Tax Credits: Contacting HMRC about tax credits

This section of the site gives you information about the different ways of contacting HMRC about tax credits. It also gives information about security procedures in place when contacting the tax credits helpline.

Tax credit digital services

HMRC are gradually introducing changes which are line with the Government’s drive for increased digital services.

On-line service

HMRC have an on-line service called the Personal Tax Account for all individuals to be able to transact with them digitally. The personal tax account is continually being developed and covers a variety of services provided right across HMRC lines of business, covering income tax, tax payments, self-assessment returns and it also includes the tax credit on-line service. The tax credit on-line service is called ‘Manage your tax credits’ and can be accessed either directly from Manage your tax credits, or via the personal tax account by following the links to the tax credit part of the personal tax account.

Claimants can manage their tax credits online through GOV.UK Here they can report most changes of circumstances, find out how much their next payment will be and when it's due, and complete their renewal after they receive their renewal pack. Once they have completed their renewal declaration, claimants can also check the progress of their renewal.

Claimants can also use this to:

Where HMRC have asked a claimant to send in items of paperwork or evidence, they will often invite the claimant to reply on-line and if so, claimants may be invited to attach up to 3 photographs of evidence at a time using the on-line service.

To use this service, tax credit claimants need to register with the Government Gateway service. Claimants can use their existing account if they already use Government Gateway for self-assessment, others will need to set up a Government Gateway account. Each time a person uses their Government Gateway account, they will need to have a mobile phone or landline telephone nearby to receive a unique 6-digit code which will be sent automatically to them as they ‘log-in’. The service is accessed via GOV.UK.


HMRC have withdrawn their webchat service for tax credits from 1 December 2021.


The HMRC App is available for people who have a compatible smart phone (android and I-phone). It is free to download from the ‘app store’ and provides a variety of digital services across HMRC lines of business. Tax credit claimants can check the amount and due date of their next payment using the App, and they can notify most changes of circumstances and complete their tax credit renewals.

Claimants can use fingerprint identification available on certain devices to enable them to access the App. HMRC does not receive or have access to any fingerprint data, the app makes use of features that are built into the user’s handset.


The main telephone number is the tax credit helpline: 0345 300 3900 (NGT text relay for anyone who cannot hear or speak on the phone: dial 18001 then 0345 300 3900). From abroad, you can ring +44 2890 538 192.

The helpline is open 8am-6pm, Mondays to Fridays (closed on weekends and Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day). These hours may change from time to time, so check GOV.UK for the latest opening hours.

The telephone line is very busy and HMRC say the best times to call are between 8.30 am and 10.30 am and 2pm to 4pm, Tuesdays to Thursdays.

HMRC use an automated response system to direct callers to the helpline (sometimes referred to as ITA). This is designed to help direct callers to relevant information on the GOV.UK website, provide basic generic messages which may help answer some queries and direct the call to an adviser who can help with the call query. The system relies on speech recognition and LITRG have produced a helpful guide to offer some useful hints and tips on using this system (please note the e-mail options to notify changes of name/address are not currently relevant for tax credits).

Callers to the helpline can be invited  to sign-up for Voice ID. The claimant will be required to say a phrase five times to register for the service and when they call in future, they can be verified based on their voice.HMRC have published a privacy notice about how they use voice identification.

This number can be used to: 

Advisers who are from registered organisations can use the intermediaries helpline as an alternative to the helpline for a similar range of issues. More information can be found in our intermediaries section.


By post

HMRC are in the process of changing their postal addresses whilst they move to an automated system. Most HMRC postal addresses for tax credits are distinguished by specific business postcodes.

See below for items sent to HMRC by courier.


Renewal forms should be sent to:

Tax Credit Office
HM Revenue and Customs

Reporting changes of circumstances

Change of circumstances
HMRC - Tax Credit Office

More information about reporting changes can be found in our how to notify changes section.


HMRC – Tax Credit Office


HMRC - Tax Credit Office

Once a dispute or complaint is received by HMRC, a letter should be sent acknowledging receipt and giving the claimant a named caseworker and direct dial number.

Mandatory Reconsiderations/Appeals

HMRC – Tax credit Office

Other correspondence

- Responses to requests from HMRC for information about a new claim or change of circumstance
- Responses to requests from HMRC for information relating to renewals
- Responses and follow up correspondence relating to hardship requests (TC1133 and TC2036)
- Intermediaries, Agents and Appointees

HMRC – Tax Credit Office

Correspondence relating to the 2-child limit:

HMRC - Tax Credit Office

Responding to an HMRC check:

HMRC - Tax Credit Office


HMRC Tax Credit Office

Using a courier

Use this address for all post items being delivered to HMRC to either a closed HMRC site, a PO BOX or BX postcode by couriers.

HM Revenue and Customs 
Benton Park View 
Newcastle Upon Tyne 
NE98 1ZZ 
United Kingdom

Face to face advice

Historically, HMRC had enquiry centres that claimants were able to visit, albeit they were advised to arrange an appointment first.

In March 2012, HMRC announced that they would replace their Enquiry Centre network with a new system of support for taxpayers and tax credits claimants who need extra help with their tax affairs. Following a pilot in the North East of England to test the new approach, which included closing several Enquiry Centres, HMRC decided that the benefits of the new service offered a better system of support for customers. The new service was rolled out across the UK at the end of May 2014, with a programme of closure seeing the remaining Enquiry Centres all closed by 30 June 2014. 

The service means that the telephone helplines are the initial way that customers can speak to HMRC. Customers who are identified as needing extra help (according to criteria HMRC have developed) will then be offered support best suited to them, this might still be by phone, but with a specialist telephone adviser who can deal with the queries in-depth or by arranging a set time to call or perhaps a face to face meeting with someone from HMRC at a place convenient to the customer, calling on a team of HMRC specialist mobile advisers. More information can be found here.

Claimants with disabilities may need face to face advice by way of home visit. Following the closure of HMRC enquiry centres, claimants who are deaf, hard of hearing or have a speech impairment and are unable to use the telephone can use an online form to request a face to face appointment.

Claimants with disabilities

For those who have disabilities, effectively communicating with HMRC can be difficult. At present, no central computer system records special needs that a claimant might have, therefore reference should be made in all communications of any specific needs that HMRC should be aware of.

HMRC do provide special services for those with particular needs. A full list of all services is published on GOV.UK.

HMRC’s improved digital services, which are also optimised for people who use screen readers, may offer a more suitable alternative for some.

Claimants with disabilities may need face to face advice by way of home visit. Following the closure of HMRC enquiry centres, claimants who are deaf, hard of hearing or have a speech impairment and are unable to use the telephone can use an online form to request a face to face appointment.

Translation services

HMRC offer translation services to those whose first language isn’t English.

According to their information HMRC say:

'You can use a friend or family member as an interpreter when you phone HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC).

They must be over 16 and will need to be in the same room as you when you all HMRC.

You can also ask for information in another language using webchat.

HMRC may also be able to organise an interpreter for you.'

Useful tips when contacting HMRC

When dealing with overpayments, issues often arise about whether a claimant has reported a particular change or whether they have been given incorrect advice by HMRC. It is much easier to dispute an overpayment if the claimant has evidence of their contacts with the department. We recommend that claimants:

Security arrangements

HMRC use a security system on the tax credit helpline called IDAS (ID Authentication Service).

How does IDAS work?

IDAS uses information held by credit reference agency Experian, combined with HMRC’s own data to verify the callers identity.

The first time a claimant calls, they will be asked whether they consent to HMRC using Experian data. HMRC will need the claimants NINO, DOB and name at this point. If the claimant agrees to this, they will be asked questions based on the Experian data. The helpline advisers cannot see a full credit report, they will be prompted by the system with only certain questions based on that credit report. Questions will be things like ‘Who is your mobile phone contract with?’.

If the claimant does not consent, or there is not enough data from Experian to generate these questions, the claimant will be asked questions based on HMRC information drawn from various sources.

Once this process has been successfully passed, the claimant will be asked to set up some shared secrets which will be used to identify them on subsequent calls. If the claimant declines to set up shared secrets they will need to go through the whole process again on their next call.

How does IDAS affect intermediaries?

Intermediaries should not be asked to go through the IDAS process. It is for claimants only. The normal security questions for intermediaries (based on the TC689) and agents (64-8) should continue to be used.

If an intermediary does not have an authority in place, but has the claimant with them, the helpline will ask the claimant to go through the IDAS process. Once the security check is passed, the claimant can ask the helpline adviser to speak directly to the intermediary.

Last reviewed/updated 26 November 2021