To think HMRC would inform us about changes to tax credits

(152 Posts)
noisytoys Thu 11-Apr-13 09:11:12

I saw this morning from various sources (FB, a thread in money) that tax credits have been reduced for a lot of people with no notice. I checked my tax credits which went in today and lo and behold, £94 every 4 weeks reduction. There is no more I can cut. I can't afford to live now. I thought I would put this here for traffic because I fear millions of people will affected sad

RedHelenB Thu 11-Apr-13 09:32:11

Do you know why it's been reduced?

ohmentalnessisme Thu 11-Apr-13 09:38:09

Yes, we've just lost £65 per week with no notice shock but its because of changes to our circumstances that weren't taken into account last year. We knew our tax credits would be reduced but had no idea by how much so it was a bit of a shock when dh went to the bank to check yesterday and nothing had been paid in.

There will be stuff you can cut, people here are amazing at budgeting - post your budget and people will have a look

Is there a way you can increase your income - again folks here are brilliant at suggestions.

NameThatTuna Thu 11-Apr-13 09:43:15

Forgive me if i'm wrong as I know zilch about tax credits, but I just had a thought. Could this be because the personal tax allowance has increased this month?

lougle Thu 11-Apr-13 09:46:28

It can't be with no notice. They must have sent a revised award notice, surely?

Mrcrumpswife Thu 11-Apr-13 09:47:59

Ours dropped by 63.00 per week as from today and like ohmental it was due to change in circumstance from last year. We had no idea how much until this morning and its a massive shock considering the increase in wage last year was relatively small.

NameThatTuna Thu 11-Apr-13 09:49:01

I agree lougle - I don't claim tax credits but I thought everyone knew about the changes. I mentioned it to my mate the other week and she looked shocked. I've seen it mentioned on the new and read it in the papers.

NameThatTuna Thu 11-Apr-13 09:49:20

News

lougle Thu 11-Apr-13 09:52:16

To lose £63 per week in tax credits simply due to income increase, your income must have increased by £154 per week, because the withdrawl rate is 41%.

MrsPeeWee Thu 11-Apr-13 09:54:45

We usually get £41 tax credits per week, usually paid into our acc on a friday. I hope I don't wake up to a big change tomorrow. I'll die on the spot! confused

Mrcrumpswife Thu 11-Apr-13 09:54:59

I wish it had! I'm going to do battle on the phone line later and get a woolly answer about waiting until my annual renewal form before they will do anythinghmm

It seems to be the standard response.

messybedhead Thu 11-Apr-13 10:01:02

Mine was decreased by £60 yesterday and I was not informed that this was going to happen until I checked my account yesterday.

Like you, that money was what I relied on for weekly expenses such as food shopping and travel costs etc.

Like you, I am extremely worried about how I am going to feed my family.

But, I started a thread yesterday and some kind mumsnetters gave me some wonderful tips!

SherbetVodka Thu 11-Apr-13 10:01:09

Ours have been cut from today with no warning too. It came as a particular shock because I stopped work a few weeks ago and although I informed the tax credits office straight away about the change in circs, our child tax credits weren't changed at all (I'd expected them to go back to what they were before I was working as I'd only been in my job since after the last renewal).

Apparently my phoning to tell them about the change in circumstances after leaving work made no difference as they needed income figures for DH too in order to recalculate our award but they never told me this at the time angry

messybedhead Thu 11-Apr-13 10:01:31

60 per week that should have said.

Rainbowinthesky Thu 11-Apr-13 10:02:45

Surely people knew about this anyway as it's been all over the news for some time. I knew and I don't get them.

totallystumped Thu 11-Apr-13 10:04:23

noisytoys double check the (I think) last page of your most recent notice of award. it usually says what you get the week they issue it, what you'll get every week after that and what you will get every week from the start of the next year - all 3 amounts are often different. If what has gone into your account is different to the "next tax year amount" on the award notice get in touch with them for a reason why.

Doubtfuldaphne Thu 11-Apr-13 10:05:41

Mine went up as from yesterday. It always changes in April doesn't it? I think? According to your circumstances from previous tax year.

Koyangwuti Thu 11-Apr-13 10:09:56

By choice, my family do not claim any tax credits even though we easily qualify for them. We do not take any benefits of any kind in any sphere. We do this because we believe a government in debt is in no position to be subsidizing people's lifestyles; this is a moral stand based on simple, objective mathematics rather than the subjective political arguments that I think are arguable when and if there actually is money to help people.

Whether you agree with me on this or not, either way, I agree with LaurieFairyCake. There will be ways to budget and be okay. There are people in less privileged areas of the world who live off a few pounds a month and smile and stay in good spirits. I've never spoken with someone who was stressed about money and not found they had expenses which they have said are critically necessary, but yet I would consider such things a wishful luxury. My family is happy and healthy and we feel privileged even though our financial means are very limited. We have avoided money stress almost entirely simply by following the rule that you spend less than what you take in. When we all learn to follow this rule everyone will be in a position of greater security.

Mrcrumpswife Thu 11-Apr-13 10:12:04

Thats nice for you Koyangwuti hmm

YoniOneSugar Thu 11-Apr-13 10:14:46

Koya thanks for that tale of morality hmm but lots of people will be hit hard especially if they're not expecting it in advance.

