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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.

MammaTJ Tue 23-Jul-13 22:19:28

Once upon a time................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................then they all lived happily ever after.

That is how I see the OP. grin

AllDirections Tue 23-Jul-13 22:22:47

Child is under 5 and 'minder' is a lone parent.

MammaTJ I think the parent and 'minder' are hoping you're right grin

But I just have a bad feeling about the whole thing sad

ebwy Wed 24-Jul-13 01:05:19

it's not true, but looking after someone else's kids counts as work and you have to declare it and it can cause you to lose some of your JSA

Xihha Wed 24-Jul-13 03:18:53

I've just been through this with a friend of mine because she's taken on her godson because the parents couldn't cope but has not yet got a court order for residency.

You don't need to have a residency order or parental responsibility or any court order to get the child benefit (although it would make it easier) but the child has to be living with you full-time, 2 days a week is not enough to be able to claim anything and as looking after a child prevents the minder from actively seeking work whilst the child is there and limits what work she can take on it will affect her benefits, possibly even stop them, even if she's not getting paid for looking after the child.

You can not get income support for looking after someone elses child unless the child lives with you full time and you are the one responsible for the childs care, she would basically have to say the mother wasnt around any more or wasn't a fit mother.

CB will check with social services, doctors, playschool/nursery/school, health visitor and any other benefits agencies, so all of that would have to be using the minders name and address, if theres any doubt they can even arrange to do a home visit to check the child is living there. Basically they run a high risk of getting prosecuted for benefits fraud if they do this.

AllDirections Wed 24-Jul-13 07:43:29

You've mostly all said what I think and I managed to talk my friend out of doing this a few months ago but now it's all back on sad

Maybe the job centre has given the wrong advice but I doubt it. I think probably the 'minder' has said that the child is living with her full time. Last time it was going through she planned to move to a 3 bed house which fell through when my friend pulled out of the arrangement hmm. She has 2 DC of the same gender and my friend's child is the other gender so at the moment she would have to pay a bedroom tax but with my friend's child benefit she wouldn't.

The whole thing just stinks! Can my friend get into any trouble legally over this, e.g. committing fraud? Or just the 'minder'? Even if there are no repercussions I'm still disappointed that my friend is happy for the benefit system to pay childcare, which is what would be happening and why my friend is so keen to do this. My friend is on a good salary, hence only getting a very small amount of tax credits.

ArabellaBeaumaris Wed 24-Jul-13 07:52:29

Is your friend nuts? Why does she want to do this?

MrsDeVere Wed 24-Jul-13 07:52:53

There is no loophole.
Only the main carer of the child can claim CB.
You can't get it for looking after a child a couple of days a week!

They can both into trouble for committing fraud.
I cannot see this getting off the ground.

If friend B wants to claim for friend A's child she will have to apply.
DWP are likely to ask why someone with no PR is claiming for a non related child who has no SS involvement.

We had to get a letter from a SS confirming we were our DGN's carers.

AllDirections Wed 24-Jul-13 07:59:02

Is your friend nuts? Why does she want to do this?

Saving £100 a week on childcare as well as 2 nights off being a parent???

MrsDeVere Wed 24-Jul-13 08:09:23

If she is saying the child is living with her full time she will have to contact SS to inform them that the child is being privately fostered.

That is the law.

AllDirections Wed 24-Jul-13 08:16:48

I don't know that the 'minder' has said that the child is living with her full time. She told my friend that she was truthful with the job centre about looking after the child 3 days and 2 nights and that they said she could do this. I can't imagine the job centre making a big mistake like that so I can only presume that she's lied to them. In fact I would imagine that the job centre would tell her that;
1) she has to be available for work (which she's not if she's looking after this child)
2) she has to be registered to be a childminder

Nottalotta Wed 24-Jul-13 08:42:59

When your friend comes to renew her tax credits she'll be upset!

Nottalotta Wed 24-Jul-13 08:43:48

And the minder will also be upset if she blabs this about town and someone reports them.

