Child Benefit and Guardian's Allowance: Intermediaries
This section of the site outlines how to become an intermediary in respect of child benefit and guardian’s allowance and the processes HMRC have in place that can help intermediaries.
The processes for child benefit are the same as for tax credit’s intermediaries, using joint forms and a shared support team – the Tax Credit Office External Relations Team.
An intermediary can be one of the following:
- voluntary organisation
- a friend or relative
- someone who explains things to you if you have difficulty understanding English, for example an interpreter.
It also includes other organisations such as welfare rights workers within Local Authorities.
According to HMRC, an intermediary can:
- discuss their clients child benefit claim
- provide information about their clients to the child benefit office
They cannot receive the payment on behalf of a child benefit claimant (unless they are also an appointee) and they cannot get any award notices or other decision notices (unless they are also an appointee or an agent).
HMRC authorise intermediaries using form TC689.
If it is a joint claim, both claimants should sign the form. For joint claims that have ended, it is sufficient for only your client to sign the form (without the other partner). In such cases HMRC should give all information about the previous joint claim and should not require a signature from the second partner.
To avoid delay in setting up the authority, you must ensure that all questions are completed and that signature(s) have been obtained. HMRC will not process incomplete TC689s.
Once logged on the system, the TC689 lasts for 12 months unless a different end date is specified.
If you deal with tax credits on a regular basis you may wish to become a registered intermediary which will allow you to submit the TC689 electronically. See below for details of how to do this.
Note: if you are dealing with the Adjudicator's Office on behalf of someone else, you will need to use the Adjudicator's Office authority form, which is available on their website.
Last reviewed/updated 5 May 2023