NameThatTuna Thu 11-Apr-13 10:16:14

hmm

I don't claim tax credits Koyang - Through choice too - but I wouldn't be preaching that to people worried about money. You know nothing of the OP's circumstances. Your post isn't helpful is it?

lougle Thu 11-Apr-13 10:18:37

koyanwuti I'm sure that explains precisely why these families have had cuts hmm You make your choices, they claim what they are entitled to.

Nobody should find that their tax credits have gone down without warning. When you do your renewal, you state your income for the current year. The following year's tax credit award is based on that year's income.

So, if your circumstances are the same (ie. number of hours worked, family constitution) then the only change will be due to income.

This year there has been a £30 rise in allowance per child and a freeze on all other allowances.

To lose £94 every 4 weeks, your income must have risen £229 every 4 weeks, or £57 per week.

noisytoys Thu 11-Apr-13 10:19:01

We have cut everything we can. We already have a budget of £30 a week to feed 4. We already live in a 1 bed flat. We already have 2 changes of clothes and 1 pair of shoes each. There is nothing more to cut

Koyangwuti Thu 11-Apr-13 10:21:30

The posts that I do not think are helpful are the ones that complain and encourage a person to feel like a victim. There is another way. What I said was to encourage personal empowerment. I know nothing of the OP's circumstances? I know what the OP said. The OP is getting less money in tax credits and is stressed. To that I responded. Nor do I think it is out of place to do so.

JambalayaCodfishPie Thu 11-Apr-13 10:21:45

My payment today was £4.00 less than normal. Obviously not a shock on the scale that other MNers have received, but I have had no SPECIFIC information with regards to this, no notification letter or anything.

HousewifeFromHeaven Thu 11-Apr-13 10:21:54

messy link to your thread please?

NameThatTuna Thu 11-Apr-13 10:24:20

The posts that I do not think are helpful are the ones that complain and encourage a person to feel like a victim.

Nope, don't see that anywhere on this thread.

lougle Thu 11-Apr-13 10:25:12

"Nor do I think it is out of place to do so."

Actually, it is out of place. The title was 'HMRC should have informed us' not 'should we be claiming tax credits' hmm

Dahlen Thu 11-Apr-13 10:25:21

There are people out there who don't smoke, don't drink, don't go out ever, cook from scratch or a minimal budget (feeding a family of three on £120 per month, including household goods such as washing powder), don't buy new little luxuries (e.g. CDs or makeup) or clothes (instead getting clothes from charity shops or ebay). They don't have any savings or savings policies, all their insurances are essential (e.g. car, house), utilities are already on the most competitive tariffs. They are in the minimum sized, cheapest housing they could possibly get for their needs (in my case my mortgage was significantly less than what I would have paid for an equivalent rental property in the worst area in my locality).

I was one of those people. There simply wasn't any way to further cut my budget. I once thought perhaps it was me, so I got professional advice only to be told that they were amazed I hadn't got myself into debt because my income simply wasn't adequate.

Telling people they are just budgeting ineffectively is incredibly offensive and ivory towerish.

In my case it was crippling childcare costs that caused the problem. In other people's cases it will be mortgage/rent or commuting costs. It may be possible to reduce these, but only with significant outlay to set up (e.g. moving costs) - an outlay that most people simply cannot lay their hands on if things are already that tight.

MooMooSkit Thu 11-Apr-13 10:25:29

Mine went up 10 pounds yesterday when I checked my bank :S No idea why, had no letters, nothing. Think I might call as I don't want them to overpay me or anything!

Koyangwuti Thu 11-Apr-13 10:27:28

The telling information is never what is listed when a person explains how little they spend on X or Y. It is always in the details they leave out. It is about what a person actually is spending money on. If we want to go through the nitty gritty, then lets do it. State the total amount of money incoming, and the sources of it. Then people can point out other means of obtaining money with which you either may not be aware, or simply may not be interested in, as well as take the total money available and show how it can be budgeted effectively.

lougle Thu 11-Apr-13 10:28:01

MooMoo, check your Tax Credits award that you received in June/July 2012. On the very last page, it will tell you your 'future payments' from April 2013. It should show the increase there.

YouTheCat Thu 11-Apr-13 10:29:26

Koy, it is none of your business how someone else chooses to budget. Stop trying to derail the thread.

lougle Thu 11-Apr-13 10:30:26

Or, Koyangwuti, people could mind their own business, stick to the subject, and if posters from this thread want that sort of advice, they can start threads in less volatile sections, where genuinely helpful people can offer sincere advice.

MooMooSkit Thu 11-Apr-13 10:31:18

Thanks will have to try dig it out! Hope it's not a mistake!

Dahlen Thu 11-Apr-13 10:32:23

Yes you're right Koyangwuti. In my case it was childcare. I'd have been able to save for a holiday each year if I wasn't paying childcare costs. I don't consider that 'inessential'.

I am not going to list my income and outgoings because it's time-consuming, tedious, and TBH I'm of the opinion that if you think you know better than a professional adviser you are not someone that it would be worth debating with.

NameThatTuna Thu 11-Apr-13 10:33:20

Or, Koyangwuti, people could mind their own business, stick to the subject, and if posters from this thread want that sort of advice, they can start threads in less volatile sections, where genuinely helpful people can offer sincere advice.

this Koyang

Dahlen Thu 11-Apr-13 10:33:20

Anyway back to the point, HMRC normally inform you of changes, but IME it is often after you've noticed a change in your payments. hmm

MrsPeeWee Thu 11-Apr-13 10:33:25

Koyanwuti.

