What you'll get

There are 2 Child Benefit rates.

Who the allowance is for Rate (weekly)
Eldest or only child £25.60
Additional children £16.95 per child

You must contact the Child Benefit Office if you’re paid too much or too little.

Any Child Benefit payments you get will count towards the benefit cap. If you’re affected by the cap, you’ll still get the full amount for your Child Benefit payments but your other benefits may be reduced.

How and when Child Benefit is paid

Child Benefit is usually paid every 4 weeks on a Monday or Tuesday.

You can have the money paid weekly if you’re a single parent or getting certain other benefits, such as Universal Credit.

You can get the money paid into any account, apart from:

  • a Post Office card account
  • a Nationwide cashbuilder account (sort code 07 00 30) in someone else’s name

You can only get the money paid into one account.

Child Benefit and protecting your State Pension

You’ll get National Insurance credits automatically if you claim Child Benefit and your child is under 12.

These credits count towards your State Pension, so you do not have gaps in your National Insurance record if either:

  • you’re not working
  • you do not earn enough to pay National Insurance contributions

If you do not need the National Insurance credits, your family may be eligible to get the support instead. Either:

If families split up

If a family splits up, you get £25.60 a week for the eldest child.

If you have 2 children and one stays with you and the other stays with your ex-partner, you’ll both get £25.60 a week for each child.

If you both claim for the same child, only one of you will get Child Benefit for them.

If you have other children who are entitled to Child Benefit, you’ll get £16.95 for each child.

If families join together

If 2 families join together, the eldest child in the new family qualifies for the £25.60 rate and any other children who are eligible will get the £16.95 rate.

If you or your partner earn over £60,000

If either your or your partner’s ‘adjusted net income’ is over £60,000 a year, you may have to pay the High Income Child Benefit Charge.

Your adjusted net income is your total taxable income before any personal allowances and less things like Gift Aid. Your total taxable income includes interest from savings and dividends.

If you have to pay the charge, you can still get the other advantages of Child Benefit like National Insurance credits. The charge will not be more than the amount you get from the Child Benefit payments.

Work out if your adjusted net income is over £60,000 using the Child Benefit tax calculator. If it is, the calculator will also tell you how much of a charge you’ll have to pay.

If both you and your partner have an individual income of over £60,000, then whoever has the higher adjusted net income is responsible for paying the charge.

If either you or your partner has an individual income of £80,000 or over, you’ll be charged the same amount as you make through Child Benefit payments. You’ll end up with no extra money from Child Benefit.

You’ll need to fill in a Self Assessment tax return each tax year to pay the charge.

You can make a claim and opt out of getting payments if you do not want to pay the charge. You can still get the other advantages provided by Child Benefit, like National Insurance credits.