Am I being unreasoanble to find this loophole in the benefit system unbelievable?

(79 Posts)
AllDirections Tue 23-Jul-13 20:37:26

I've just been told that if a person on Jobseekers looks after a friend's child (for no money, just expenses) a couple of days a week, then if they could have that child's child benefit transferred into their name this means that they can come off Jobseekers and claim income support instead, therefore taking away any requirement to work.

I can't believe that this is that case, otherwise lots of people would be doing it, wouldn't they? Apparently the job centre gave the person looking after the child this information.

PearlyWhites Tue 23-Jul-13 20:39:35

No of course that's not true

SmiteYouWithThunderbolts Tue 23-Jul-13 20:39:52

Why on earth would anyone transfer their child's CB into a friend's name?? I don't think it's legal to claim CB for a child you don't have full legal guardianship of.

BreasticlesNTesticles Tue 23-Jul-13 20:41:07

No the child needs to live with you, and I assume you would need to have parental responsibility.

5madthings Tue 23-Jul-13 20:41:44

That's rubbish you have to have residence of the child ie they have to live with you to claim child benefit, not just look after them for a few hours a week.

AnotherStitchInTime Tue 23-Jul-13 20:42:06

It is not so easy to transfer over child benefit. It took my friend months through the courts after his druggy ex disappeared leaving him with 4 kids to look after.

When I switched from the WOHP to the SAHP we tried to switch it over, they told us it was not an easy thing to sort out and gave us a form to get my NI paid.

Sounds like cobblers to me.

slapandpickle Tue 23-Jul-13 20:42:50

They'd have to have the child living there and if not a parent, have a residency / guardianship order. Proven via providing paperwork.

So in summary, bollocks.

AllDirections Tue 23-Jul-13 20:45:44

I thought it sounded really iffy but apparently it's all above board hmm

A few years ago you just had to say the child was living with you and the original holder of the CB had to say they had moved ( no paperwork apart from the claim form) IME

AllDirections Tue 23-Jul-13 20:46:50

Would it make a difference if the friend looked after the child 5 days a week, including 2 overnights?

Piddlepuddle Tue 23-Jul-13 20:47:27

Don't tell me, it is happening to a friend of a friend...

AllDirections Tue 23-Jul-13 20:49:47

Not exactly Piddlepuddle One of the people in this scenario has asked what I think. I think that if it's above board and allowed then fair enough but I think it could get messy.

DialsMavis Tue 23-Jul-13 20:51:32

Who on earth would sign over their DC's CB? hmm

YouTheCat Tue 23-Jul-13 20:51:44

It's a load of balls. And tbh most of the people who work in the jobcentres know bugger all about the benefits system.

Whothefuckfarted Tue 23-Jul-13 20:52:20

You have to have parental responsibility. So, you have to be the parent, adoptive parent, or legal guardian of the child.

'Tis bollocks, there is no such loophole.

UserError Tue 23-Jul-13 20:52:55

I used to work for HMRC. It's a load of bollocks.

hurricanewyn Tue 23-Jul-13 20:55:06

If the parent signs away Child Benefit to someone else, they can't claim Child Tax Credit or the childcare element of Working Tax Credit.

They'd be nuts to do that!

AllDirections Tue 23-Jul-13 20:55:26

Who on earth would sign over their DC's CB? hmm

I agree, I think it's almost like signing away the rights to your child!

And tbh most of the people who work in the jobcentres know bugger all about the benefits system.

I know, I do some partnership work with the job centre so it's possible that they've been given the wrong information.

I'll post again as I am now on laptop.

6yrs ago DD left home assisted by her grandmother, she lived with her for 2 weeks, just long enough to phone CB and tell them that my DD was living with her and she would like the CB for her, she filled In the form asap and I got a phone call asking if DD was living with me, I told them she had run away from home and that we were working on getting her back, that was irrelevant, she had gone and that was all they were concerned about, they cancelled my CB for her and transferred it to her grandmother. Grandmother then sent DD to live with her DDs boyfriend and his family and kept the CB for herself. I could only claim it back when DD moved back home.

There was no residency order, no parental responsibility, no legal guardianship, no paperwork. I hope that things have changed since then as it was too easy to take someones CB off them.

IneedAsockamnesty Tue 23-Jul-13 21:18:20

To claim child benefit the child has to be living with you.

But you do not have to be the parent of that child nor do you have to have a court order if CB is already in pay,ect to someone else you do not need to provide documents to prove the child's existence.

If my friends child came to live with me and I had her agreement CB could be transferred to me after a certain period, she would continue to be entitled to claim it for 6 weeks after the child leaves her home but the child would have to be resident with me for any benefit purposes resident goes on the amount of nights a child is with you not how many days and it does require the agreement of who ever currently receives the CB,if there is a despute regarding residency of the child there is a system to decide who has it.
Also if you claim and the child is not really resident with you then that's fraud

How ever the residency has to be intended to continue (or have already been perminant so you can't chop and change it every few weeks)

You can have the CB paid in to someone else's account but to get any dwp status with regard to it that person would need to be the named claimant.

However,

It would make no sence what so ever to do it unless the child was actually resident with someone else as every thing else with regard to the child is dependant on you reciving the cb so that's csa wtc ctc HB well everything, it would not be likely for anybody to really do it unless they were silly rich.

Also if someone did have a child come to live with them and carried on claiming Jsa that's fraud as is providing routine child care whilst claiming Jsa as you would not be free to job seek.

Given the circumstances you describe (2 over nights) no its not legal,but even if it was it makes no sense at all.

MalcolmTuckersMum Tue 23-Jul-13 21:22:32

OP - when you say "I've been told" and "Apparently........." - who exactly is doing the telling? Someone official? A friend's friend's cousin's best friend's ex boyfriend?

AllDirections Tue 23-Jul-13 21:30:13

Also if you claim and the child is not really resident with you then that's fraud

That's what I thought Sock but the people involved are adamant that it's fine to do this, hence me thinking that there must be a loophole.

The child definitely resides with the parent and not the minder. The child's family doesn't claim any other benefits except a very low amount of tax credits but I will let them know that they'll lose that if they go ahead with this plan.

The whole thing doesn't make sense to me but the 'minder' doesn't want to go to work and the parent wants free childcare so I guess I can see why they want to go ahead with it.

AllDirections Tue 23-Jul-13 21:34:04

Malcolm I was trying to keep the scenario non specific. The parent involved has given me this information. The 'minder' gave him the information and the job centre gave her the information. Hope that clears up how I've come to know about this.

The parent is a close friend and I'm concerned about this whole situation.

ihearsounds Tue 23-Jul-13 21:57:03

Plus having a child at home, no longer means a free unlimited pass to claim income support like it used to be.
Then signing from one benefit to another isn't all that simple because dwp will want evidence, which the parents will then be entering into fraudulent claim.
Then the issue of school and written evidence of where the child lives.
Never mind the parents loosing any tax credits.

How old is the child? If they are 5 then nobody could get income support for looking after them anyway. I can't see how they could possibly get IS, that is only for lone parents of under 5s. To claim IS this person would have to lie and say she had sole care of this child. So yeah, she could, but it would be fraud. With the child benefit she can also defraud tax credits and housing benefit. It's ridiculous.
With all due respect to any job centre employees on here - I have had plenty of dealings with job centre staff which indicate that they are severely under trained and simply don't know or understand a lot of the systems around benefits, even job seekers and IS.

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