BRIT parents and guardians across the country are entitled to child benefit payments to help them with childcare costs.
Higher-income families who earn more than £50,000 will need to pay more tax to receive their weekly cash handouts. But when do child benefit payments stop?
Alamy Child benefit payments stop on August 31 after the child you are responsible for turns 16-years-old
What age do child benefits stop?
Child benefit payments stop on 31 August, on or after your child’s 16th birthday.
At this age, your teen will get their own registered National Insurance Number.
But you are still entitled to cash after they turn 16 – if they choose to stay in “approved” education or training.
Once your child has reached their final year of secondary school, the Child Benefit Office will send you a letter.
They will ask you to confirm what their post-school plans are.
But to make the process quicker, you can get in touch with the Child Benefit Office and tell them about your youngster’s plans as soon as you become aware.
What education or training qualifications are approved?
To keep receiving the weekly payments, your child must be in “full-time” post-education or training approved by the Child Benefit Office.
Those qualifications are:
A Levels or similar
NVQs and other vocational qualifications up to level 3
home education – if started before your child turned 16
The courses must amount to more than an average of 12 hours a week of supervised study, or be a course-related work experience placement.
But if they’re paid for by an employer, or considered to be “advanced” like university degrees or BTEC Higher National Certificates, they will not be approved.
How can you be entitled to tax credits?
Parents and guardians on a low income may be eligible for child tax credits.
If you’re responsible for a child under the age of 16, or your child is under 20 and in full-time education, you can claim the tax credit.
The amount you receive depends on your income, whether your child has a disability and how many children live with you.
In the current 2017 to 2018 tax year, parents and guardians can receive up to:
£545 annually if they have one or more children
£2,780 annually for each child
£3,175 annually for each disabled child
£1,290 annually for each severely disabled child
The tax credit will not affect the child benefits you receive.
But you can only claim for the children you’re responsible for.
If your annual household income is £16,105 or below, you will receive the maximum amount for each child tax credit element you’re entitled to.
What did the High Court say about a two-child benefit limit?
On Friday (April 20), campaigners lost a challenge to the government’s two-child cap on some benefits.
The case was brought forward by the Child Poverty Action Group, the BBC reported.
Three families’ lawyers said the cap was incompatible with human rights law.
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But a High Court judge ruled limiting tax and universal credits to the first two children was lawful.
A Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) spokesman said: “We value and recognise the important role of people who look after children who would otherwise be in care.
“That’s why we will be fully reviewing the judgement and considering our next steps with regards to non-parental carers.”