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Tax credit changes, 3 kids, new partner claim

(66 Posts)
anastaisia Sun 26-Mar-17 20:18:38


Just after a bit of advice. Me and my boyfriend of several years are thinking about moving in together. We don't and haven't lived together before so I've had a single parent tax credit claim running.

He's currently a student and is/will be working part time around retraining.

I have 3 children and am self employed on a fairly low wage.

Ideally we'd wait a bit longer to move in, but he will be studying for 3 more years. Am I right in thinking that if we don't make a joint claim in the next week or so, any new joint claim would be treated as a new claim and we'd only get tax credits as though we have 2 children in the household under the new rules? Or would it be protected because the children are older?

I don't want to make a rushed decision because of this - but I equally don't want to leave it a few weeks too long and then we find we can't afford to move in together for 3 more years because of the 3 child rule changes!


Leatherboundanddown Sun 26-Mar-17 22:20:52

I THINK that you are correct in thinking that it needs to be before 31st March to claim for more than 2 children because a single to joint claim is classed as a new claim. If you were to do this now you would still be ok for the three kids but as soon as universal credit comes in then that will change things again. You can check on the website the dates that your council will have switched to a full service area.

anastaisia Tue 28-Mar-17 11:01:53

Thanks, looks like we're probably too late anyway - to get a new claim form can take up to 2 weeks.

We were talking about waiting till June to make any changes as his current course finishes and he'll be working more hours for approx 6 months before the intake for the next level. So we'd have a little more money to ease the transition to living together, and it would be at a less stressful point in the year with no assignments due in! So I suppose at least knowing we'll get a bit less whether we do it next month or then takes the pressure off a bit. I'm just kicking myself for not realising it would include us because it would be a new claim not count as my existing one (have obly ever needed to claim them as I've been on my own with the kids)

Funnyonion17 Tue 28-Mar-17 11:08:16

No I'm pretty sure that because the children were born before, you should get tax credits for all.

FallenSky Tue 28-Mar-17 11:40:10

It's only for children born after April 2017 I believe.

RebootYourEngine Tue 28-Mar-17 11:45:39

I also thought it was only for children born after or on 5/6th april 2017. Im sure you can phone hmrc and make a claim over the phone.

Leatherboundanddown Tue 28-Mar-17 12:17:00

I am pretty sure that after April 17 any new claims can only claim for up to 2 children but I may be misunderstanding the wording. I think it is all intentionally vague!
Bear in mind too that you will be migrated to UC once your area is a full service area and your tax credits renewal is due as renewal is automatically counted as a change in circs even if nothing has changed. Sneaky.

Read through the policy docs on the UC website.

Lagirafe Tue 28-Mar-17 12:52:07

The wording is extremenly difficult to understand - I have a politics degree and have read through the Act and there are vague provisions for transitional arrangements but basically it would appear that once UC is rolled out everywhere (2019?) any slight change of circumstances and you will only be able to claim for 2 children regardless of when they were born.

Leatherboundanddown Tue 28-Mar-17 13:59:56

I think that is correct. Transitional protection is only valid until there is any change of circs at all, so renewal will automatically migrate you onto it so by summer 2019 most will probably be moved over.

Wishiwasmoiradingle2017 Tue 28-Mar-17 14:02:26

All dc on current tc claim are eligible for uc as I understand it. Called a protected claim I think.

Leatherboundanddown Tue 28-Mar-17 14:03:29

But transitional protection doesn't last forever. Only until there is any change. A change can even be moving house etc.

Lagirafe Tue 28-Mar-17 15:45:57

Yes that's what I understood too Leather it's not been in the press at all how sneaky the rules really are. Any change in circumstances e.g. House move / start work / end work / reduce hours / new partner and you will lose the transitional protection and the 2 child rule will apply.
So in reality everyone (with 2+ DC) will be affected.

Leatherboundanddown Tue 28-Mar-17 16:09:11

Yes I think realistically the longest people will be protected is one year max from switchover.

Leatherboundanddown Tue 28-Mar-17 16:12:03

It is disgusting nobody is talking about it! It will push people into complete crisis

Lagirafe Tue 28-Mar-17 16:31:55

Yes I hope someone picks up on it soon and it gets publicised more widely sad
I am a LP to 4 under 10 so many more years. I do work part time but no idea how I will make up the shortfall!

anastaisia Tue 28-Mar-17 17:05:10

It's ridiculous too, because we'd cost the system less living with my boyfriend and getting overall less tax credits than if we decide we can't afford it if one child (that I can't exactly give away) doesn't count any more and so stay living apart until my children are older and it's easier to earn more/or the transitional protection ends for us!

Babyroobs Tue 28-Mar-17 18:07:40

Lagirafe : I think it has been fairly widely publisised but there has not been a lot of resistance to the change of policy. Quite a few threads on MN which have been started on the topic have seen many posters giving support to the changes, something which has quite shocked me !

Leatherboundanddown Tue 28-Mar-17 18:37:28

I also noticed that Babyroobs

Lagirafe Tue 28-Mar-17 21:06:22

Really? Most people I speak to IRL seem to think if their child was born before April 2017 they're fine. Even googling and I struggled to find the nitty gritty of the transitional protection etc. Quite technical language too so not easy for everyone to understand.

AndKnowItsSeven Thu 30-Mar-17 00:01:53

Everyone currently claiming is fine its only if you have a break in your claim of more than six weeks that you will only be able to claim for two dc. Change of circumstances are fine.

AndKnowItsSeven Thu 30-Mar-17 00:02:46

Transitional protection simply relates to the amounts of money .

AndKnowItsSeven Thu 30-Mar-17 00:05:37

Any change in circumstances e.g. House move / start work / end work / reduce hours / new partner and you will lose the transitional protection and the 2 child rule will apply.
So in reality everyone (with 2+ DC) will be affected.

Not true at all , you will lose money if your UC award is less but that is all.

Lagirafe Thu 30-Mar-17 06:44:31

Can you point me to where you found this information please?

Leatherboundanddown Thu 30-Mar-17 08:39:50

And the UC award will always be less, that is the whole point of it. The amounts are less than the current tax credit system and the more you earn through work then your award is reduced.

If you go to the UC website then the docs are there with the amounts, the dates for roll outs in council areas and also a list of everything that counts as a change of circs, I viewed these as pdf files.

In terms of transitional protection, once your area becomes full service (eg where I live that is March 2018) you can only stay on the current tax credits system until you have a change of circs. Renewal counts as one of these changes. So the longest someone in my area could be claiming tax credits of any kind is summer 2019 as renewal tends to take place by July. So your amount will only be protected for a year or so (max-depends on time of year) once the area changes.

At this point you will be forced to claim UC. Implications : there will be a six week delay for payments.
There are savings thresholds that didn't exist with tax credits, so potentially many claimants now will be completely ineligible.
Parents will be expected to make steps to get into work when their children are much younger (there is another pdf online with a table of ages and expectations for work activity)

If there is another working parent in the household earning enough then the other may possibly be able to stay home with young children but it completely depends on the hours worked and amount earned in the household.

AndKnowItsSeven Thu 30-Mar-17 09:26:24

Leather that's not true either transitional protection starts when you move to UC as long as you are migrated rather than a change of circumstances. You could keep transitional protection for many years if you have no changes. It would be naturally eroded though as rates go up etc.

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