IneedAsockamnesty Wed 24-Jul-13 08:50:51

I can imagine the staff at the Job centre saying something like this because I've lost count of the amount of times I've had to send a member of staff down with a client taking with them a print out of the various pages of the dwp staff manual with highlighter on the relivant bits that they have previously given incorrect information about.

But even if a member of staff gives incorrect info when you claim you still have to sign the declaration so its still fraud.

It would be fraud for both parties involved, the one who receives TC can also get a % of her childcare paid by TC so its also insane.

Mrsdv is right, it's against the law to take a child in without informing social services. This is a total minefield and will involve lying all over the place. Your friend will also be complicit in the fraud if this goes ahead.

jacks365 Wed 24-Jul-13 09:01:33

The social services issue is worse than you realise. If they deem that the 'minder' is not fit then they can take the child into care and the parents would have to fight to get the child back. That is a risk not worth taking.

MrsDeVere Wed 24-Jul-13 09:55:26

OP the only way you can claim CB for a child is if you are the main carer for the child.
If you are the main carer for a child and you are not an immediate relative e.g. grandparent or aunt, you have to register the arrangement as a private foster care placement.

She cannot have it both ways.

LithaR Wed 24-Jul-13 11:51:02

Oh great, another benefit bashing thread.

I get £175 a fortnight since the DLA have decided my chronic pain and difficulty walking isn't disabled enough. Want to swap with me and I have no pain and job, you are more than welcome to it.

It'll take me 18 months to appeal it, which I'll be lucky to live through.

ArabellaBeaumaris Wed 24-Jul-13 11:56:45

litha sorry to hear you are struggling. I don't think this is a benefit bashing thread - I don't partake in those! But people are pointing out the pitfalls in what sounds like a silly plan.

Xihha Wed 24-Jul-13 12:19:29

LithaR, sorry to hear that, DLA seem to be doing that to a lot of people lately. I don't think people were benefit bashing so much as pointing out the problems with a bad plan though, plus the OP was talking about a woman trying to con the system, which are the kind of people who cause problems for people who actually need the help.

NicknameTaken Wed 24-Jul-13 12:57:36

I agree it's not benefit-bashing - I think the OP means "unbelievable" as in "someone I know has a mistaken belief about it" not "OMG! It's crazy the way the benefits system just throws money at people!"

MrsDeVere Wed 24-Jul-13 13:45:36

Its not that sort of thread litha
These women have hatched a ridiculous plan and are either lying or have been massively misinformed.

AllDirections Wed 24-Jul-13 19:13:07

Thanks everyone for the information, I'll be passing it on to my friend. I was right to find it unbelievable that this was allowed but the 'minder' is adamant that it's fine to do this and my friend has been totally taken in by it. I might suggest a trip to the CAB to get it confirmed.

To make matters worse SS were involved when this child was born due to risks from the other parent so I'm sure that any change to the child benefit would trigger SS involvement automatically.

MrsDeVere Wed 24-Jul-13 19:15:29

No it wouldn't.
SS and DWP are not that joined up.

I would pass on the info though.
It all sounds totally crackers.

Babycino81 Wed 24-Jul-13 19:24:09

This is not correct and is rather dangerous for JC staff to be advising! Other MN'ers are correct in the sense that this isn't a childcare arrangement but a private fostering arrangement a would involve (should involve!) notification and certain checks to be undertaken by Children's Services. HTH

Babycino81 Wed 24-Jul-13 19:35:03

http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/20130401151715/https://www.education.gov.uk/publications/eOrderingDownload/Family%20and%20Friends%20Care.pdf

IneedAsockamnesty Wed 24-Jul-13 20:21:30

Babycino,

Its not a private fostering arrangement they are intending to pretend the child lives with the friend in order to commit fraud the child will not actually be living anywhere other than with the mother.

MrsDeVere Wed 24-Jul-13 20:27:18

It isn't an actual one sock but if they say the child is living with the other woman it will be seen as one.

Which is another layer of fraud.

Which makes this whole plan even more utterly rubbish and confusing confused

sorry you have had a crap day btw..

