What happens to tax credits when my child is 16+?
Last updated: 31/03/2022
Child Tax Credit is paid for your children. Working Tax Credit is paid for you if you work 16 or more hours per week. The amount you receive from both Child and Working Tax Credit depends on your circumstances.
If Child Benefit stops, Child Tax Credit will stop being paid for that child too. If you are still getting Child Benefit for another child, you will continue to receive Child Tax Credit for them. You will also receive Working Tax Credit for yourself if you are working 16 or more hours per week.
If you only have one child getting Child Benefit and it stops your Child Tax Credit will also stop. You will then be treated as a single person so can no longer get Working Tax Credits under the same rules as a single parent. This means you will have to work at least 30 hours per week, instead of 16, to get Working Tax Credit. The amount of Working Tax Credit you get will be based on your earnings.
Call the Tax Credit Helpline to report any changes of circumstance so you do not get an overpayment which you must pay back.
Applying for Universal Credit when tax credits stop
If you can no longer get Working Tax Credit you can apply for Universal Credit instead. If you get it, and how much, will depend on your circumstances. When you apply for Universal Credit any Housing Benefit you were getting will stop. You will get help with rent as part of Universal Credit.
Call the Lone Parent Helpline for advice on moving from tax credits to Universal Credit: 0808 801 0323