Child Tax Credit

The Child Tax Credit is an important tax credit that may be worth as much as $1,000 per qualifying child depending on your family circumstances, you can claim child tax credits if you are responsible for at least one child or young person.

You may be able to claim Child Tax Credit if you’re responsible for children either:

  • aged 16 or under – you can claim up until 31 August after their 16th birthday
  • under 20 and in eligible education or training

You don’t need to be working to claim Child Tax Credit. Only one household can get Child Tax Credit for a child.


You will not be responsible for a child or young person who is:

  • in care; or
  • placed with others for fostering or adopting
  • serving certain custodial sentences or detained at Her Majesty’s pleasure
  • receiving tax credits for a child of their own
  • receiving contributory employment and support allowance for himself or herself or receiving working tax credit in their own right
  • receiving working tax credit in their own right (whether alone or on a joint claim)
  • living with a spouse, civil partner or partner and that person is not in full time education or approved training
  • living with a spouse, civil partner or partner and that person is the responsible person. This does not apply to people in receipt of CTC for a young person who is living with a partner before 1 September 2008

How do I claim Child Tax Credit?

To make a new claim for Tax Credits, you have to complete a claim form. You can ask for a claim form by contacting the HMRC Tax Credits by phone or online.

  • Telephone: 0345 300 3900
  • Textphone: 0345 300 3909
  • Online: Get a Tax Credit form page of the website

If you are already claiming Tax Credits and you need to change your claim. You can contact HMRC Tax Credits by phone or manage your Tax Credits online.

  • Telephone: 0345 300 3900
  • Textphone: 0345 300 3909
  • Online: Manage your Tax Credits page of the website

Remember that your Tax Credits claim has to be renewed every year by 31 July. If you do not renew your claim, your Tax Credit payments may stop and you may have to pay some Tax Credits back. Find out more about Tax Credit renewals on the How to Renew your Tax Credits page of the website.

Assisted Claims Service for foster carers

An assisted claims service for foster carers who wish to claim tax credits is available. Contact the Tax Credits Helpline for more information.

What documents will I need to claim Child Tax Credit?

When you make a claim for Child Tax Credit, you may be asked for:

  • Your national insurance number. If you do not have a national insurance number, send in the claim form anyway to avoid delays.
  • Proof of your identity, for example birth certificate, passport or driving licence.
  • Proof of your annual income, for example, P60, bank statements or pay slips.

If you qualify for an exception to the Two Child Limit, you may also be asked for other documents, for example:

  • Adoption certificate
  • Social worker’s declaration (for kinship care placements)
  • Support worker’s declaration (for children conceived as a result of rape)

Read more about how to qualify for an exception to the Two Child Limit on the website.

When will my Child Tax Credit claim begin?

Your Child Tax Credit claim will not start until your completed form has been received by HMRC. It is important that you get your completed form in as soon as possible so you don’t lose out.

Child Tax Credit can be backdated for up to 31 days if you would have been entitled to it earlier.  It does not matter why your claim is late. You can request a backdate by including a letter with your claim form.

How you’re paid

All benefits, pensions and allowances are paid into an account (a bank account, for example) of the person mainly responsible for the child.

You’re paid every week or every 4 weeks from the date of your claim up to the end of the tax year (5 April), unless your circumstances change.

What are the child tax credit changes 2017?

Before the changes a family could claim child tax credit – which is worth up to £2,780 per child each year – for every child in their household.

But this has now changed so only two children can be claimed for.

The Government are aiming to find £1.2bn by 2020 with this cutback as it tries to reduce the country’s national debt.

Yet limiting child tax credit payments to the first two children in a family will push 200,000 kids into poverty, a study claims.

Child Poverty Action Group said it was damaging to kids’ life chances.