Child benefit

Last updated: 01/04/2021

You can get child benefit if you are responsible for a child or qualifying young person.

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You can get child benefit for each child or young person that you are responsible for. That usually means that they live with you and you take care of their day to day needs. You do not have to be their parent. A child is someone who is under 16 years of age. A qualifying young person is someone who remains in full-time non-advanced education, like school, up until the age of 20. Only one person can get child benefit for each child even if you share their care with someone else.

Child benefit rates:

First child: £21.15
Second and subsequent children: £14.00

If your income is more than £50,000 p/a you can get child benefit but you will pay more income tax. One per cent of the annual amount of child benefit received will be added to your income tax for every £100 that your income exceeds £50,000. This is known as the High Income Child Benefit Tax Charge. If you earn more than £60,000 100% of the amount of child benefit you receive will be added to your income tax.

You can choose to stop receiving child benefit rather than pay extra income tax but it is important to remember that child benefit protects your National Insurance record which affects your pension. It also shows you have a child you are responsible for. If you choose to continue receiving child benefit you must register for self-assessment with HM Revenue & Customs and fill in a tax return to declare the child benefit.


How to apply for child benefit

You can apply for child benefit after you register your baby’s birth. Print form CH2 from HM Revenue & Customs, complete and return to the address given.


For more information:


Child Benefit Helpline: 0300 200 3100

Textphone: 0300 200 3103 Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm