MILLIONS of households will get a child benefit payment boost from April.
Child benefit is paid to families with kids up to the age of 16 – or 20 if they are in full-time education or registered on a government-approved course.
It’s paid every four weeks and there’s no limit to how many children you can claim for.
However, only one person can get it for each child.
The government subsidy is aimed to help with the costs associated with a dependent.
The payments are rising in line with inflation from April 12, 2021, the government has confirmed. Below we explain how it’ll affect you.
What help is available for parents?
CHILDCARE can be a costly business. Here is how you can get help.
- 30 hours free childcare – Parents of three and four-year-olds can apply for 30 hours free childcare a week.
To qualify you must work at least 16 hours a week at the national living or minimum wage and earn less than £100,000 a year.
- Tax credits – For children under 20, some families can get help with childcare costs.
- Tax-free childcare – Available to working families and the self-employed, for every £8 you put in the government will add an extra £2.
How child benefit is changing
For the eldest child, or if you only have one, households currently get £21.05 per week plus £13.95 for any additional kids.
From April 12, this will increase by 10p to £21.15 per week and by 5p to £14 per week for additional children.
It means the monthly payments will be £84.60 for an eldest or only child, up from £84.20, and £56 for any additional children, up from £55.80.
Over the course of 12 months, this will boost your payments by £5.20 for an eldest or only child, and by £2.60 for any additional children.
The payment comes through every four weeks on a Monday or a Tuesday and the claimant will also be awarded national insurance credits which can count towards their state pension.
However, if a claimant or their partner earns more than £50,000 a year, keep in mind a fraction of it must be repaid at the end of the tax year.
This is at a rate of 1% for every £100 earned over £50,000. If over £60,000 is earned in a year, the whole amount must be repaid.
How to claim child benefit
You can claim child benefit as soon as you’ve registered the birth of your child, or they come to live with you.
To claim, you need to fill in a form called CH2, which you can download on the Gov.uk website, and send it to the Child Benefit Office.
You can find the address on the form.
If your child is adopted, you also need to send their original adoption certificate with the form.
Alternatively, if you simply want to add a child to an existing claim, call the child benefit helpline on 0300 200 3100.
When you call, you’ll need your National Insurance Number and the child’s birth certificate.
Keep in mind it can take six to 12 weeks to process a new claim, or longer if you’re new to the UK.
Child benefit can then be backdated for up to three months.
Parents have lost out on £6.8billion since the child benefit cap was introduced in 2013.
Meanwhile, thousands of parents have been warned they could be forced to repay child benefits.
We explain how to check if you’re owed £1,100 a year in child benefit if your income has dropped.