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PANICKING re term time/tax credits

(9 Posts)
cakedup Mon 09-Jan-17 21:20:35

Does this sound right to you?

I am a lone parent. I have just started a new job. 37.5 hours a week (not including lunches) term time only. I spoke to HMRC today and they said they will calculate my tax credits based on 37.5 hours a week for 52 weeks. This was backed up by calculations I did online.

I thought the hours would be divided up over the year?? Because I'm not actually working 37.5 hours a week throughout the year. Why are they disregarding the weeks I'm not working?

I'm so stressed out about this. I have finally found a job that I love and I don't think I can afford to keep it. I'm barely better off than I was unemployed, considering travel expenses etc.

OddBoots Mon 09-Jan-17 21:35:49

I might be misunderstanding how TC are calculated but as I understand it TC are only given if you work over 16h a week and there is a bonus if you work over 30h a week so that rule would work in your favour in that regard. Then I think it is calculated on your income and you can submit that as an annual income that is the amount you actually get paid so you won't lose out.

Or have I got it completely wrong?

cakedup Tue 10-Jan-17 15:13:23

According to the online calculator, I will receive the same amount of tax credits as I did when I was unemployed. So once i've worked everything out, losing housing benefit - paying rent, losing council tax support etc. I will be about £100 a week better off. Half of that will go on travel. Then I have work clothes and general expense of being out and about to consider.

When unemployed, I was cooking from scratch all the time (won't have time for that now) and selling bits and bobs on ebay to make ends meet (won't have time for that either). I was living on the breadline.

Now, working 40+ hours a week and I'm still going to be completely skint.

Babyroobs Sun 15-Jan-17 15:49:16

How old are your kids? As they get older, childcare costs will reduce and you have the benefit of not having to pay childcare in the holidays. In the long term you will be better off. Also you may be able to increase your earnings and get promotion in the longer term?

Reality16 Sun 15-Jan-17 15:54:23

The only way to make it accurate is to call them every time you stop or start working. Otherwise you are assumed to be working and getting holiday pay.

Hamiltoes Sun 15-Jan-17 17:10:21

You would rather be on benefits than £100 a week better off? hmm

AndNowItsSeven Sun 15-Jan-17 17:13:12

What do you mean disregarding the weeks you aren't working. You are lucky to get the same tax credits as you did when you were unemployed, most people get less.

MoreCrackThanHarlem Sun 15-Jan-17 17:19:03

Your tax credits will be based on your earnings, not your hours.
I assume you are paid all year round?
Regardless, £100 a week better off is a considerable amount.

TreeTop7 Sun 15-Jan-17 17:22:58

If you are working 37.5 hours per week for 39 weeks of the year, which is a typical term time plan, you multiply 37.5 by 39 and then divide by 52 to get the weekly figure. This takes you below 30, sadly. You'd need to work 41 weeks per year (this works out at just over 29 but rounding up is OK). You'd be better off working the Easter holiday (for example) so that you have 41 weeks, maybe using annual leave to cover childcare, asking your ex to do it, or requesting favours from relatives/friends.

Another option would be to keep your hols as they are but increase your working week to 39h if at all possible.

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