Transfer to child tax credit to be completed by end of 2006

Published on 9 November 2005

By the end of 2006, the Government expect to have completed its programme of migrating child elements for all Income Support and Income-based Jobseeker's Allowance (JSA) claimants to the child tax credit system. This article explains what is in the Government's latest announcement.

Background

Child Tax Credit (CTC) was one of the new tax credits introduced in April 2003 to be paid to families with children. It was the Government's intention that CTC would replace the child elements of Income Support and JSA.

Rather than abolish the child elements of Income Support and JSA to coincide with the introduction of tax credits the Government decided on a programme of migration which would slowly move people from claiming money for their children through Income Support and JSA to claiming CTC for them.

Originally the Government intended that by April of this year all of the child elements of Income Support and JSA would be abolished. However, this has not happened and the Government has now extended this date so that it is anticipated that the end date of the migration (and final abolition of all child elements) will be December 2006.

The current situation

Since the introduction of tax credits there has been some confusion about whether new claimants of Income Support and JSA should receive the child elements of these benefits or whether they should claim CTC for their children.

The Government have now issued new, clear plans for migration in the Social Security (Tax Credit) Amendment Regulations 2005 (SI 2005 NO. 2294). These changes take effect from 8th September 2005.

From this date:

1. The applicable amounts and premiums of Income Support and JSA currently available for children will no longer be available for new claims made on or after 8.09.05.

Example
If a single mother claims Income Support on 23.10..05 she will receive Income Support for herself only and will have to claim Child Tax Credit for her children

2. If someone is already in receipt of Income Support or JSA but has no children, they will not be paid the child elements if a child subsequently joins their family on or after 08.09.05.

Example
If Mr Smith has been claiming Job Seekers Allowance for the past 8 months and Mrs Smith gives birth to a child on 01.11.05 they will continue to receive JSA for themselves but they will have to claim Child Tax Credit for their child.

3. Those people who are currently receiving Income Support or JSA with applicable amounts and premiums for children will continue to receive this until December 2006 at the latest when the migration to CTC should be complete. If those people who are already receiving child elements have more children they will also receive the child elements of IS/JSA for the subsequent children.

Example
If Miss Y has been claiming Income Support for thelast three years for herself and her three children she will continue to receive Income Support with the child elements until December 2006 at the latest. Then she will have the child elements of Income Support stopped and will claim CTC for her three children.

Similarly if Miss Y has a fourth child say on 12.11.05 she will be entitled to an additional child element on her Income Support as she is an existing claimant.

Further information can be obtained from your local job centre plus office or your local social security office in relation to Income Support and Job Seekers Allowance.

You can obtain further information about Child Tax Credit from the tax credits section of our website.

(09-11-2005)

Contact Name: Victoria Todd (Tel: 0844 579 6700 Fax 0844 579 6701)