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to be VERY confused by my benefits claim

(34 Posts)

I've never done this before, and am getting soooo confused sad I've been employed since I left school and wasnt expecting to be unemployed so havent planned for it at all, and havent got a clue what I need to do sad

The only thing that has changed since last week is that I'm now no longer on unpaid mat leave, I'm officially unemployed. Last week we were entitled to family allowance and £10 pw child tax cred. Without going into too much detail, we now seem to be entitled to £60pw child tax cred, and working tax cred, plus JSA and family allowance, meaning that benefits entitlement nearly equals DHs earnings (not in a low paid job either)!! shock
I dont understand, when I did the tax cred form, I put on there that I wouldnt equal my earnings this year as I would be unemployed.
Surely this is completely wrong and cant have changed so much without anything actually changing?!

Plus, to add to this, we've got our child tax cred as a cheque, in DHs name? Even though I wrote that I was primary caregiver and gave bank acc details?

Is anyone more experienced around?

knobbysEx Mon 15-Aug-11 22:24:36

Have you filled this out? May throw light on it

http://taxcredits.hmrc.gov.uk/Qualify/DIQHousehold.aspx

It was the direct gov calculator that I filled out, I'll try that other one now...

elliejjtiny Mon 15-Aug-11 22:29:29

child tax credit should go to you as you are the primary care giver, working tax credit should go to your dh. If you look onthis website
you can check your benefits are right. Sometimes the benefits system surprises you in a good way, when ds3 was born our tax credits went up by loads and I thought they must have made a mistake but they hadn't.

HauntedLittleLunatic Mon 15-Aug-11 22:30:45

First things that come to mind are these:

Are you claiming as a couple - as you should be - if this has been inaccurately reported or interpretted by the tax credits office this would lead to incorrect and large TC payment....although it sounds as tho you have as your tax credits would be higher than that if your household income is zero (i.e. they were not aware of you having a DH).
What is family allowance - never heard of this - do you mean child benefit. This is fixed rate so shouldn't have changed and does not get means tested on income.

You could put your info into teh benefits cheker here. It is independent and pretty accurate I believe unless you have unusual circumstances like being a FT student for eg.

HauntedLittleLunatic Mon 15-Aug-11 22:32:00

I thought working and child tax credits could only be paid to one partner and that you could choose who. I have never heard of them being paid as a cheque though. Always bank transfer.

biddysmama Mon 15-Aug-11 22:35:00

tax credits iirc are calculated on what you earned in the last tax year arent they?

biddysmama Mon 15-Aug-11 22:36:40

tax credits are in the earners name (but go into the account you asked them to) and child tax credits go into the childrens primary carer

saladsandwich Mon 15-Aug-11 22:37:49

you really need to double check with the job centre, if your husband is working i don't think you would be entitled to JSA? and i'm almost sure if only one of you is working then ct and wt is worked out on the person who is working but paid to who ever you decided it is paid to, 60pw seems alot in childtax credits, as a lone parent on income support i get about £60 a week x

FabbyChic Mon 15-Aug-11 22:40:24

Don't forget council tax and housing benefit.

festi Mon 15-Aug-11 22:45:39

I think it has been worked out as if you are a lone parent. I would not pay in the check and alert them first thing tomorrow. As single (non working) parent I get £60 per week CTC. I dont think you should be claiming JSA either, I think Income support only if you are eligable with a working partner.

i will speak to the job centre in the morning, was just trying to get a head start tonight as thought i could do it online (you can, but its not working)

festi Mon 15-Aug-11 22:47:31

you need to contact tax credits aswell as Job centre

HauntedLittleLunatic Mon 15-Aug-11 22:50:09

You can claim JSA with a working partner (but only the non means tested one you get for teh first 6m).

I review my previous statement. Assuming you have 1 child it does sound as though you have been assessed as though the household income is zero. This is obviously not the case so they either haven't acknowledged your DH as a partner or they haven't acknowledged his income.

I think you may be right (looking at the other calculator) - I think I've missed DHs income somewhere. Went back into the website to try to look but its deleted my info now so got to start from scratch... (btw I think therefore my tax credits are right as they are)

Dont worry tax payers, I havent been overpaid yet, just calculated what I should have wrong grin

How does council tax and housing benefit work? Is it all tied together with the JSA app?

saladsandwich Mon 15-Aug-11 23:11:53

council tax benefit and housing benefit is through my local council, nice hefty form that one

shmoz Mon 15-Aug-11 23:12:28

For Housing Benefit/Council Tax Benefit you need to submit an application to your local council.

Housing benefit is not payable if you have a mortgage, you only get it if you pay rent.

Blueberties Mon 15-Aug-11 23:15:27

At least you've paid in for all of that. Don't stop looking though. Don't get too comfy!

festi Mon 15-Aug-11 23:19:21

some areas and councils will pay housing benifit on the interest part of a mortgage for an agreed period of time, especialy if made redundant, so that is worth asking about.

shmoz Mon 15-Aug-11 23:24:53

here's a link to the help you might get towards mortgage interest payments

House is rented so thats fine. From family though, is that a problem?

Btw, have redone the directgov form now and I'd done it wrong first time blush I'm an idiot... grin

Should be entitled to JSA though, so will sort that in the morning over the phone (website still not working...)

Thanks all! smile

Bigpants1 Mon 15-Aug-11 23:31:42

Housing bebefit IS payable if you have a Mortgage. A certain percentage of your mortgage will be paid by DSS straight to your Mortg. Provider, and any shortfall needs to be picked-up by yourselves. So, apply for it and Council Tax Benefit. You need to get the forms from your local Council Offices.
If you are confused re what you are entitled to, it would be worth your while making an appoint. at the Job Centre and speaking to someone face-face.
As someone previously said, you have paid for these benefits while working, so claim them while you need them.

Btw, forgot to ask, there arent any probs claiming JSA when pg are there? I'm only a little bit at the mo (just coming up 6w), so I can feign no knowledge if I have to...?

madhattershouse Mon 15-Aug-11 23:34:57

IME apply for everything, the calculators and advisors are often wrong. If you simply apply for everything the worst that will happen is that it comes back that you are not entitled to some benefits!

maighdlin Mon 15-Aug-11 23:38:32

My sister was on JSA when pregnant. She told them at 12 weeks and they said congratulations and at signing on she literally had to sign and they never annoyed her about what jobs she had applied for etc. then at 29 weeks they filled in the maternity allowance form and sent her away. they seemed really nice at that jobcentre.

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