How to claim tax credits

4. Backdate a claim

When you make a claim, your tax credits are usually backdated automatically by up to 31 days. You don’t have to do anything.

If you’re claiming other benefits

You have to ask for your tax credits to be backdated if you get:

  • Income Support
  • Jobseeker’s Allowance (income-based)
  • Employment and Support Allowance (income-related)
  • Pension Credit

You might not get the full backdated claim if you stopped getting one of these benefits in the last 31 days and you’re claiming both Child Tax Credit and Working Tax Credit.

Backdating by more than 31 days

Tax credit claims can sometimes be backdated by more than 31 days if you:

  • apply within a month of getting refugee status
  • apply within 31 days of qualifying for certain sickness or disability benefits, such as Disability Living Allowance or Personal Independence Payment

Don’t apply to backdate these claims until you’ve been given a decision on your refugee status or disability benefits.

You should still apply for other tax credits if you already qualify for them, for example if you have children.

How to backdate a claim

Include a page with your claim form confirming:

  • your name, address and National Insurance number
  • the date you started work
  • the date you started getting one of the benefits listed, if you’re not in work
  • the date you got a decision on your refugee status or disability benefits - if you’re applying to backdate by more than 31 days