Child Benefit and Guardian’s Allowance: Making a claim

This section of the website explains how to make a claim for child benefit and guardian’s allowance.

Child Benefit

Claiming child benefit

Form CH2 is the child benefit claim form. There are 3 main ways to obtain a claim form:

The form is also available in Welsh.

The completed claim form should be sent to:

Child Benefit Office
Washington
Newcastle Upon Tyne
NE88 1ZD

HMRC has produced guidance notes (CH2) to help claimants fill in the claim form. The guidance goes through the claim form page by page.

More detailed information for advisers about making a claim is available in the HMRC child benefit and guardian’s allowance manual.

When to claim

Child Benefit should be claimed within three months of becoming entitled to it. Late claims can only be backdated up to three months.

HMRC recommend that a claim should be made as soon as:

Backdating

Claims can normally only be backdated up to 3 months, and there is no need to show why the claim was late.

There are special rules for backdating for refugees. Providing the claim is made within three months of being awarded refugee status, the claim can be backdated to the date the person first claimed asylum. The HMRC child benefit and guardian’s allowance manual explains these rules in full.

Documentation and evidence

HMRC generally require an original birth or adoption certification along with a completed claim form. HMRC advise claimants to send the form anyway, even if they don’t have the form.

One exception to this requirement is if someone has claimed child benefit for the same child previously.

HMRC have produced guidance for claimants about birth and adoption certificates.

Claims for both child benefit and guardian’s allowance

Under child benefit and guardian’s allowance legislation, where a person who claims child benefit also appears to have entitlement to guardian’s allowance for the same child or qualifying young person, the child benefit claim may be treated alternatively or additionally as a claim for guardian’s allowance.

Where a person who claims guardian’s allowance also appears to have entitlement to child benefit for the same child or qualifying young person, the guardian’s allowance claim may be treated alternatively or additionally as a claim for child benefit.

Guardian’s Allowance

Claiming guardian’s allowance

Claims for guardian’s allowance are to be made on form BG1. This form can be downloaded from the GOV.UK website or a paper copy can be obtained from the guardian’s allowance unit (0300 200 3101; Textphone 0300 200 3103).

A set of notes accompany the claim form which help claimants complete the form.

The form should be sent to:

The Guardian's Allowance Unit
Child Benefit Office
PO Box 1
Newcastle upon Tyne
NE88 1AA

More detailed technical information for advisers about claiming guardian’s allowance is available in the HMRC child benefit and guardian’s allowance manual.

Backdating

Guardian’s allowance claims can generally only be backdated three months. As with child benefit above, special rules apply for refugees. In some cases, it can be backdated further if a claim for child benefit has also been made.

Documentation and evidence

HMRC ask for original copies of the child’s birth certificate and the original death certificate of the parent (or parents).

Last reviewed/updated 28 April 2017