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High-income earners need to re-register for child benefit

High-income earners need to re-register for child benefit

Child benefit supports parents or guardians of children under 16, or under 20 if in approved education, by contributing towards the costs of raising them.

Since January 2013, the High Income Child Benefit Charge (HICBC) affects those earning above a specific threshold but this was revised in the Spring Budget 2024.

Initially, families with one parent earning over £50,000 saw a phased reduction in Child Benefit, ceasing at £60,000.

However, from 6 April, the HICBC threshold has increased to £60,000, with a new tapered charge between £60,000 and £80,000, reducing the benefit by one per cent for every £200 earned over £60,000.

This adjustment exempts about 170,000 individuals from the full charge and could affect you if your income is within this range as you are now eligible to claim.

In essence, the Government raised the threshold to ease the financial strain on middle-income families and encourage more parents to claim Child Benefit, avoiding the previous steep penalties for higher earnings.

Moreover, the Government plans to consult on a shift to a household-based assessment system by April 2026, aiming for a fairer approach by considering total household income.

If your earnings exceed £50,000 and you now need to register or adjust your Child Benefit, you likely fall into two categories:

  • New claims: You can register for a child not previously claimed for, with benefits backdated up to three months or from the child’s birthdate.
  • Existing claimants: Adjust your HICBC via Self-Assessment if your income falls within the new threshold.

If you require any other guidance relating to the HICBC, contact our team of experts.

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