MSE News: Tax credit renewal packs being sent out, but phone lines already jammed



  • welshone1
    welshone1 Forumite Posts: 131 Forumite
    I'll give it a try, thank you. Hope noone else is following this thread lol.

    Seriously though it's beyond a joke. I am always absolutely scrupulously honest at all times with tax credit and housing benefit and frankly, it would be easier just to bloody lie, than this incredibly painful and time consuming hassle to keep both updated with changes in circumstance and to keep cross referencing the changes in tax credits to the housing benefit people. I work full time, and it's ridiculous that I have to rely on all this nonsense just to make ends meet for me and my family. Plus, despite being telling both about any and every change absolutely promptly, I'm constantly paying back over payments on both due to their stupidly slow and inefficient operations. The fact you cannot get through on the phone at this time of year, year after year after year, is utterly ridiculous.

    I get straight through at 7.45best time to call
  • gemmakins12
    gemmakins12 Forumite Posts: 3 Newbie
    Hey all! I know we are all frustrated by tax credits! Im sure I have been given the wrong info by one of the operators. Here goes:

    I started my Maternity leave on june 1st. before that I was receiving carers allowance and a part time wage. My partner continues to work full time and we have one child and one due 6th august.

    I am on maternity pay now and I have also stopped receiving carers allowance. Ive taken early maternity leave due to back problems.

    My maternity allowance is £82.80 p/w. However, as it is non taxable I do not have to declare it as income. So I am not earning. we are on my partners wage alone.

    I finally get through to tax credits only to be told I cannot report this type of change until I have had my baby. (due 6th august).

    I have looked on various other .gov sites and nowhere can I find a clear list of what changes count as income changes. All I continually come across is to tell hmrc of all changes. As my child isn't due until august we could lose money.

    This is the first time in 3 years we have needed to claim this benefit. I'm shocked at how bad the system still is!

    I asked for my renewal number so I could just get off the phone and do it online. Apparently these are generated by a system that no one ever has access to. I also asked when my renewal pack was sent out. It was issued to me end of may. Whether it was posted then or not, the operator had no idea.

    So, sorry, slight rant going on. But my main question is; Maternity allowance. an income change or a new baby change? I have also posted on net mums to see if anyone else has had the same issue.

    Any help, previous experience most helpful, or any sites I haven't looked at. xx
  • gemmakins12
    gemmakins12 Forumite Posts: 3 Newbie
    You can't update a new baby until the baby is born and has been named.

    You can update a change to the current tax years income at any time.

    So maternity allowance is an income change you believe? Yea I know I cant do anything about the baby, which is why I'm concerned that if I don't report the maternity allowance change now, instead of 2 months time I'm going to lose money x
  • gemmakins12
    gemmakins12 Forumite Posts: 3 Newbie
    The change is that you no longer have a wage or carers allowance. You need to tell them how much you've had so far this tax year (and if you plan on having any other taxable income before the year ends). Maternity allowance isn't an income for tax credit purposes so you don't need to declare it.

    You wouldn't lose the money but any backdate would be held back until the end of the year.

    Thank you, that was exactly what I was trying to explain on the phone to them. It is an income change, not a new baby change. I'm not going mad. Will phone again tomorrow. I have worked out our predicted outgoings for the year as I did have two months of wage. I was all prepared and to be shot down was really frustrating x
  • tkwad
    tkwad Forumite Posts: 183
    Part of the Furniture 100 Posts Combo Breaker
    Bear_time wrote: »

    I'm sure if you inform them, your payments will change. Do you have an overpayment at all?

    I must appologise bea time, I have only just seen this message! I finally have the profit figures and he made a profit, but added to his employed income before he lost his job its basically almost but not quite finished our claim. I think we were entitled to around 555, and received much much more :( ...This was not something I could have predicted, we had a period oer winter where he had no income for almost 3 months, and his redundancy kept us afloat....anyways I phoned the tax credits to renew and had to say i didnt agree with the declaration (for it was automoated service?) and i then got to speak to an advisor as there was nowhere I could tell them that this tax year he didnt have his paid employent just self its been done.

    When i used the calculator on the figures i inputted we should get tax credits and working tax credits too, my only concern is how the heck i will afford to pay back the overpayment.
  • SpideressUK
    SpideressUK Forumite Posts: 196
    Part of the Furniture 100 Posts Photogenic Combo Breaker
    When my income dropped mid-year by stopping being self-employed they "disregarded" the first £2,500 of income loss so were paying us WTC (from my husband working) and CTC (looking after our child is why I stopped working) based on as if we had an income that was £2,500 higher than it was. Once the next tax year kicked in that £2,500 of loss was no longer "disregarded" and our tax credits went up by about £100 per month so they had basically saved themselves about £600 for the 6 months they forced us to be paid as if we were on a higher income. I suspect it might be the same for things like maternity leave etc, they will probably "disregard" the first £2,500 of income loss.
    After 30 years of mortgage paying we are blessed to say we are MORTGAGE FREE 11 years early :)
This discussion has been closed.
Meet your Ambassadors


  • All Categories
  • 338.7K Banking & Borrowing
  • 248.6K Reduce Debt & Boost Income
  • 447.5K Spending & Discounts
  • 230.6K Work, Benefits & Business
  • 600.7K Mortgages, Homes & Bills
  • 171K Life & Family
  • 243.9K Travel & Transport
  • 1.5M Hobbies & Leisure
  • 15.9K Discuss & Feedback
  • 15.1K Coronavirus Support Boards