Further eligibility for some high earners for child benefit

Taxpayers with eligible children need to opt back into child benefit within three months if they were affected by the old £50,000 high income child benefit charge.

The source rules can be found at https://www.gov.uk/child-benefit-tax-charge

The cap was increased from £50,000 to £60,000 from 6 April for high income child benefit charge (HICBC) and families with one taxpayer earning up to £80,000 per annum can still benefit to some degree from child benefit payments.

The charge is tapered so if a parent or their partner, earns between £60,000 and £80,000 it may still be worth claiming.​

There is a 1% charge on child benefit for every £200 of income that exceeds £60,000. If income exceeds £80,000, the charge is equal to the amount of the child benefit payment.

Those families who ceased to claim the child benefit in previous tax years because of the child benefit clawback, which historically started when one partner earned at least £50,000 per annum will need to opt back in to claim - it is important to note that the deadline to opt back into child benefits is 5 July 2024.

‘The child benefit clawback – where the value of the child benefit is clawed back via additional taxes – typically meant that those families with one taxpayer earning above £60,000 per annum – received no net income from claiming child benefit.

‘Whilst the child benefit clawback system remains, the rules were eased in March’s Budget. As such, those families who previously chose not to receive the child benefit but who have the highest earning taxpayer earning no more than £80,000 per annum should now pro-actively register for child benefit from 6 April 2024. Otherwise, they could risk losing their child benefit entitlement.

‘Although many families – particularly those with irregular earnings due to overtime or bonus payments or who are self-employed – may not know whether one partner / spouse will earn over the £80,000 threshold in a tax year, might be inclined to ‘wait and see’ before they claim the child benefit, the reality is that child benefit claims can only be backdated for a period of three months.

‘A wait and see approach could literally mean you cannot claim the benefits to which you would otherwise have been entitled.’

Child benefit increased from £24 to £25.60 for the eldest child, while the rate for other children rises to £16.95 from £15.90. Families with one child will now receive up to £1,331 a year – an annual increase of £83.20, and up to £881 a year per additional child – an annual increase of £54.60.