Who Receives the Working Family Credit?

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Updated March 2018

Minnesota’s Working Family Tax Credit encourages and supports work, makes the tax system more equitable, and helps working people across the state to meet their basic needs and support their families. In 2015, more than 330,000 households received the Working Family Credit, which is 12.3 percent of all Minnesota households who file state income taxes.[1] Minnesotans claiming the Working Family Credit live all across the state: 49 percent in Greater Minnesota and 51 percent in the Twin Cities metro area.[2] 

More than half of all states, including Minnesota, have tax credits like the Working Family Credit that are based on the federal Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), and build on the EITC’s documented success in supporting work, reducing poverty, and improving the health and education of children.[3] Children in households receiving the EITC are also more likely to attend college and earn more as adults.[4] Because these tax credits are received once a year, after families file their taxes, many families use their credits to secure a stronger financial future by building their savings or reducing debt.
Table showing tax year 2017 working family credit parameters
Minnesota’s Working Family Credit is calculated based on a family’s earnings and family size, and it can only be claimed by people with earnings from work. Families with two or more children qualify for larger credits on average, and households with no dependent children qualify for much less. The Working Family Credit offsets a portion of the significant state and local taxes that low- and moderate-income people pay. Even when including the Working Family Credit, on average, lower-income Minnesota households pay 11.5 percent or more of their incomes in state and local taxes.[5]

The table below provides information about the importance of the Working Family Credit to each Minnesota county and the state as a whole.

Working Family Credits Received by County of Residence, Tax Year 2015[6]

Aitkin
Total Working Family Credits received: $776,624
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 1,084
Average credit: $716
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 15.7%

Anoka
Total Working Family Credits received: $14,431,701
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 18,677
Average credit: $773
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 11.2%

Becker
Total Working Family Credits received: $1,684,190
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 2,181
Average credit: $772
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 14.8%

Beltrami
Total Working Family Credits received: $2,426,658
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 3,128
Average credit: $776
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 17.4%

Benton
Total Working Family Credits received: $2,195,912
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 2,887
Average credit: $761
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 15.6%

Big Stone
Total Working Family Credits received: $213,304
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 280
Average credit: $762
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 12.4%

Blue Earth
Total Working Family Credits received: $2,741,272
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 4,008
Average credit: $684
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 13.8%

Brown
Total Working Family Credits received: $1,168,223
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 1,581
Average credit: $739
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 12.2%

Carlton
Total Working Family Credits received: $1,517,296
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 2,120
Average credit: $716
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 13.7%

Carver
Total Working Family Credits received: $2,143,690
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 3,037
Average credit: $706
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 6.7%

Cass
Total Working Family Credits received: $1,617,051
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 2,090
Average credit: $774
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 15.7%

Chippewa
Total Working Family Credits received: $693,315
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 837
Average credit: $828
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 14.3%

Chisago
Total Working Family Credits received: $1,999,905
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 2,699
Average credit: $741
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 10.6%

Clay
Total Working Family Credits received: $2,634,166
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 3,400
Average credit: $775
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 13.1%

Clearwater
Total Working Family Credits received: $438,282
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 577
Average credit: $760
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 15.9%

Cook
Total Working Family Credits received: $207,816
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 317
Average credit: $656
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 11.5%

Cottonwood
Total Working Family Credits received: $610,447
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 784
Average credit: $779
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 14.5%

Crow Wing
Total Working Family Credits received: $3,541,327
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 4,669
Average credit: $758
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 15.8%

Dakota
Total Working Family Credits received: $15,133,697
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 19,606
Average credit: $772
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 9.7%

Dodge
Total Working Family Credits received: $836,907
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 1,054
Average credit: $794
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 11.0%

Douglas
Total Working Family Credits received: $1,502,901
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 2,125
Average credit: $707
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 11.8%

Faribault
Total Working Family Credits received: $776,553
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 1,002
Average credit: $775
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 15.1%

Fillmore
Total Working Family Credits received: $920,810
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 1,217
Average credit: $757
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 12.9%

