29 December 2020

New rules for EEA and Swiss nationals from 1 January 2021

From 1 January 2021 there will be new rules for how European Economic Area (EEA) and Swiss nationals access Child Benefit or tax credits. HMRC have provided the following overview of the new rules:

Current Rules for EEA and Swiss Nationals in the UK

EEA and Swiss nationals are able to access certain non-contributory benefits, including Child Benefit and tax credits in line with EU rules. EEA and Swiss nationals who are resident in the UK before the 31 December 2020 should apply to the EU Settlement Scheme to protect their entitlement to access Child Benefit and tax credits.

Changes from 1 January 2021

In-country access to benefits:

The rights of EEA and Swiss nationals to access Child Benefit and tax credits will be aligned with those of non-EEA nationals. This means that EEA and Swiss nationals entering the UK from 1 January 2021 will usually not be able to access Child Benefit or tax credits until they have been granted indefinite leave to remain by the Home Office, typically after 5 years’ residence.

Rules on export of child benefit:

From 1 January 2021, the rules on claiming Child Benefit or tax credits for a child residing in the EEA and Switzerland are changing. From this date it will not be possible to claim Child Benefit or tax credits for children residing in the EEA or Switzerland unless the claimant is in scope of the EU Withdrawal Agreement.

Guidance on the Withdrawal Agreement can be found on GOV.UK 

We will be updating relevant pages on this website in the coming weeks.