As exam results are released, HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) is reminding parents who receive Child Benefit and Child Tax Credits to inform them of their child’s educational status ahead of the deadline of 31st August, to avoid payments being stopped.
Angela MacDonald, Director General of Customer Services, said: “Results day is an exciting time for teenagers as they move on to the next step in their life, perhaps starting employment or deciding to continue with full-time education. Once parents or guardians know what their child has decided to do it’s really important they let us know as soon as possible, so they continue to get the right benefits and credits.”
More than 12 million people are already registered for the Personal Tax Account (PTA), the service that can be used to update both Child Benefit and Child Tax Credit information online. HMRC can also be informed of changes by phone or by letter.
Parents must notify HMRC if their children are aged 16+ and continuing in full-time education or are undertaking an apprenticeship. Claimants must report if they are leaving education or training - for example to start full-time work or due to a course ending - straight away, to prevent the build-up of overpayments, which will have to be paid back. Child Tax Credit claimants need to confirm their continued eligibility annually for 16, 18 and 19-year olds.
Reminding parents and guardians of the PTA service available MacDonald added: “Updating details can be done quickly and simply using the Personal Tax Account, which is available 24 hours-a-day, seven days-a-week. That means parents can let us know their child’s education status, after they’ve turned 16, at a time that suits them ahead of the 31st August deadline.”
People can continue to claim for teenagers aged between the ages of 16 and 19 years if they are in qualifying full-time education or training. Information about what counts as education and training can be found online at GOV.UK.
Failure to report a change could result in a penalty for claimants, or even prosecution for benefit fraud if they are found to have deliberately claimed money they were not entitled to.
If you have questions about your tax allowances or are worried about missing deadlines relating to them, TaxAssist Accountants are more than happy to help. Get in touch on 0800 0523 555 or use our handy online contact form.