Freeborn
Total Working Family Credits received: $1,799,007
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 2,321
Average credit: $775
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 16.1%

Goodhue
Total Working Family Credits received: $1,716,540
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 2,335
Average credit: $735
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 10.5%

Grant
Total Working Family Credits received: $275,705
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 357
Average credit: $772
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 13.4%

Hennepin
Total Working Family Credits received: $52,060,432
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 67,857
Average credit: $767
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 11.5%

Houston
Total Working Family Credits received: $692,895
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 1,076
Average credit: $644
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 12.1%

Hubbard
Total Working Family Credits received: $1,130,493
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 1,456
Average credit: $776
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 16.5%

Isanti
Total Working Family Credits received: $1,891,501
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 2,426
Average credit: $780
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 13.6%

Itasca
Total Working Family Credits received: $2,192,675
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 2,951
Average credit: $743
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 14.9%

Jackson
Total Working Family Credits received: $491,549
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 628
Average credit: $783
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 12.6%

Kanabec
Total Working Family Credits received: $874,587
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 1,163
Average credit: $752
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 16.9%

Kandiyohi
Total Working Family Credits received: $2,896,558
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 3,379
Average credit: $857
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 16.5%

Kittson
Total Working Family Credits received: $167,022
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 202
Average credit: $827
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 10.8%

Koochiching
Total Working Family Credits received: $683,899
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 941
Average credit: $727
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 16.4%

Lac Qui Parle
Total Working Family Credits received: $273,631
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 397
Average credit: $689
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 12.3%

Lake
Total Working Family Credits received: $433,187
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 596
Average credit: $727
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 12.1%

Lake of the Woods
Total Working Family Credits received: $210,850
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 302
Average credit: $698
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 16.3%

Le Sueur
Total Working Family Credits received: $1,129,022
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 1,458
Average credit: $774
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 10.8%

Lincoln
Total Working Family Credits received: $214,905
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 317
Average credit: $678
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 13.5%

Lyon
Total Working Family Credits received: $1,441,630
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 1,721
Average credit: $838
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 14.8%

McLeod
Total Working Family Credits received: $1,621,212
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 2,117
Average credit: $766
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 12.0%

Mahnomen
Total Working Family Credits received: $305,274
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 338
Average credit: $903
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 16.6%

Marshall
Total Working Family Credits received: $378,802
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 474
Average credit: $799
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 11.2%

Martin
Total Working Family Credits received: $1,129,759
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 1,485
Average credit: $761
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 14.9%

Meeker
Total Working Family Credits received: $1,037,949
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 1,288
Average credit: $806
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 12.2%

Mille Lacs
Total Working Family Credits received: $1,449,641
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 1,849
Average credit: $784
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 16.2%

Morrison
Total Working Family Credits received: $1,827,460
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 2,411
Average credit: $758
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 16.1%

Mower
Total Working Family Credits received: $2,482,188
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 3,117
Average credit: $796
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 17.5%

Murray
Total Working Family Credits received: $335,992
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 428
Average credit: $785
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 10.6%

Nicollet
Total Working Family Credits received: $1,345,398
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 1,882
Average credit: $715
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 12.5%

Nobles
Total Working Family Credits received: $1,257,056
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 1,587
Average credit: $792
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 15.9%

Norman
Total Working Family Credits received: $360,608
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 408
Average credit: $884
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 14.1%

Olmsted
Total Working Family Credits received: $6,349,285
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 8,057
Average credit: $788
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 11.1%

Otter Tail
Total Working Family Credits received: $2,858,244
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 3,745
Average credit: $763
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 13.8%

Pennington
Total Working Family Credits received: $747,875
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 1,004
Average credit: $745
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 14.9%

Pine
Total Working Family Credits received: $1,531,632
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 2,027
Average credit: $756
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 17.0%

Pipestone
Total Working Family Credits received: $514,266
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 609
Average credit: $844
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 14.1%

