Child Tax Credit

Have you been wondering if your family is entitled to any financial support, but finding it tricky to work it all out? You are not alone! Tax Credits are fiendishly complicated, in fact, they're so complex, it’s estimated that although nine out of ten families with children qualify, only 80 per cent of those eligible actually apply for them!



Don’t worry, Dad Info is here to make things clear and simple, making sure that you don’t miss out on the support you are entitled to receive.

 So here's our guide to Child Tax Credit…

Who is eligible?

 If you have a child who you are responsible for, you may be eligible for Child Tax Credits, including if you are not working.

You can claim if your child is:

  • aged 16 and under, up to 31 August after their 16th birthday
  • aged under 19, or under 20 in certain circumstances, if they're still in full time education.

How much you can get will depend on your income and the number of children you have:

  • the more you earn, the less you will receive.
  • If your child was born after 6th April 2017, you won’t be entitled to the family element of child tax credit, nor will you be able to claim any additional tax credits for more than two children. 

What if I'm separated?

The Government will only give the Child Tax Credit to one parent - the person deemed as having the main responsibility for the child. This can feel unfair as in many separated families, it's true that there may not be a 'main carer' anymore, and yes, even if you look after the children 3.49 days a week and the child's mother has them 3.51 days a week, she is classified as the main carer and will receive 100% of the child tax credit.

Contact the Tax Credit Helpline (contact details below) if you’re not sure you are responsible for the child.

If you do share responsibility for a child, and you can’t agree who should claim, you can both apply and the Tax Credit Office will make the decision. In reality, if there is a dispute about who should receive the tax credit, it will generally go to whoever receives the Child Benefit. 

How much is it worth?

Child Tax Credit is made up of two elements: Family and Child.

The family element is paid to all families who have at least one child who was born before 6th April 2017, and is worth up to £545 a year.

The child element is paid for each child and is worth up to a maximum of £2780 a year. If your first child was born after 6th April 2017, you will only be able to claim Child tax Credits for up to two children.

If you have children who were born before 6th April 2017, you can claim Child Tax Credits for all of them. However, if you have more than two children, you will not be able to claim additional tax credits for any additional children born after the 6th April 2017. 

How is it paid?

Tax Credits are paid directly into the bank account of the main carer for all the child/children. 

How do I claim?

You can claim Child Tax Credit by completing a claim form – to get one of these you will need to apply, either online or on the phone.

You can do this online at or calling the Tax Credits Helpline on 0345 300 3900.

You’ll need your National Insurance Number (which you can get from your employer if you've forgotten it) and an idea of your earnings for the last financial, and this financial year.


Updated: September 2017

Hide comments (57)


  • Guest
    john Sunday, 15 January 2017


    hi me and my wife split about 5 years ago i have my 2 children every other weekend and sometimes more i have a new partner we have a child together my partner is out of work. i earn about £35000 are we entitled to child tax really struggling has i give my ex wife ect money for birthdays and Christmas has well has paying child maintenance ?

  • Guest
    I Edwards Wednesday, 18 January 2017

    Can I claim

    My wife and I both work full time and I have my daughter from a previous partner every other weekend and between four and five weeks through the year during school holidays. When my daughter is with us we provide all her clothes we give half towards school uniform and passport and I pay the correct CSA we also travel 50 mile round trip to pick up and drop off. Can we claim anything?

  • Guest
    Tg Sunday, 29 January 2017

    My ex boyfriend which

    My ex boyfriend who is my two kids dad use my address and some time he stay with kids but we don't have anytelationship since my daughter two years old . Now I had new relationship which is had one daughter with new relationship but I received letter regarding to my kids dad . Now I'm so scare to not loss my job due to he use my address anyway the house is not council house ,it's my own house . Please someone give me some detailed regarding to this issue

  • Guest
    Andrew Monday, 30 January 2017

    Joint residency

    I am wondering about who gets child benefit and tax credits for our 6 boys?
    My ex and I have joint residency of the boys. She claims ALL benefits for them and gives me nothing.
    Where is the fairness in this? Surely I am untitled to half the entitlement she receives?

  • Guest
    jason Friday, 10 February 2017

    help please

    i have a new born daughter she currently lives with my wife in vietnam awaiting her uk passport.
    Iam a true born resident of 45years of age,
    Never had to do this before, can anyone please tell me what benefits i could be eligible to, if any at all,
    my daughter is classed as a uk national, any advice would be greatly recieved, thank you ...

  • Guest
    Dan Sunday, 02 April 2017

    Does it matter who claims for the baby the dad or mum as long as it's only one person

    Me and my girlfriend are about to have a baby we live separately in our own houses but we are together does it matter witch one of us claims for the child as the money will be used for child's up keep so can the dad claim or has the mum got to do it

  • Guest
    David Hall Thursday, 06 April 2017

    Splitting benefits

    Hi I split from my daughters mother, about 2 years ago now. We have agreed to a 50/50 care split. Would I be entitled to any benefit. I'm looking at putting my daughter in to pre school and wonder what I'm entitled to? Help please.

  • Guest
    kay Saturday, 08 April 2017

    ctc court appeal

    hi all just wondering if some1 could help i get the chb and ctc for my 2 boys and they stay with there mother 10days a month all done through court now she has made an appeal to claim the ctc saying she needs help so i have to go court next month has any1 been in this situation or no what the outcome will be

  • Guest
    George Wednesday, 19 April 2017

    Can i claim child tax credit

    Me and my wife both work. we have just had a baby girl born in march. current the mrs is on Maternity. I earn £13900 Per year and the mrs earns £18600. are we entitled to child tax credits.

  • Guest
    Keith Wednesday, 26 April 2017

    financial abuse question

    My ex-partner and I are both on low incomes and claiming tax credits.
    We divide child care about 55% mum-45% dad during the day, and our son usually sleeps at his mums.
    CTC is only available to his mum, so we came to an agreement, years ago, that about 15% (£10pw) of it is passed on to me for obvious expenses, such as providing the evening meal 7 days a week.
    This seems fair, especially considering that my son's mum receives extremely generous support from her wealthy parents, and doesn't need to work for a living, whilst I have a disability, and must work every spare hour just to make ends meet.
    However my ex-partner is now claiming that our division of the CTC has been "financial abuse" on my part, and will now pursue me for child maintenance payments.
    She claims she has been backed up, even encouraged to do this, by a local govt. support worker, and her health practitioner, who both apparently expressed disbelief and outrage at my "financial abuse" of her. Adding that because I am "the father", it is I who should be making payments to her.
    At this point, I am simply lost for words.
    Can anyone tell me please, what happens next? How on earth does this work?

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