Tell the Child Benefit Office if you go abroad for more than 8 weeks.

Going abroad for a short time

You’ll still get Child Benefit if you leave the UK for a short period, eg on holiday or for medical treatment.

Reason for leaving How long you can get Child Benefit payments for
Death of a member of your family Up to 12 weeks
Medical treatment for you or your family Up to 12 weeks
Any other reason, eg holidays or business Up to 8 weeks

Going abroad for longer

You may continue to get Child Benefit for longer if you go to live in certain countries or if you’re a Crown servant.

Living in the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland

You can get Child Benefit for children living with you within the EEA or Switzerland. You must pay National Insurance in the UK (ie you’re employed or self-employed) or get 1 of the following benefits:

  • Contribution-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • Incapacity Benefit
  • Contribution-based Employment and Support Allowance
  • State Pension
  • Bereavement Allowance (Widow’s Pension)
  • Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit

If you and your partner live in different countries you may qualify for Child Benefit or its equivalent in both. The country the child lives in will usually pay the benefit. If the benefit is more in the other country, that country will pay you extra.

Living in a country that has a social security agreement with the UK

You may be able to get Child Benefit if you’re living in:

  • Barbados
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • Canada
  • the Channel Islands
  • Israel
  • Kosovo
  • Macedonia
  • Mauritius
  • Montenegro
  • New Zealand
  • Serbia

Contact the Child Benefit Office to find out if you can make a claim.

Crown servants posted overseas

You can get Child Benefit if you’re a Crown servant working anywhere outside the UK - whether or not your child lives with you. Before you were posted abroad you must have been either living in or posted to the UK.