IneedAsockamnesty Wed 24-Jul-13 23:10:52

Thanks mrsD you know what they say about things tomorrow only getting better?

Well I've made sure they will by making sure I'm not doing direct service provision tomorrow grin

I've pondered about this thread all day today (tbh it was a handy distraction) and no matter what way I look at it I cannot see any feasible reason why any parent would do this especially if there income warranted tax credits it just does not make sence , I have 2 benefit experts in my office and they can't see any reason either, apparently if the mother does go along with it not only does she lose out financially but her part in the friends fraud (as a separate issue to her own direct fraud) would more than likely be seen as more serious than the friends fraud due to the nature of it and involving a child. Its like a daily mail wet dream just one involving very stupid people.

internationallove985 Thu 25-Jul-13 00:08:25

No I don't think that's true or as a previous poster said everyone would be doing it.
I must say this though why is it all of a sudden seen as a job the minute you're looking after someone's child. It's a question that has always baffled me and I'd love an employment minister to answer it.
I'm a single mum and I have always worked through choice, but I would never condem a women who chooses to stay at home as we all have different needs and reasons. B.T.W sorry if I went a bit off topic there. xxx

Beckamaw Thu 25-Jul-13 00:46:38

It may not be a commonly known fact, but it is possible for two different people to claim CB and Tax Credits for the same child.
I know this to be absolute fact.

Beckamaw Thu 25-Jul-13 00:47:51

I meant one claiming CB and the other claiming TC. Not both claiming both, IYSWIM.

bochead Thu 25-Jul-13 00:59:05

This harebrained scheme is wrong on so many levels.

If you look after other people's children on a regular basis for more than about 2 hours at a time (to allow for genuine volunteers with scouts, sports, after school clubs etc) in this neck of the woods then you are expected to do the appropriate training and qualify as a registered childminder.

Look after someone else's child for more than 28 days in some areas or 6 weeks in others and you have to inform SS that you are a private foster carer. They take an extremely dim view if they are not informed and the onus is on the parents and the carer to do. Receipt of child benefit for a child to whom you are not related would be seen as evidence of permanent residence. I expect SS will feel that they already have on their books far more appropriate foster carers than this so called "friend". Your friend could lose her child for good to the care system.

The bedroom tax is hitting thousands of families in rental accommodation in the same way as those with mortgages have been hit for years. While I feel for them it has to be said that not everyone is resorting to fraud! If the lazy cow is too bone idle to get a job or train as a childminder she's not a fit carer for somebody else's child by definition.

Financially this may cost your friend more than she realises. Noone's job is secure but your child benefit is the gateway benefit to government help if you are made redundant, have an unexpected accident etc. If your friends circumstances change and her friend refuses to hand back the child benefit for any reason at all (bedroom tax anyone?) then she'put her CHILD in a very vulnerable position where the only help she might get is a food bank willing to overlook the lack of child benefit (& that's unlikely!) to feed her child.

Childcare costs everyone a fortune until their children are old enough. You just have to deal, and I say that as a single parent myself. There's no point trying to maintain a quality of life that excludes your child cos they are in care. Getting a job with a criminal record is almost impossible in the current climate. This is a very short sighted solution.

Frankly your friend sounds too daft to have parental responsibility for a child right now.

No expert on these things so I do hope SS don't take the same dim view of this scam that I did or she's taking a terrible risk.

WafflyVersatile Thu 25-Jul-13 02:35:46

I doubt this is a loophole.

However I've thought for sometime that setting up as a childminder and nominally looking after your mates kids while she looks after yours should be a good way round the monumental stupidity of forcing sahps to go out and work for minimum wage that will all be spent on paying for other people to look after your children whilst being paid minimum wage.

Looking after your children is work.

Isn't child benefit linked to national insurance and pensions in some way too? Bit vague on that but it's not something you want to give away.

AllDirections Thu 25-Jul-13 07:32:29

Receipt of child benefit for a child to whom you are not related would be seen as evidence of permanent residence.

^ Does anyone have a link to support this? ^

It's what I've been telling my friend all along but has been convinced by the 'minder' that it's not the case.

