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Don’t miss the tax credit deadline

If you’re on a low income or have children, tax credits can be worth thousands of pounds a year – and you’ve only until 31 July to renew your claim for this year.

Each new financial year anyone eligible for tax credits needs to renew their application by the July deadline. Miss it and payments will stop, meaning you’ll need to repay any payments you’ve got since April and reapply.

How to renew

Most people receiving tax credits will have been sent a renewal pack saying “reply now”, detailing what you need to do. It’s possible the pack will just say “check now”. If that’s the case, check everything is correct, and if so, your tax credits will be automatically renewed.

If you’ve not got a pack, call the tax credits helpline– though you won’t need to renew if you’ve first applied since 6 April 2017.

You can also manage your tax credits online on the GOV.UK website. 

How much will you get?

The amount you receive in Child Tax Credits and Working Tax Credits depends on a few factors, including household income, age of children and whether your children have a disability.

The awards are estimates, which are finalised after you’ve renewed your claim each year.

If your income goes up or down by £2,500 or more after you get your new award you have to tell the Tax Credit Office within 30 days of the change happening so they can re-calculate the payment.

If you don’t tell them of the changes and your income has gone up you might find you have been overpaid tax credits.

You will be asked to pay this money back either by reducing your future tax credits or by direct payments if your tax credits have stopped.

If your income has gone down you might be entitled to extra tax credits.

If you are asked to repay tax credits and will struggle to pay or don’t agree with the decision, speak to the Tax Credit Office as soon as you can.

What about Universal Credit?

Universal Credit (UC) is replacing tax credits so you won’t be able to claim both benefits. However, if you haven’t yet started or been moved to UC, you’ll still be able to renew and make new claims for tax credits as usual. 

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