Why ever you felt the need to write that little moral statement is beyond me. Great, you don't claim tax credits, good for you hmm but I assure you, many people, including myself rely on them to get us through the week - and the fact that people are having them cut without notification is a huge strain.

Please, go and make your own thread if you want to preach about not morally accepting entitled benefits, because it certainly isn't helpful on this thread.

Koyangwuti Thu 11-Apr-13 10:35:37

The thread was started with a post from someone concerned they did not have enough money because they did not see the same amount of tax credit previously. I have responded inside that field, i.e., being able to have enough money and the subject of tax credits. Okay, so you do not like what I think on the matter. So now you say it does not belong and is not valid. I see how this works. Nobody wants to hear it if it sounds hard. Fine, just whine and moan and see how that works for you. I'll leave you to that then. Enjoy.

lougle Thu 11-Apr-13 10:35:59

We get as much in Tax Credits as we get from DH's wage. I'm not too proud to claim it.

YouTheCat Thu 11-Apr-13 10:36:54

You have no idea how much the OP's mortgage/rent, bills or any other essential outgoings are. The OP did not ask whether she should claim or how to budget.

lougle Thu 11-Apr-13 10:37:22

No, you didn't, Koyangwuti, you told the OP that you don't even claim them, despite being eligible, you feel it's immoral.

elliejjtiny Thu 11-Apr-13 10:39:26

We've lost £40 a week, although we did get a letter and DH's salary has increased this year so it wasn't unexpected. We will be ok but when DS2's disabled premium gets reduced we will struggle.

glossyflower Thu 11-Apr-13 10:40:23

Whilst I don't agree that it's acceptable for people to not be informed of changes to their benefits I do agree with what koya is saying.

I have never needed to claim any benefits, however I have struggled in the past couple of years with increases in utilities, food, transport costs so its not just people that claim that have suffered we just have to make the most of what we have got.

koya is not preaching just trying to explain we can empower ourselves.

If you've only 30 a week to feed all of you then something IS wrong - you are likely paying for something you don't need to or you're not claiming something you need.

The last time I saw a thread like this (where there were arguments) the OP was paying over 200 quid in previous credit card debt - and quite simply she couldn't afford it - unfortunately she thought she HAD to pay it. People on low incomes can not afford that debt and the worst thing that could happen is that a county court judgement would determine that you had to pay a fiver a month.

Or the family who were paying a massive amount of child support because the EX wouldn't let them see the child.

There is usually a reason and being trapped in debt can make you terrified and blinkered - it's a horrible place to be.

Foxeym Thu 11-Apr-13 10:50:08

The only difference in circumstances for me is that my husband walked out last year but as I was the only earner it didn't make any difference financially but I went into my bank account this week and my tax credits have been dropped by £48 week??? I had no idea??

lougle Thu 11-Apr-13 10:51:10

Very true, Laurie, and that's the sort of advice the OP and others on this thread may want to get at some point. It's not the same thing as being told that they are 'obviously not budgeting well'.

lougle Thu 11-Apr-13 10:53:05

Foxyem, did you have a higher income last year than the previous year?

PearlyWhites Thu 11-Apr-13 10:56:11

Koyangwuti : do you have any idea how self righteous your post was. If you choose not to claim tax credits that's fine but for many people tax credits are necessary to enable people to feed and clothe their children.
So have a biscuit on me.

Viviennemary Thu 11-Apr-13 10:58:38

Most people will by my reckoning only get about £30 a month more with the new personal allowance. I don't claim tax credits. Why are they being cut. Is it because of the new £500 a week benefit cap.

Mrcrumpswife Thu 11-Apr-13 11:00:31

I didnt realise there was a new personal allowance. Does that mean we should see some more money on the wage slip at the end of the month to compensate for the drop in TC?

Szeli Thu 11-Apr-13 11:04:24

foxy your drop is likely the second adult award; you won't be entitled to it if he no longer lives with you - but they should have told you x

ophelia275 Thu 11-Apr-13 11:05:52

I read somewhere that the longterm plan is to reduce tax credits and raise the income tax threshold so that low paid workers keep more of their money rather than having to pay tax and then claim it back through tax credits.

lougle Thu 11-Apr-13 11:08:46

Tax credits aren't a 'tax refund'. Someone earning over £10000 per year will benefit from the rise in personal allowance. Those Tax Credits claimants who earn less than £10000 may not get a benefit from it at all, depending on their wage.

Tax Credits are calculated from Gross earnings anyway, so how much you get after tax is irrelevant for their tax credit award.

lougle Thu 11-Apr-13 11:11:06

Szeli there is no second adult award in tax credits. The allowance for couples and single parents is exactly the same, £1970 this year, £20 up on last year. Table here showing changes in tax credit elements

Meglet Thu 11-Apr-13 11:15:19

Mine go in on a friday so I hope I don't get a nasty shock tomorrow as I want to pay the nursery bill and money is already tight.

I have to say that the news has been covering bedroom tax, DLA and council tax changes (none of which affect me) but I've not seen any reports on changes to tax credits. I got the impression they weren't tinkering with them.

lougle Thu 11-Apr-13 11:17:27

They aren't, Meglet. There's a freeze on some elements, and a slight increase in others. There are no reductions that I can see from that table.

lougle Thu 11-Apr-13 11:17:44

Except for the disregard, of course.

dizzyhoneybee Thu 11-Apr-13 11:23:11

Well all I can say is that you are lucky to have the choice then Koyangwuti

Some people don't have that "luxury" and are dependant on tax credits.

