Child Benefit is a government financial assistance programme for those responsible for children under 16 or under 20 if they’re in approved education or training. Here’s what you can expect:
- Monetary Allowance: Regular payments for each child, usually every four weeks.
- National Insurance Credits: These contribute to your State Pension.
- National Insurance Number for your child: No need to apply; the number is issued close to the child’s 16th birthday.
Note: You should still claim Child Benefit to obtain these advantages even if you opt out of receiving the payments.
Changes in Circumstances
Always report any changes to the Child Benefit Office. This can include changes in family composition, residence, or your child’s educational status.
Rates and Payment Schedule
- Eldest or only child: £24.00
- Additional children: £15.90 per child
Payments are typically made every four weeks on a Monday or Tuesday. However, single parents or those receiving certain other benefits may opt for weekly payments.
Special Cases: Split Families, Adoption, and Fostering
- Each parent receives £24.00 per week per child if the children live separately with each parent.
- Claim as soon as the child comes to live with you, you don’t have to wait for the adoption to be finalised.
- You’re eligible for Child Benefit if the local council is not financially supporting the child’s accommodation or maintenance.
High-Income Child Benefit Charge
If you or your partner’s adjusted net income exceeds £50,000, you’ll be subjected to the High Income Child Benefit Charge. Use the Child Benefit tax calculator to estimate the charge. Those earning £60,000 or above may have no extra money from Child Benefit.
Making a Claim
Generally, you qualify if you’re responsible for a child under 16 and live in the UK. You can claim Child Benefit 48 hours after the birth is registered, or they come to live with you. The benefit can be backdated for up to three months.
- Your child’s birth or adoption certificate
- Your bank or building society details
- National Insurance numbers for you and your partner
- By Post
- By Phone