Polk
Total Working Family Credits received: $1,556,142
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 1,950
Average credit: $798
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 14.2%

Pope
Total Working Family Credits received: $425,378
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 583
Average credit: $730
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 11.2%

Ramsey
Total Working Family Credits received: $33,707,011
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 39,892
Average credit: $845
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 15.9%

Red Lake
Total Working Family Credits received: $180,532
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 230
Average credit: $785
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 13.6%

Redwood
Total Working Family Credits received: $807,005
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 997
Average credit: $809
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 13.3%

Renville
Total Working Family Credits received: $736,215
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 919
Average credit: $801
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 12.8%

Rice
Total Working Family Credits received: $2,981,208
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 3,613
Average credit: $825
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 12.9%

Rock
Total Working Family Credits received: $398,738
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 513
Average credit: $777
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 12.2%

Roseau
Total Working Family Credits received: $835,514
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 1,074
Average credit: $778
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 14.4%

St. Louis
Total Working Family Credits received: $8,037,948
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 11,817
Average credit: $680
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 13.2%

Scott
Total Working Family Credits received: $4,541,601
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 5,827
Average credit: $779
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 8.9%

Sherburne
Total Working Family Credits received: $3,358,306
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 4,414
Average credit: $761
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 10.6%

Sibley
Total Working Family Credits received: $651,081
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 840
Average credit: $775
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 11.8%

Stearns
Total Working Family Credits received: $7,630,067
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 9,640
Average credit: $792
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 13.9%

Steele
Total Working Family Credits received: $2,025,221
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 2,436
Average credit: $831
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 13.7%

Stevens
Total Working Family Credits received: $284,160
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 404
Average credit: $703
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 9.8%

Swift
Total Working Family Credits received: $534,352
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 656
Average credit: $815
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 14.6%

Todd
Total Working Family Credits received: $1,346,229
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 1,780
Average credit: $756
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 16.8%

Traverse
Total Working Family Credits received: $155,199
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 206
Average credit: $753
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 14.4%

Wabasha
Total Working Family Credits received: $871,076
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 1,176
Average credit: $741
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 11.1%

Wadena
Total Working Family Credits received: $834,514
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 1,055
Average credit: $791
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 18.2%

Waseca
Total Working Family Credits received: $952,645
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 1,253
Average credit: $760
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 14.3%

Washington
Total Working Family Credits received: $7,117,159
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 9,692
Average credit: $734
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 8.1%

Watonwan
Total Working Family Credits received: $673,552
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 799
Average credit: $843
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 16.1%

Wilkin
Total Working Family Credits received: $257,778
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 349
Average credit: $739
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 12.0%

Winona
Total Working Family Credits received: $1,724,897
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 2,629
Average credit: $656
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 12.2%

Wright
Total Working Family Credits received: $4,244,789
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 5,726
Average credit: $741
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 9.6%

Yellow Medicine
Total Working Family Credits received: $482,265
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 609
Average credit: $792
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 12.8%

Undesignated/Other
Total Working Family Credits received: $7,932,230
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 15,144
Average credit: $524
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 5.3%

TOTAL
Total Working Family Credits received: $251,603,588
Number of households receiving the Working Family Credit: 330,292
Average credit: $762
Percent of households who receive the Working Family Credit: 11.6%

By Nan Madden and Ben Horowitz

 

[1] Minnesota Department of Revenue, Tax Year 2015 Minnesota Income Tax Statistics by County. In this analysis, the number of households refers to the number of tax returns.
[2]
House Research, The Federal Earned Income Tax Credit and Minnesota Working Family Credit: An Overview, January 2018.
[3] Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, Policy Basics: State Earned Income Tax Credits, August 2017.
[4] Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, EITC and Child Tax Credit Promote Work, Reduce Poverty, and Support Children’s Development, Research Finds, October 2015.
[5]
Minnesota Department of Revenue, 2017 Minnesota Tax Incidence Study, March 2017.
[6] Minnesota Department of Revenue, Tax Year 2015 Minnesota Income Tax Statistics by County.

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