LillethTheCat Thu 11-Apr-13 11:23:44

Im worried about tomorrow too as I get my TCs on a Friday. Ive heard others have been cut and I have no idea about mine. I did look on entitled to and got that there was no change (or at least not much) so Im not sure. I did look for a letter but there was no letter in the cupboard where I put these sort of things.

well tomorrow I will know.

carriedawayannie Thu 11-Apr-13 11:24:59

I don't understand.

I've read quite a lot of the changes and have heard nothing about changes.

dizzyhoneybee Thu 11-Apr-13 11:27:14

So looking at the pdf (thank you to the person who posted it), unless our circumstances have changed then there should be no change to our tax credits?

hm32 Thu 11-Apr-13 11:28:10

For those who are worried and can't cut any more, could you earn more in an ad hoc odd job way? Could you ask around if anyone needs any cleaning doing? Or ironing? Could you walk dogs for elderly neighbours? I've been doing some of this sort of thing lately to top up our income as we have had a lot of unexpected expenses (vet bills, appliances breaking, car repairs etc). It has been a massive help and has kept us in the black so to speak!

ChocHobNob Thu 11-Apr-13 11:31:58

Changes in tax credits at this time of the year are detailed on the previous year's tax credit letter. They normally change at the beginning of April to try and stop you being overpaid. In my letter last year it says we will receive £xx every 4 weeks and then from 4th April we will receive £xx a week (which is less).

carriedawayannie Thu 11-Apr-13 11:33:04

What is the the disregard? I never understand that term when it is used

Viviennemary Thu 11-Apr-13 11:33:54

Mrcrumpswife, the tax allowance is going up by approximately 1,300. So this is probably less than £30 around £22 more in your pay if you are a basic rate tax payer. Which isn't exactly a lifestyle change! I'm still not quite sure why tax credits are being cut. I've not seen much about this on the news.

Mrcrumpswife Thu 11-Apr-13 11:35:22

Did you have to set up as self employed hm32 because thats whats put me off doing it and is it hard to set yourself up as a mini business?
I wouldnt dare do cash in hand as we live in a small community who do love a gossip and of course its morally wronggrin

Vickibee Thu 11-Apr-13 11:41:28

Thedisregard has been reduced to 5000 this tax year so this makes it reaally hard to budget ESP if you are SE

lougle Thu 11-Apr-13 11:42:30

hm32, some great ideas there. Just remember that any income you get in that way is also taxable and should be declared on your tax credits renewal forms, to stay within the law.

For every £10 you earn, £4.10 will be deducted from your tax credit award. If you are within taxable earnings, £2 will be deducted for income tax, and £1.20 for National Insurance. That means that you will keep £2.70.

If you are eligible for housing benefit, then that £10 increase of income will result in a loss of £1.76 from your award. Similarly, if you receive council tax reduction (what was council tax benefit) and your local authority have kept the 20% of net earnings calculation, you will lose £0.54 from your council tax award.

Your overall gain from £10 increase in income, should you be in receipt of tax credits, housing benefit and council tax benefit, if you stick to the rules and declare your earnings, will be £0.40 sad

hm32 Thu 11-Apr-13 11:45:17

lougle I had no idea there was so little point working if you are on benefits! We are not eligible to claim anything, so just lose the 20% income tax etc which doesn't make it too bad tbh.

Mrcrumpswife Thu 11-Apr-13 11:46:49

Oh dear, by the time i factor in any childcare, thats a no go area then.

lougle Thu 11-Apr-13 11:47:11

carriedaway the 'disregard' is the amount of increase in earnings that they will ignore when calculating your tax credits.

If you earn £10000, your tax credits will be based on that.

If you get a payrise, taking your pay up to £12000, HMRC will ignore that payrise for the first year, and calculate the tax credits as if you were still earning £10000.

The following year, they would use the £12000 income to calculate the tax credits.

They will disregard each year, so if you then got a payrise to £15000, you'd get one year grace and have your tax credits calculated as if you earn £12000, then the following year, they'd calculate on the £15000, and so on.

It used to be £10000 disregard, but they've reduced it to £5000.

carriedawayannie Thu 11-Apr-13 11:48:19

Just googled disregard and it still makes little sense.

Is this it:

Income for 2011-2012 was £2000.
Income for 2012 - 2013 21000.

Because the increase is less than £5000, it is disregarded?

This disregard used to be £25,000. Then £10,000. Now £5,000.

Is that right?

catloony Thu 11-Apr-13 11:49:19

HMRC estimate what your 2012/13 was using a cost of living rise, you complete the renewal form with the actual figures in approx June time using your P60's with the actual figure.

In the mean time though you can contact Tax Credits with an estimation of what it is likely to be so that you avoid under or over payements.

Tax credits had estimated that I had had a pay rise in line with cost of living as many people do, however in reality I unfortunately did not get a pay rise so the figure was wrong, I have rang them with an estimation of what my salary was last year, I had my earnings up to 31 March on my last pay slip and then added another weeks wages on to that, so they are recalculating it.

The salary figure they were going use is on the last letter sent regarding your award along with the likely April 2013 payments.

