The Child Tax Credit program can reduce the Federal tax you owe by $1,000 for each qualifying child under the age of 17.
In order to qualify for this benefit program, the child you are claiming the credit for must be a son, daughter, foster child, brother, sister, stepbrother, stepsister, or a descendant of any of them (for example, your grandchild, niece, or nephew). An adopted child is always treated as your own child. An adopted child includes a child lawfully placed with you for legal adoption.
No application is needed to use this program. However, you must file your taxes using the guidelines posted on the Schedule 8812 (Form 1040 or 1040A, Child tax Credit page.