17 August 2017

Reminder for people claiming CTC /Child Benefit for children aged 16 and over

HMRC have issued a press release to remind claimants that they need to know whether or not a young person included in a child tax credit or child benefit claim is staying on in full-time non-advanced education or approved training once they turn 16.

Anyone claiming child tax credit or child benefit for a young person aged 16 + who is staying in full-time non-advanced education or approved training should notify HMRC to let them know, otherwise HMRC will stop payments for them at the end of August.

Child benefit and child tax credit can continue to be paid for young people aged 16-19 if they are in full-time non-advanced education or undertaking approved training but HMRC’s systems are designed to automatically stop payments on 31 August following a child’s 16th birthday, and (for tax credits) again following their 18th and 19th birthdays, so its important to tell HMRC if they’re still in full-time education (below level 3 or the equivalent) or in approved training.

If a young person plans to continue to advanced level education e.g. by going to university, HMRC guidance says that payments can be paid to 31 August (ie the last day of the academic year) unless the young person changes their plans and decides before that date to not continue to advanced level.

Technically the legislation says claimants must tell child benefit and tax credits separately.  However, quite often HMRC can pass a notification between both offices so claimants only need to tell them once, but if they offer to do this, we recommend claimants make a note of the call and check that their awards are correct. Similarly, anyone who notifies HMRC using the on-line service should take care to make it clear that both records should be updated with the information.

If the young person subsequently changes their mind and leaves college or training, claimants must tell HMRC so that payment for them can stop, otherwise they will be overpaid.

Claimants can notify HMRC either on-line, by telephone or by post.

Contact details are available on the GOV.UK website 

Tax credits

On-line: Manage your tax credits (using Government Gateway account)

Telephone: 0345 300 3900 (textphone 0345 300 3909

Child Benefit

On-line: Report changes (using Government Gateway account)

Telephone: 0300 200 3100 (textphone 0300 200 3103)