There were also very few of the tax credit elements that were uprated this year so many of the figures to calculate have remained the same. Some of the elements that were uprated were only £20 for the couple and lone parent element, £65 for disabled worker element, for example. There was a couple of others.

This means that anyone who did receive a pay rise may well get less.

carriedawayannie Thu 11-Apr-13 11:49:59

X posts lougle. That makes perfect sense now. Thank you smile

lougle Thu 11-Apr-13 11:51:20

hm32, DH has just taken on an extra 5 hours per week at his work. The fact that it pushes his hours up to 30 hours per week gains us £790 per year. However, by the time you calculate the reduction in other benefits, the net increase in wages for those 5 hours is £3.20 in total sad

500internalerror Thu 11-Apr-13 11:55:43

Last April our child tax credits were completely stopped & we owed them an amount, which they specified were not to be paid back till this April. I'm assuming they willl actually contact me? Just wondering now, if they havent paid me all year, will I be 'on a back burner' & have to contact them? I was hoping I might get some money again - enough to clear the debt - as my working hrs changed this year.

Mrcrumpswife Thu 11-Apr-13 11:56:53

We dont get any housing benefit or C Tax benefit even though it totals over 50% of our earnt monthly income. Do tax credits inform Housing benefit office or would i need to apply to see if we are eligible?

MrsPeeWee Thu 11-Apr-13 12:10:49

My DH has had a £2000 payrise since the last tax year - last April. How will they know this until we all receive our renewal packs in July? Or am I being naive?

mumofweeboys Thu 11-Apr-13 12:12:16

http://www.mumsnet.com/jobs/changes-to-tax-credits

There is a bit on mumnet about chnages in allowance from april 2013

PearlyWhites Thu 11-Apr-13 12:20:00

Mrcrumpswife you have to apply for hb or ct reduction

messybedhead Thu 11-Apr-13 12:36:37

Mrcrumpswife have you looked at the calculator on the entitled to website? It will give you an idea about how much you may be entitled to.

Mrcrumpswife Thu 11-Apr-13 12:38:01

I'm off to have a google. Thankyou

CwtchesAndCuddles Thu 11-Apr-13 12:50:00

Our circumstances haven't changed at all. When we renewed our claim last year and had all the paperwork through afterwards I noticed that our provisional award for 2013/2014 was less per week by aprx £15
(£800 per year)

These cuts in tax credit were announced a long time ago and I think that has caught lots of people out

loopylou6 Thu 11-Apr-13 13:13:10

Yup, we've lost £40 a week

JakeBullet Thu 11-Apr-13 13:40:09

Interesting thread, I wont know until the end of the month when it's due in if I lose anything. It's a sad fact that these cuts are attacking the working poor as well as the non working poor. It's scary how many people do not realise this.sad

Mrcrumpswife Thu 11-Apr-13 13:51:27

I've done my calculation and it looks like the TC i am being paid is correct which is good in one way because i dread an overpayment.

I am also not entitled to HB or CTB but even more concerning is that our council appears to take child maintenance into account now which i hadnt noticed before.

Its a shame EX doesnt pay any maintenancehmm

x2boys Thu 11-Apr-13 13:57:49

when my ctc was stopped completley i got about six letter,s each to both myself and dh it was only about £40/ month so no biggie are you sure you have ent been informed?

picnicbasketcase Thu 11-Apr-13 13:58:35

Is there any way of finding this out or do you just wait til you get the next payment? Mine goes in next Thurs and now I'm rather nervous. DH's wages pay the mortgage and bills, the TC pays for the food all month, if it goes down as dramatically as it has for some of you, I've no idea what I'll do.

CwtchesAndCuddles Thu 11-Apr-13 14:34:21

Posted upthread to say ours has gone down by aprox £15 per week but as the tax allowance has increased I think the money we gain from that will be a few pounds more than the tax credit we lose.

The net effect is a small gain for us overall.

Less tax credit but pay less in tax.

JambalayaCodfishPie Thu 11-Apr-13 15:09:07

Found last years paperwork - it does say it would go down from the 11th April 2013. And a little bit again from the 18th.

Groovee Thu 11-Apr-13 15:21:20

We're still recovering from dh being made redundant last year. We ended up living on credit cards because his job seekers took over 8 weeks to get paid and we had nothing. Tax credits apparently should have helped us out but they kept saying it went on the previous year's salaries hmm.

I remember when I did get tax credits, we had a change in April and it was usually documemented on the payment thing they sent you out once you renewed.

I read this earlier and panicked so we phoned them to ask the amount that would be paid next week. Payment up by £4 per week. confused

I am in NI though so might be different.

MrsPeeWee Fri 12-Apr-13 01:23:05

Just checked my bank - our tax credits have gone down by approx £15, also. =(

Getting £41 felt much better than £25. confused

Never mind. Here I come budgeting threads grin

HarrietSchulenberg Fri 12-Apr-13 01:57:25

How lovely of Koya to deliver those encouraging sermons of morality. And what a joy it must be to have the choice of whether to claim tax credits or not.
My essential household outgoings (mortgage, council tax, gas, electric and necesssary insurances) come to over £900 per month. Then there's food, clothes, shoes, diesel to get to and from work and all the other stuff that goes with having 3 children. I have a 3-bed mid-terrace in a pretty cheap rural area.
I cook from scratch and I can feed my family well on a shoestring. I have spent this winter being fucking cold as I daren't turn the heating on for more than an hour or two a day, and I have no heat downstairs anyway save for the cooker, because I can't afford to get the fucking gas fire fixed.
My salary is £750. Without tax credits we couldn't make ends meet. We'd lose our tiny house and would be forced into social housing, which is a) in very short supply, and b) more expensive to the government than it is to keep us here.
So Koya keep your smug sermons to yourself as you really sound like a twat.

