Tips and Advice

Have Kids In Summer Day Camp? There’s a Tax Credit for That

Do you have children in summer day camp? You could receive a tax credit.
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Written by:
Edited by:
Kristin Marino verified

tax breaks sign Summer means that school is out. Your kids might be enrolled in a summer day camp program while you work, look for work, or are going to school full-time.

Having your children in summer day camp or day care can be a strain on your finances, but there is good news. You may be eligible to receive tax relief on those costs (as a federal child care tax credit) from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

The Run Down

  • You may be eligible for a tax credit from the IRS if your kids are in summer day camp.
  • Your children have to be under the age of thirteen.
  • Both spouses have to be either working or seeking work (unless one of you is a full-time student).
  • You might qualify for up to 35 percent on eligible expenses.
  • If eligible, you will need to file IRS Form 2441 with your tax return.

If you have children under the age of thirteen, existing IRS rules state that up to 35 percent of qualifying day camp expenses may be claimed as a federal child care tax credit. Keep in mind that only summer day camps are eligible, not overnight or send-away camps, and according to the IRS both spouses must work or be seeking work (unless one is a full-time student).

The size of the tax credit depends on how much you earn and the number of children you have who are younger than 13. You can count up to $3,000 in child care expenses for one child or up to $6,000 for two or more children. Also, the more you earn, the lower the percentage of credit. Families with an income under $15,000 a year may be able to claim up to 35 percent of qualified expenses. Those who earn over $43,000 per year may be able to claim up to 20 percent of qualified expenses.

In order to claim the tax relief credit for your child’s summer day camp program, you will have to file Form 2441 with your tax return. Be sure to include the summer day camp or care provider’s employer-identification number (EIN) or Social Security number with Form 2441. You can find this information on the bills from the camp or other provider. Keep copies of those bills so you will have that information available when it comes time to file your taxes. (For more information about the rules, contact the IRS by calling them toll-free at 800-829-3676 to ask that a form be mailed to you.)