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returning ex-pat - do i qualify for benefits

(21 Posts)
Steaknife Tue 14-Jul-09 15:41:43

I have been living overseas, but in europe, for the last three years. I may have to return to the UK with DD - 10 months.
I am married but if this comes to pass will be separated.

I did spend six months in tax year 2007/08 working so have paid tax in that time, just not in the last tax year.

does anyone know how I will stand with regard to benefits. Will I be eligible even though I have not paid tax/NI in the last tax year?

I have not been working or paying into any european system since last working in the UK because of being PG and then looking after DD.

DH pays into French system.

expatinscotland Tue 14-Jul-09 15:46:02

I think I'd just use my parents' address or a friend's address and never mention that I'd been abroad, tbh.

Steaknife Tue 14-Jul-09 15:49:34

but wont they want to know all about why I am living where and why I have not been working/claiming and why I am not in the system, where is dh etc etc etc?

It is a very long time since I had anything to do with benefits agencies.

expatinscotland Tue 14-Jul-09 15:50:59

I'd just say you separated from him and have been living at your parents, but now they want you out.

Tamarto Tue 14-Jul-09 15:52:44

Benefit fraud is the new way to go is it?

mosschops30 Tue 14-Jul-09 15:55:15

Yes I mean, there are plenty of people who actually need benefits and are not getting what they deserve even when they have paid tax/NI etc.
Would you expect to turn up in another country and claim benefits when you had neither worked nor lived there for 3 years?
Soft touch britain anyone??

Steaknife Tue 14-Jul-09 15:56:04

I am not going to lie - I am hopeless at it and think these things always come back on you - so if anyone really knows how I stand re benefits I would be really grateful.

Steaknife Tue 14-Jul-09 16:00:08

mosschops - I am not looking for something I am not entitled to. I want to know what I am entitled to. I am a british citizen living in france and my husband just walked out on me. I may have to come home with no money, job or place to live. I am just trying to find out where I stand legally.

Tamarto Tue 14-Jul-09 16:02:41

www.entitledto.co.uk might be useful.

Steaknife Tue 14-Jul-09 16:10:33

thank you.

LIZS Tue 14-Jul-09 16:23:14

I think you'll be able to make some claim for Income Support and Child Benefit if you aren't already getting it, as you have fairly recently paid tax and are given some credit for having been pg and with a young child since. If you dh has paid into the French system there may be a reciprocal agreement with UK - is he French or British . If you have to produce a birth certificate for dd then presumably it will be obvious where you have lived.

bronze Tue 14-Jul-09 16:28:03

mosscops depends on the situation

My parents live abroad. They moved there when my Dad retired. They will be gone about 5 years and yes I would expect them to be able to claim beenfits/pension when they get back as they have paid into the system (all their working lives in their case)

Plenty of people who claim benefits who've never put anything in.

What about people who never live in a country more than a few years but pay tax all their lives. Someones got to help them

bronze Tue 14-Jul-09 16:28:23

sorry Mosschops

cyteen Tue 14-Jul-09 16:29:25

I'm a bit surprised at some of these responses thb. If a woman with a 10 month old baby and no job, home or immediate means of support isn't someone who 'actually needs benefits', who is? I don't believe Steaknife is asking how she can scrounge a council house rent-free in perpetuity - she is trying to make sensible plans in case the future pans out this way. MN is usually much more supportive of women in these situations.

cyteen Tue 14-Jul-09 16:30:03

tbh, not thb [tired]

Helen31 Tue 14-Jul-09 16:32:06

Not sure why anybody is giving Steaknife a hard time as we have reciprocal benefits arrangements within the EU anyway.

Good luck!

Steaknife Tue 14-Jul-09 16:32:29

DH french so I was thinking there might be a reciprocal agreement. Quite happy to get a job if I can but I have no idea how much childcare costs and so on.

Helen31 Tue 14-Jul-09 16:36:53

This might help you Steaknife:

http://benefits-adviser.direct.gov.uk/index.html

You didn't say whether you are a UK national or not, which seems to be significant here.

Steaknife Tue 14-Jul-09 16:45:35

Helen, yes I am British national, English born and bred. Just been off on some adventures!

I guess I am worried that because I haven't paid into the system for a while that i may not be entitled to anything other than family allowance, which I hope has gone up from the 7 quid a week it was when I was little.

JeMeSouviens Tue 14-Jul-09 17:00:55

I have a friend who moved to the UK from France (not national in either of those countries). She has right of abode in the UK from a previous marriage, but had never lived, nor worked in the UK previously. She split from her DH and was still entitled to Housing Benefit and something else, not sure if it was WTC.

So it appears, that you should be able to claim some benefits on your return.

Can you phone a CAB from where you are or send an email to them asking for advice?

ElenorRigby Wed 15-Jul-09 14:41:06

If France was your babies country of "habitual residence" you would either need to have your husbands permission to bring the baby to live in the UK or apply to a French court to take the child. Link

Mumoverseas knows about these cases I think

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