Isabeller Fri 12-Apr-13 02:06:46

OP, YABU to expect to be informed because the whole system is falling apart/being dismantled. We're on the other side of the looking glass now.

Sorry to be so negative, feel quite grim about the mess on it's way.

Really hope you find a way to cope.

BTW IMO choosing to live simply for ethical/religious reasons is not the same thing as having your income cut overnight.

80sMum Fri 12-Apr-13 02:39:16

lougle you summed up nicely all that's wrong with the benefits system. The fact that it simply isn't worth people's while trying to earn a bit more because it all gets clawed back again discourages independence and creates a 'benefits trap' for people.
There has to be real incentive for people to try to better their situations. The present system is demoralising and demeaning and turns adults into 'children' dependent on the 'mother state' for money. There must be a better way. I wish I could think of one.

NMW should be enough to cover

Average rent
Council Tax
Electric
Heating
Reasonable food for a family of 4
Reasonable clothes for a family of 4

Aswell as that, rents should be capped/controlled. Nonsense like the TV Licence should be scrapped. Electric and fuel companies should be fined if they make over a certain % in profits. Tax loopholes shold be closed so that money cannot be sent to tax havens etc. If you work in this country the money should stay in this country.

Oh and workfare should be abolished.

It might all be pie in the sky, and there might be a million reasons why thosw things cannot happen. But I dont think a single one of them is unreasonable to expect.

PariahHairy Fri 12-Apr-13 05:28:36

Wannabee, that might impact on profits, can't have that now, profits are king, as long as Tesco is making a millionty billion each year and the stock market is healthy, then you must know that the economy is fine.

Oh I know. A key thing I left out is

The government should be responsible and honest. Instead of a bunch of self centred, greedy bastards.

PariahHairy Fri 12-Apr-13 05:33:09

Our tax credits appear to be the same. I used to stress about debts etc, now I just ignore.

They have even stopped hassling us, lets face it if countries can be in so much debt, my personal tally is nothing.

Cornflaketart Fri 12-Apr-13 06:21:54

After reading this thread, I just checked my bank, tax credit has gone down by £100 a week shock

I don't know why. No letter about it.

I currently get DLA for neuro disorder.
My three teenagers still have Autism, wink and still get DLA.
Nothing at all has changed. Except we will be getting 5k less per year.

lougle Fri 12-Apr-13 07:58:49

I checked my account with trepidation, but mine has gone up slightly and matches my award letter from last year's renewal.

Does anyone feel comfortable to post their circumstances, so we can see if there is a pattern? I'll start:

couple with 3 children, one 'severely disabled' by HMRC definition.
DH earns approx £10k, I get carers allowance of £3k. combined tax credits around £270 per week.

Quick note -usual MN rules notwithstanding, thus is not an invitation for posters who disagree with tax credits to come along and have a pop.

AnitaManeater Fri 12-Apr-13 07:59:17

You need to check the last award notice you received from tax credits. On the final page of all awards it states the amount that you will receive from the start of the financial year (6th April). The payments from 6th April until you submit your tax credits renewal form are all provisional.

It's only going to get worse when Universal Credit comes in.

nkf Fri 12-Apr-13 08:07:39

They should tell you in advance. It's not fair otherwise.

BlackAffronted Fri 12-Apr-13 08:10:26

Mine have gone up £2 a week.

lougle Fri 12-Apr-13 08:18:49

It doesn't make sense. The HMRC site confirms the information in the link I posted upthread. There is no cut in tax credits this year, apart from a lowered disregard to £5000 from £10000, and a modest increase in some other elements. The only thing that would change the award is a change in income/circumstance.

YesIamYourSisterInLaw Fri 12-Apr-13 08:33:41

My situations similar to foxys and I have lost around £32 a week with no warning.

Svrider Fri 12-Apr-13 08:42:25

YANBU
We not only have had our tax credits stopped, we've even got to pay some back for some reason hmm
Our income has been the same for 4.5 years
We have informed HMRC every time we have had any changes, but no we still owe them money angry
Sorry you are in this position

Do you think they are reverting to UC rates now so that when UC does come in that "discretionary" payment that was promised to ensure no one was worse off is actually worth nothing?

Or should I get my tinfoil out?

lougle Fri 12-Apr-13 09:59:27

Can't be that, wannabe, because the rates are set in legislation. They can't change it without telling you. Even the council has had to change my council tax to 9 installments because they missed the deadline two week notice period for a variation.

Do you know when the UC rates are being published?

Isnt one area already trialing it? Surely rates have been set?

But yes, I see what you mean. Still dont get why some people are losing so much though.

Groovee Fri 12-Apr-13 11:16:00

If I recall correctly, when you renew, you normally get a lump sum of a higher payment, then a weekly/monthly payment until March, then in April it goes down until you renew again.

minicreamegg Fri 12-Apr-13 11:37:57

Does anyone know when Universal Credit starts for everyone, will we need to sign-on every 2 weeks to receive tax credits ? Universal Credit is really confusing me hmm

Szeli Fri 12-Apr-13 11:51:12

lougle as the sole earner I get a second adult award for my partner so I assumed foxy's would be the same. I think it's because when I'm at work he's not entitled to jsa so we get an extra lump from that.

