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First child, self employed... WTF do I need to look at?

(9 Posts)
SpaceDinosaur Sat 06-Aug-16 20:30:51

I think the title sums it up... I'm self employed, I'm never going to be affluent but DH and I don't struggle. We both work FT, pay the mortgage and our bills... He's not a high earner at all and my income will take a massive cut when DC is born as my staff costs will massively increase.

DC1 is due at the end of the year.

Can anyone please advise me where is good to start looking in terms of anything we may or may not be eligible for please? I have literally no understanding of tax credits, SMP etc and I would like to read up and try and get my head around it all but I'm struggling with where to even start!

bramblina Sat 06-Aug-16 23:48:41

Hi there, you will be entitled to Maternity Allowance as you are self employed. It is the same amount and for the same length of time as SMP from an employer. It was about £117 for 9 months when I had dc3 nearly 4 years ago. The Government website will tell you, it's very informative. The form was very straightforward and simple. That's probably the best place to start.
Tax credits are awarded depending on your income, per child. You apply as soon as the baby is born I think. Again, you will find this on the government website. It goes by your previous years' income which is a bit annoying (I am also self empoyed as is dh) as when you need it (low income year) you don't get it then when you are entitled to it you don't get it! With being self employed and your income may fluctuate, you can tell them part way through the year (if you can predict your income to a certain extent) and they can adjust it so that you do receive more when you are not earning. Just keep an eye on it as you do have to pay back if you have received too much. You receive a "baby element" for the first year of baby which tops up what you receive- so do not delay in applying.

SpaceDinosaur Sat 06-Aug-16 23:50:35

Thank you. That really helps me to find somewhere to start from.

bramblina Sat 06-Aug-16 23:58:49

Obvs my dc3 is neraly 4 so my info might be outdated but check out the Government's website.

Maternity Allowance link

Tax Credits link

bramblina Sun 07-Aug-16 00:02:12

Oh! Also Child benefit everybody who earns less than £40k or something similar, can claim this. Remember your Mum taking a book to the Post Office every week? This is it now but paid in to your bank.
I think your Midwife might give you some info as she needs to give you a very small simple form when you are about 25 weeks in order to claim MA. It's called a B14 or something, can't remember. If I rememer correctly, you will get a form in your Bounty Pack (are they still on the go?) in Hospital for tax credits etc. Ask your mw.


SpaceDinosaur Sun 07-Aug-16 10:28:26

Bramblina you are amazing. Thank you so much. That REALLY helps!

nannynick Sun 07-Aug-16 13:31:37

From early/mid 2017 you may be eligible for Tax Free Childcare.

There is also Employer Supported Childcare which often takes the form of Childcare Vouchers.

In 2017 there will be a calculator provided by Gov.Uk to enable parents to find out which scheme is better given their individual circumstances.

tribpot Sun 07-Aug-16 13:35:17

It sounds like it might be more cost-effective for your DH to take parental leave? I assume the increase in staff costs is because you will have to pay someone to cover your work whilst you're on maternity leave?

Brown76 Sat 13-Aug-16 06:28:38

Maternity allowance, yes, if you are paying class 2 NI as self employed. If you are paying yourself a salary through your limited company you might be entitled to maternity pay through your own company. Not much difference except there is a weird rule that if you are self employed and do self employed work whilst claiming maternity allowance you have to come off that benefit after you have done 10 days work. A day's work theoretically includes any time spent working ie sending an email. If you are on SMP you can do as much self employed work as you like as well.

You apply for these benefits, using Mat 1B and can call the maternity allowance dept. who are really helpful. Also then you can apply for a card for free dental check ups and prescriptions which last till your child is 1.

Do think about how to deal with your tax, for example if you go on maternity leave and receive maternity allowance, it is not taxed because it is a state benefit. Your pay from your company or your self employed profit would be, so you might want to save up to pay yourself up to the personal allowance threshold next tax year when you might be on maternity leave rather than pay yourself that at the start of your mat leave when you would be taxed on it all.

Also you might want to tell HMRC if working as self employed and not on payroll that your pay will be down next year, and to reduce your payment on account.

Sorry if any of this not relevant to you!

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