Child Tax Credits is a benefit awarded to those raising children aged 16 or under and has been designed to offer financial support to modern family life. The money is specifically designed to help the child, by enabling the parent to buy things like school uniforms, clothes, nutritious food, and so on. The amount you’re eligible for will depend upon your income, the number of children and their D.O.Bs. Visit Gov.uk today to find out more about your unique claim.
Who can claim?
You can claim Child Tax Credits for any children that you’re responsible for, up until 31st August after their 16th birthday. You are also eligible to claim if caring for a child/children under the age of 20 in approved education, training or registered with a careers service. Be sure to update the Tax Credit Office as to your child’s/children’s next steps once they turn 16, or you could lose your benefit.
Making a new claim
If you’re making a new claim, it’s worth noting that Child Tax Credit is being replaced by Universal Credit. Usually, new applications for Child Tax Credits are only valid if the applicants live outside of a Universal Credit area, although you may be able to claim when living in a UC area if you have three or more children or have reached Pension Credit Qualifying age.
How much you’ll get depends entirely upon when your children were born.
You may be awarded the ‘child element’ (up to £2,780 per year) for all of your children if they were born before 6th April 2017. On top of this, you will also receive the basic amount known as the ‘family element’ (up to £545 per year).
If one or more child was born on or after 6th April 2017, you could get the child element for up to two children but will only receive the family element if at least one child was born before this date.
If your claim started before 6th April 2017, you will be awarded both the family and child element (the child element is only applicable to children born before 6th April 2017). Any claims
after this date will receive the child element for two children but will not receive the family element unless at least one child was born before 6th April 2017.
There are exceptions to these rules however, so take a look at Gov.uk’s comprehensive guide today, to find out what you will be getting.
How to apply
If you’re a new applicant, you’ll need to order a claim form. This can be done online via Gov.uk or over the phone to HMRC via 0345 300 3900.HMRC’s phone lines opening times:
- Monday – Friday 08:00 – 20:00
- Saturday 08:00 – 16:00
- Sunday 09:00 – 17:00
When speaking with an operative, you will be asked for your NI number, income/benefits/childcare details and the number of hours your work per week, so be sure to have this info to hand. It will take approximately two weeks for your claim form to be delivered.
If you need to inform the Tax Office about a change of circumstance, you can do so online without ordering a form.
What happens if you’re dissatisfied with your application?
To make the process as smooth as possible, be sure to include all relevant details of your new or ongoing claim in your correspondence (info about payments, any conversations you’ve had with Child Tax Credit Office etc.).
Your claim will be handled by an Independent Adjudicator.
Gov.uk operates a password protected log in service, so be sure to keep your username and password complex and secure. Most correspondences will require your National Insurance number, so it goes without saying that you should never leave your browser open and unattended or share any sensitive information.