two is better. It's not always the same answer, so keep that in mind.

You may get up to 50,000 back with one-time COVID credits and benefits in 2021

You may get up to 50,000 back with one-time COVID credits and benefits in 2021

You may get up to 50,000 back with one-time COVID credits and benefits in 2021

More than 100 million people are getting more money in tax credits, tax breaks, and expanded health benefits through pandemic-related benefits that Congress approved this spring in the $1.9 trillion stimulus bill and other one-time rule changes. This money and savings come on top of the third stimulus check for up to $1,400 per person and dependents the IRS continues to send out

Whether you qualify for these new benefits depends on different factors, such as your adjusted gross income, if you have children or if you have COBRA health insurance -- so not everyone will be able to claim every item listed here. But for many people, these changes could end up saving you hundreds or even thousands of dollars. 

Here are seven of the tax credits and health savings you can claim this year that could potentially bring your family a maximum of around $50,000, depending on your personal situation. 

Up to $20,576 per family: Free COBRA insurance premium coverage through September

COBRA insurance


Typically, if you lose your job, you can buy insurance coverage through your former employer under the government Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act program. However, you usually have to pay the full price for that insurance, which can be very costly. While it's difficult to estimate COBRA costs, as plans vary depending on how much your insurance plan cost your former employer, the average annual premiums for employer-sponsored health insurance in 2019 were $7,188 for single coverage and $20,576 for family coverage, according to a report from the Kaiser Family Foundation.

Under the March law, the government will pay COBRA premiums for laid-off employees and family members from April 1 through Sept. 30. (However, you're not eligible if you have Medicare, if you left your job voluntarily, or if you qualify for new, employer-provided health insurance before that date.) 

The stimulus law requires employers to send former workers who qualify for COBRA a notice of eligibility. But if you haven't gotten that, you can call your former employer to make sure you are signed up for coverage. Also, some states may have their own version of reduced health care, including California


Up to $1,800 per individual: Stimulus check recovery rebate credit

While most people got their first and second stimulus checks automatically, some did not due to IRS errors or their status as tax nonfilers (which often includes those who are retired, veterans or part of the SSI and SSDI programs). If you didn't receive the full amount that you were owed from the first check (up to $1,200) or the second check (up to $600), or were missing money for any of your dependents, you can claim that money on your 2020 tax return. This is called a recovery rebate credit -- here's how to file for it. You'll have to file a return to get this credit even if you don't usually file taxes


Up to $6,660 per family: The earned income tax credit

Designed to benefit people with lower incomes, the earned income tax credit can reduce your taxable income and wages. Under the Taxpayer Certainty and Disaster Tax Relief Act of 2020, part of the December coronavirus relief package, you can use your 2019 or 2020 amount of earned income to calculate your tax credit for 2020 -- a potentially important provision for people who lost their jobs during the pandemic. 

Eligibility for EITC depends on your adjusted gross income, filing status (single, head of household, widowed or married), and the number of dependents claimed. Here are the income requirements needed to qualify for the earned income tax credit this year, according to the IRS:

The tax year 2020 income requirements to claim the earned income tax credit

Children or Relatives Claimed
Maximum AGI (filing as Single, Head of Household, or Widowed) Maximum AGI (filing as Married Filing Jointly) 0 $15,820 $21,710 1 $41,756 $47,646 2 $47,440 $53,330 3 $50,594 $56,844

If you meet those income requirements, here's how much money you can claim for the earned income tax credit on your 2020 tax return: 

  • No qualifying children: $538
  • 1 qualifying child: $3,584
  • 2 qualifying children: $5,920
  • 3 or more qualifying children: $6,660

Note that if you claim this credit, the IRS may request additional information, which could result in your refund being delayed.

Up to $3,600 per dependent: Child tax credit 

The child tax credit is designed to benefit working families by allowing them to claim a refundable credit per qualifying child. Under the new stimulus law, the amount you can claim has gone up: Instead of the previous $2,000 per child, you can now claim $3,600 per child for kids 5 and under and $3,000 for children between 6 and 17. Older kids could bring you $500. There are certain income limitations -- find out if your children qualify here, and use our child tax credit calculator to estimate how much money your family might be eligible for.

Even parents of babies born or adopted in 2021 can take advantage of the credit this year. Money from the credit will be split, with half paid through your tax refund, and the other half paid monthly from July to December. (Find out more about tax credits for parents here.)

As with the earned income tax credit, claiming this credit may trigger a request for additional information, which could delay your refund. Note that you likely don't need to file an amended tax form to take advantage of this credit.


Increases to the child tax credit could mean a lot more money for your family.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Up to $8,000 for each family: Child care credit

To make child care more affordable, the new stimulus law provides a child care tax credit for kids under age 13 -- a total of up to $4,000 for one child, or $8,000 for two or more children. The credit is refundable and available to families making less than $125,000 a year. Those making between $125,000 and $400,000 may receive a partial credit. Find out more from the IRS here.

Up to $1,000 per individual: Saver's credit

If you've made eligible contributions to an IRA or an employer-sponsored retirement plan, you might be able to claim a saver's credit. To do this, you need to be age 18 or older, not be claimed as a dependent on someone else's return, and not be a student. The amount you can claim depends on your adjusted gross income and will be a portion of the contributions you made. The maximum credit you can claim is $1,000 ($2,000 if you're married filing jointly). The IRS has a chart to help you calculate your credit. 

, and why you may not be able to claim the home office deduction, even if you work remotely now. Plus, find out when you might get your third stimulus check, how much stimulus money you're eligible to receive and what we know so far about a potential fourth stimulus check.

Keep track of the coronavirus pandemic.

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