I agree with everything you've said bochead. The 'minder' is doing this so that she doesn't have to work and so that she can get a bigger house. I love the child in question and it makes my blood boil that she using him in this way. It's up to her what she does with her life but not when she involves others in her scheming, though I have felt a bit stabby sometimes when she's said that she won't work because her children want her at home and implied that she's a superior parent because she doesn't use childcare.

MrsDeVere Thu 25-Jul-13 08:24:05

I don't have a link to hand all but in order to claim CB for a child you have to be their main carer i.e. they have to live with you for the majority of the time (I am not sure how this works with joint residency but that clearly not the case here).

So if you look at the criteria for claiming CB it is pretty much telling you that getting CB is evidence of permanent residence IYSWIM.

Sock exactly your post. I cannot for the life of me work out what the point of this scheme is and how it could work.

MrsDeVere Thu 25-Jul-13 08:30:51

I have just had a look
I am not surprised this pair think they can do it.

The way the advice is set out has changed. Its not nearly as clear cut as it used to be and there is no explicit mention of where the child lives.

Which is weird confused

Under criteria it says about the age of the child etc but nowhere does it say 'the child has to live with you'

And then there is some stuff about how you can still claim if the child lives with someone else as long as you are pretty much handing it over to the carer.

confused

who can claim? Anyone who is bringing up a child

"You should claim Child Benefit as soon as:
your child is born
a child you're responsible for comes to live with you
you adopt a child who's living with you
you start paying towards the cost of looking after your child unless they live with someone else who's already getting Child Benefit"

how claiming cb can protect your state pension

who qualifies? 'Normally the child has to live with you' the only exceptions to that are if the child lives with someone else but you support them ie the other parent. Then you must hand it over anyway. This does not apply to your friends. Otherwise the exception is if your child is taken into local authority care temporarily in which case you can continue claiming for a while, 12 weeks I think.

MrsDeVere Thu 25-Jul-13 09:54:10

I am sure it used to be far more explicit.
I know the rules because I fostered and then adopted (as well as having birth children).
I have also looked after other children on a temp basis.

But when you look at the info its not very well written IMO.

A couple of social workers told teenagers I know, who had left home, to get their parents to hand over the CB to them. This is ok for the first 8 weeks (I think) but it doesn't seem right.

If your child is not living with you and is living on someone's sofa surely it is not ok to keep claiming even if you give it to the child?

It seemed a way of SS not having to take financial responsibility for vulnerable children (not just stroppy ones who don't want to live with mum)

But reading all that I am not so sure now

ChocHobNob Thu 25-Jul-13 10:00:56

It is a loophole and a dangerous one for the parents because as recipients of the child benefit, the minder could also claim child support off the parents from the CSA.

It's maybe not explicit but I think it's clear enough that you can only claim for a child that lives with you, or a child that does not but for whom you are legally responsible (parent or someone with residence or sgo)
There is no loophole. The only way they will make this happen is to lie.

Snorbs Thu 25-Jul-13 10:38:53

I don't think it's a loophole. It's just the deliberate telling of pre-meditated lies with intent to defraud the benefits system. People go to prison for that kind of thing.

ChocHobNob Thu 25-Jul-13 10:50:23

It's do-able because as MrsD said the wording is not clear. Child benefit is given to the person with the main day to day care of the child so technically if they have the child 5 days and 2 nights a week that could be the majority. But yes they would be lying because they are not the "parent" of that child and would only get given it if the real parents agreed that the minder should receive it, which would be lying. Technically the parents should still receive it because ultimately they still have main responsibility for the child. The child would still be registered at their house for school and medical reasons.

So on further reflection, no, not a loophole. Your friends are being ridiculous allowing it. Would they agree all full time childminders or Nannies should get child benefit for the children they look after.

Main care does not mean the person who looks after the child 9-5 it means the person the child lives with. Otherwise as you say nannies could claim it! There is no loophole, the wording is clear enough. The child must live with you or elsewhere if you are financially maintaining it. If the child lives elsewhere then it's pretty obvious this only applied if you are the parent/legal carer of the child, not the childminder.

