We seem to have child benefit coming out of our ears (not literally of course, that would be nice…) The changes announced in George Osborne’s Budget have got people talking, papers writing and parents asking. But who really understands what’s going on?
Questions we’ve been getting from our readers clearly show that many parents are still confused about whether they’ll still be getting child benefit, and how much they’re entitled to.
We’ve done the chasing for you, spoken to the government, the experts and the accountants, and here’s a simple break-down of what you need to know about the new child benefit rules:
Current child benefit allowance
Currently, anyone who lives in the UK and is directly responsible for a child is eligible to receive child benefit, regardless of what their income is. This is how much child benefit you can currently get:
- £20.30 per week for your oldest child
- £13.40 per week for each of your other children
Child benefit changes
This happy system will no longer continue. The new Budget sets out a gradual withdrawal of child benefit allowance for higher earners.
How much child benefit can you get?
In 2013, you’ll be able to keep your child benefit if the highest earner in the household earns up to £50,000. If the highest earner has a salary between £50,000 and £60,000 your child benefit allowance will slowly decrease. If the highest earner brings home over £60,000, your child benefit will be withdrawn.
Take a look at this chart for a detailed breakdown of how much child benefit you’re entitled to.
How you can hold on to your child benefit
If you or your partner are in the higher earners’ bracket, you don’t necessarily have to wave goodbye to your benefit.
There are ways to beat the child benefit changes!
For example, pump more money into your pension or into childcare vouchers to tip your salary below the cut-off point.
Child benefit FAQ
We know this is still a complex topic, and many parents have unanswered questions. So we’ll be bringing in our experts to answer all your questions on child benefit, then we’ll publish a simple FAQ.
If you have a question you’d like answered on child benefit, please comment below or email us on firstname.lastname@example.org by Wednesday 4 April 2012, and we’ll get the answer for you!