That's what it's listed as on my awards letter anyways xx

mrsscoob Fri 12-Apr-13 11:59:06

Do you have an overpayment you are paying back? I called last week to report a minor change in circumstances and then I noticed my tax credits payments had gone down. When I rang I was told it was not to do with my change in circumstances it was because they had decided that I must start paying back more of an overpayment I had from a previous award. I had no letter or any idea that this was going to happen. The girl I spoke to on the phone said that with universal credit coming in next year they are trying to get as much of the money owed through over payments back in as possible before it starts. Hence why my repayment was changed.

lougle Fri 12-Apr-13 14:42:22

[[ http://www.welfarereform.net/universal-credit-rates-20132014/ link here to universal credit rates]] not sure how accurate they are?

Moodykat Fri 12-Apr-13 22:14:41

My tax credits have gone down £67 a week apparently because I started work last year so my 2012/2013 income was more than 2011/2012. They knew that would be the case. I have always kept them fully informed. Now it seems I must stop work for a year to get more again. After childcare I would be better off staying at home. What is the point?! Like others, I had no warning of this happening. This post probably barely makes sense but I am so cross!

M0naLisa Fri 12-Apr-13 22:18:13

My child tax stays the same but we have just updated employment details and WTC is a lot lower to what it used to be. We used to get near enough to £80per week in WTC and now we get just over £50 per week.

lougle Fri 12-Apr-13 22:22:37

£80 per week WTC is high, M0naLisa. DH gets £30 per week and we have 3 children, one disabled and an income of £13k.

LooseyMy Fri 12-Apr-13 22:25:11

The next year's payments are on the bottom of your award letter. Read your paperwork properly.

dribbleface Fri 12-Apr-13 22:28:52

The whole system is so confusing, I thought mine would stop this year, called to confirm, they paid a one off and they are continuing. May be the disregard thing.

I consider myself to be reasonably intelligent but cannot make head nor tail of it.

Moodykat Fri 12-Apr-13 22:29:11

Thanks Loosey. <firmly back in place>
I know it is on there. However I have misplaced it and am sure that actually it didn't show this much of a reduction as I would've panicked about it at the time.
But again, thanks.

Darkesteyes Fri 12-Apr-13 22:40:29

wannaBe i saw in my twitter feed this afternoon that MP Jo Swinson is calling for interns to be paid the minimum wage so she ended up getting tweets asking why cant it be the same for workfare.

Bloody too right.

catloony Sat 13-Apr-13 00:03:45

"" Message poster lougle Fri 12-Apr-13 08:18:49
It doesn't make sense. The HMRC site confirms the information in the link I posted upthread. There is no cut in tax credits this year, apart from a lowered disregard to £5000 from £10000, and a modest increase in some other elements. The only thing that would change the award is a change in income/circumstance.""

HMRC make an assumption in line with cost of living that everyone gets a pay rise, this is how they estimate the next years award as per your last award letter, on that letter it states the estimated income.

This year there were very few uprated elements of Tax Credits. These are the parts of calculating the award. Ignore at this stage anything to do with disregards. The basic element of tax credits had no uprating this year, they have now assumed you have had an estimated pay rise (this is gross so nothing to do with tax allowance going up) so the two figures are now moved closer to each other making the award less.

So for example

Basic working tax credit element 2011/12 - £1920(actual)
Minus
Income exact from renewal 2011/12 - £7000 (example for this)

Then next year they assume a pay rise

Basic working tax credit element 2012/13 - £1920 (still actual as no uprating)
Minus
Income estimated by HMRC until renewal 2012/13 - £7500 (as above still an example)

As you can see the calculation has changed so therefore you are going to lose money as there is difference in the calculation now when they take into account the 41% withdrawal.

As soon as everyone gets their P60 they can ring Tax Credits and tell them of a likely income, you do not have to wait for the renwal pack. you can give an estimation without the P60 if you know their esimation is way out but try to calculate it correctly.

The disregard mentioned as above dropping from £10,000 to £5,000 only matters to pay rises, so it only applies if your income from 2011/12 to 2012/13 has risen by over £5,000 per year.

i've tried to explain tax credit as best as I can as it is very complex, there are many elements to it that are not mentioned here and many did not get uprated this year and the elements that did were small.

I hope this makes sense, I work in the benefits area so can help hopefully but not exclusively in tax credits

lougle Sat 13-Apr-13 00:13:29

catloony I understand that perfectly, thank you. However, some posters have had their tax credits drop by £100 per week which would mean that they have had an income increase of £244 per week!

Nobody is going to get a standard payrise of £244 per week.

catloony Sat 13-Apr-13 00:27:26

It's hard to say why drops like that happen without seeing exact figures, but sometimes it can be confusing as for example one partner was not in paid employment as staying at home the previous year, at a different job with a different salary.

The bit that can be confusing is it is on the previous years income, so with out knowing those posters exact circumstances over the past couple of years it is impossible to say exactly why not what is now

lougle Sat 13-Apr-13 08:25:59

Of course, but if posters say their circumstances haven't changed, then the confusion is understandable.

MP Jo Swinson is calling for interns to be paid the minimum wage so she ended up getting tweets asking why cant it be the same for workfare.