MrsDeVere Thu 25-Jul-13 10:55:14

I don't think its a loophole either.
The child has to be resident rather than just spending a lot of time at the house.
Plus there is the private foster care regulations to consider and I bet the friends don't know about these

They might well get away with it for a while but they will get caught.

I've just applied for income support. There are around eleventy milli

...on questions and no way would these people be able to answer them all honestly. They would absolutely ask what the circumstances were of the child living with the childminder and they would not be able to answer honestly.

zipzap Thu 25-Jul-13 11:01:10

Could you ring up the HMRC advice line and get them to clarify the situation so that you're clear on it? And then get your friend to ring them up too - even be there while she does? It would perfectly reasonable to say that the job centre told them to do this but weren't very clear on the exact details and implications so could they please explain

Hopefully if she hears the problems and risks from the HMRC she will realise it's not such a good idea! And also have ammunition to stand up to the other friend who seems determined to push it on her regardless of the actual realities based on what she'd like to be true!

ChocHobNob Thu 25-Jul-13 11:02:41

What do you mean by resident though MrsDe? An older child could flit between 2 or more homes if they wished.

I don't know if I missed a post (I did skim read) but I didn't know for certain that the "minder" only had them 9-5. With the inclusion of 2 overnights it sounded like it was more than a childcare provider.

For example if it was the grandparents looking after the child because they weren't getting on at home and the grandparents were taking over the majority care then it would be fine for them to claim child benefit.

If it is just a friend helping out with lots of babysitting, then it is fraud.

MrsDeVere Thu 25-Jul-13 11:08:31

I am talking about this specific case choc.
I have zero knowledge of residency issues with separated parents etc.

In this case only one person can claim CB and that would be the person with whom they live for the most time. You couldn't claim CB if your child was living for 6 days a week at their grandmothers unless you were handing over the equivalent for their upkeep.

In this case that would mean that the child in question is being cared for by someone who is not their immediate family and that brings in the private foster care regulations.

(Actually that should read 'you shouldn't' because I know lots of birth parents who do just that and the carer doesn't rock the boat for fear of backlash.)

MrsDeVere Thu 25-Jul-13 11:11:03

choc in the case of older children I think that is why the 8 week rule comes in. Teenagers come and go. My eldest boy did. Left home and then came back several times for a few weeks at a time.

If we had cancelled an reapplied every time it would have been a nightmare.

When he moved out we cancelled the CB even though he was asking for it hmm
call us mean but I didn't want to be committing fraud so he could have a bit of free cash.

DespicableWee Thu 25-Jul-13 11:23:45

I wish this actually was a straightforward financial loophole. I'd be raking it in during the summer holidays. My DSs have a few friends whose parents are above the earnings threshold for CB so can't claim it. These kids are here a huge amount in the holidays, for several hours a day most days. Some sleep over here a couple of nights a week as well. It's a reciprocal thing, my DSs sleep over at theirs some nights too and if they aren't here, they are at one of the other houses but they use my house as a base so are here more often than any one other house.

If this were a real loophole, I could claim these kids lived here and put in a claim for CB for them then cancel it after term starts. It would be a lovely little lump sum when the claims went through, just in time for all those start of term expenses. It wouldn't be taking CB away from the actual parents,because they can't get it anyway.

Only I can't,because this isn't a real thing. Your friend has been misinformed by someone with an ulterior motive and it could cost her dearly.

NicknameTaken Thu 25-Jul-13 11:35:07

it is possible for two different people to claim CB and Tax Credits for the same child

beck, this is true, but not in the circumstances outlined here. At one stage I was claiming CB while my exH claimed tax credits. I was absolutely upfront with HMRC about this and stated exactly how much time DD was spending with her father. But we both did have parental responsibility and it doesn't mean I can set up this kind of arrangement with a friend.

IneedAsockamnesty Thu 25-Jul-13 12:25:19

There is no loop hole, you have to be financially liable for the parent of the child so they can have no income or be under 18 themselves

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