How to claim Working Tax Credit: a simple guide

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What is Working Tax Credit?

Working tax credit is a type of benefit provided to people who are on low income. It pays you certain amount of money every month.

Who can claim Working Tax Credit?

Anyone over the age of 16 is may be eligible for Working Tax Credit. The main requirement is that  you have to be in paid employment working at least 30 hours a week.  There are exception to this rule though if you are disable, a lone parent, or over the age of 60. In these scenarios you would only be required to work 16 hours a week.

Couple with one or more children may claim for Working Tax Credit if they work 24 hours a week between them. For example if the husband works 23 hours a week and wife works 1 hours a week, the couple can claim Working Tax Credit.

How much is paid as Working Tax Credit? 

Amount varies according to your circumstances such as your age, amount you earn a week, number of hours you work in a week and whether you are single or have kids. There is a good government website which you can use to have an estimate of how much you will get every month as your WTC payment. The website would also tell you if you are eligible or not. Click here for the website.

How to apply for Working Tax Credit?

You will need to call HMRC (HM Revenue and Customs) on  0345 300 3900.  You must call the number as you would require to speak to one of the staff members for your assessment and eligibility whether you can claim WTC or not. Once this is done and you are eligible to apply, you would be sent a claim pack containing the form and other details. 

The phone line is available from 8.00 in the morning to 8.00 in the evening Monday to Friday and 8.00 in the morning to 4.00 in the afternoon on Saturday. The office is closed on Sundays and Bank Holidays. For more information on contacting HMRC click here

When contacting HMRC on the given phone number make sure you have the following information ready:

a) Your national insurance number

b) Your permanent address with post code

c)  Your contact phone number and email address

d) The average number of hours you work each week

e) The amount your earn weekly or monthly before tax

f) Details of your family members (date of birth, national insurance, weekly income)

g) Any other income you or your household gets such as any benefits, rental income, dividends or interest from banks.

i) Any childcare you pay for due to you and your partner both being in work.

j) Any P60 (shows you how much you got paid in the last tax year by working) or P45 (is given to you when you move from one job to another).

What happens if you have not worked for a while?

If you have not worked for a while you can still claim Working Tax Credit provided that you will be in paid employment in the next 7 days from the date of your claim.

What happens if I did not know that I could apply for WTC?

In general, Working tax credit can be back dated for no more than a month from the date your claim is received by HMRC.  So it is important that you claim at your earliest convenience otherwise you will lose money.

What else do I need to know?

You will have to renew your Working Tax Credit claim every year. HMRC sends you renew forms near the renewal date ( usually in June – July). You can also renew it over the phone once you have your claim form received.

If your circumstances change, for example, you change your working hours, your income increases or goes down, change of address etc., tell HMRC immediately using the contact number given above.

What if I am self-employed?



See also:

Child Tax Credit


Life in the UK test

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