Difference is, interns are notoriously rich kids (who else can work for free??) so I fear that the link between interns and workfare will be ignored, after all, the poor are just shit people right? The undeserving.

triplets Sun 19-May-13 23:58:36

Our income is fixed as we live on dh`s pensions, our tax credit was cut by £30 last month and £40 this month. We rely on every penny with three 15 yr olds and my dh has cancer sad

notbotheredreally Mon 20-May-13 00:02:21

i thought everyone got a renewal pack in april /may and it had to be filled in by july ?

siezethenight Mon 20-May-13 07:45:06

They did this to me also - I am down 240.00 a month. That is because of one change that I knew of, my son reaching 20 - fair enough. But the reason for the rest, after much calling them up to find out was given as, changes in personal circumstances last year. I asked, what changes? They said they would send me out a new renewal form in due course and I had to fill it in. I said, yes, I know that, I am asking what changes for the last year? They said your son is 20, do you really expect the state to pay for him indefinitely? Bit gobsmacked at that - never mentioned my son at all to the woman beyond saying, that bit I understood...
I asked to speak to another operative because I can't take that sort of c**p over a phone... And got cut off. Had to go through the whole call them up thing again and got told I had to fill out the renewal when it arrived - no explanation given for the loss of the rest of the money beyond change of personal circumstances last year.
No notice at all of this - just my payment went into bank down the money.

This was over a month ago and piddled me off no end. It drove me to apply to college, go back and re-train for a better paid job in 18 months time. Got to work still as well but I am going to knock myself out over the next 18 months working and studying so I can get myself out of this mess. I do not trust the Government at all. They have no idea about the reality of life and are just cutting everything they can think of except their own salaries. They have been wa**ing themselves off ever since they arrived in power... I have massive sympathies for anybody that works in DWP and Tax Credits because they have got to be getting slammed from the public generally because of all the cuts and changes coming in. I even forgive that woman who made the quip over my son as she is possibly just getting abused over the phone all the time.
Sorry - long berating post for a Monday morning.

Lovelygoldboots Mon 20-May-13 07:53:41

Shouldnt the renewal pack have come through by now? I have not received anything.

jacks365 Mon 20-May-13 08:04:13

Sieze do you have other children that you also claim for?

It may be that the interim amount currently being paid assumes a pay rise. As soon as you get your figures for last year just ring up and do the renewal over the phone.

I got my pack to discover they'd removed the wrong child dd1 had gone to uni but they took dd2 off instead. Not happy about that.

manticlimactic Mon 20-May-13 08:08:21

Lovelygoldboots I only got mine on Friday so they are on their way.

Lovelygoldboots Mon 20-May-13 08:29:14

Thanks manic

Mumdanielle Fri 11-Apr-14 09:58:00

Ours have been cut by £167 a month, our circumstances remain the same, i called them last night to be told the renewal packs are being sent out between April and June so until they recieved the pack back our tax credits will remain lowered, I'm fuming as its also half term and I don't get paid as I only work term time

Koy Out of curiosity how much money do you and your partner take home a month?

Wantsunshine Fri 11-Apr-14 12:36:21

I didn't know tax credit awards were so high. There are some really high figures of what people get per week unless it maybe includes child benefit as well. Wages really do need to increase so they are not supported by tax credits

This is a zombie thread people!

Tax credits take into account the number of children you have, so the more kids you have the more money you get. A couple with 4 kids with a household income of about £12k will get almost £13k in tax credits to top them up.

deakymom Fri 11-Apr-14 14:41:57

you can renew on the phone you dont need the pack x

McPie Fri 11-Apr-14 15:02:08

The last page of your latest final awards notice tells you what your payments will be up to the end of the tax year and what it will be at the start of the new tax year. This will change when you give them your final income for 2013/14 but you have to wait for your pack, any underpayment will be credited to your account in a separate payment and any overpayment will be deducted from your new award! Hunt out your paperwork it is all there in black and white, you only need to phone then if the amount you are now getting is less than what's on your latest award notice.

Katinkia Fri 11-Apr-14 15:57:19

Mine has gone up ten pounds to 331 and change a week.

Samu2 Fri 11-Apr-14 16:07:33

I noticed I had £20 more today but didn't know why.

Samu2 Fri 11-Apr-14 16:13:50

I have only been on WTC/CT for a month.

While I am here, I double checked my figures and they estimated my income to be about £800 less than what it was for the year. Is that going to be a huge issue?

Like I say I am new to having to declare my income so really worried about getting in trouble.

I will call them on Monday and let them know but this is all worrying to me.

McPie Fri 11-Apr-14 16:27:01

Any overpayments (if there have been any they will be small if you have only been on it a month) will be deducted from what they award you for the next 12 months when you give them the actual figures for the last tax year when you phone up your renewal when your pack arrives.

AryaHouseStark Fri 11-Apr-14 16:28:55

We're had a drop but it's because this is the first proper week in the next tax year - it would have told you on your last awards notice what your 14/15 payments would be - it did on mine anyway

AryaHouseStark Fri 11-Apr-14 16:30:45

Gaaah zombie thread confused

Samu2 Fri 11-Apr-14 16:33:26

Oh I see this is a zombie thread.

Thanks McPie.

emma369 Sat 07-Jun-14 22:51:51

What if you had £150 but it suddenly got reduced to £11

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