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HMRC calls for online tax credit renewals

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) is calling on people to renew their tax credits claim online following significant improvements to the online system ahead of the July deadline.

Those who fail to renew by the July deadline will have their tax credit payments ceased. Previously, the tax credit renewals process involved calling the HMRC phone line or renewing by post; but this is no longer the case and HMRC is urging people to beat the offline queues and finalise claims online.

As part of the tax credits renewal, customers must inform HMRC of any changes to their personal circumstances such as changes to working hours, childcare costs or income.

It’s easy to notify HMRC of changes to your personal circumstances via GOV.UK after you receive your renewal pack.

The online renewal service appears to be very popular, with almost 90 per cent of those using it saying they were happy with the new system, which takes 10-20 minutes to complete on average.

For those that cannot complete their renewal online, a special support team is in place to proactively assist HMRC’s most vulnerable customers.

Nick Lodge, director general, HMRC’s Benefits and Credits, said: “This is an exceptionally busy time of the year for HMRC, as millions of people renew their tax credits.

“Phone lines may be very busy with long wait times possible. Using our online service means that you can renew at any time of the day or night, and on any device, without having to call us at all.

“Online help can also answer most queries or issues that you may have. We urge everyone who can to go online.

“People should check their details and renew early to ensure they get the right money. The sooner people renew their claim, the sooner we can check payments are correct, meaning we avoid paying too little money, or too much, which claimants then have to pay back.”

Earlier this week we discussed the new criteria that self-employed professionals must adhere to in order to claim Working Tax Credit (WTC).

HMRC will be asking self-employed WTC claimants with earnings below a set threshold – based on total working hours and the National Minimum Wage – to provide evidence of working on a commercial basis, with a view to achieving a profit.

Online help and information on tax credit renewals is available on GOV.UK or via HMRC’s customer service Twitter feed @HMRCcustomers.

Alternatively, don’t hesitate to discuss your affairs with us. Please contact us online or give us a call on 0800 0523 555 and we’ll put you in touch with your local TaxAssist Accountant.

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