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HMRC internal manual

Child Benefit Technical Manual

Payments: High Income Child Benefit Charge election

{#IDAW4LGD}Election not to receive Child Benefit

SS A Act, section 13A, SS A Act (NI), section 11A

From 7 January 2013, a Child Benefit claimant may elect not to receive Child Benefit payments for all of the Child Benefit they are entitled to receive if that claimant expects that, if they continue to receive their payments, they or another person would be liable to a High Income Child Benefit charge in respect of payments made for future weeks in that tax year.

{#IDAE2LGD}When an election takes effect

SS A Act, section 13A(3) and (9), SS A Act (NI), section 11A(3) and (9)

A person’s election will take effect once it is treated as made that is, both after Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs receive it and

  • on the Monday after a person’s most recent Child Benefit payment; or
  • where a person’s Child Benefit payment has already been issued, the Monday after the week(s) this payment relates to; or
  • on the day a person requests if later than either Monday


A person is paid Child Benefit 4-weekly, 3 weeks in arrears and one week in advance. Where a payment is due for the period 6 May 2013 - 2 June 2013, the date a person’s election takes effect depends on when Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs receive that election. If the election is received on

  • 14 May 2013, the election will take effect from 6 May 2013
  • 28 May 2013, the person will already have received their Child Benefit payment for the period up to 2 June 2013 and so their election will take effect from 3 June 2013
  • 24 May 2013, although the payment for the period up to 2 June 2013 will not have been paid into the person’s account, it will have already been issued and so the election will take effect from 3 June 2013

{#IDAY4LGD}Backdating an election

SS A Act, section 13A(4), SS A Act (NI), section 11A(4)

Where a new claim is received and entitlement to Child Benefit is backdated, the election may have effect in relation to payments for weeks beginning in the period of three months ending immediately before the claim for the benefit was made.

Note: An election is only backdated up to three months where a new claim is received and a Child Benefit award is not already in payment to the same person for different children.


A Child Benefit claim for a child born on 3 April 2013 is received on 21 May 2013. The person does not receive Child Benefit for any other children and elects not to receive their payments as they would be liable to the High Income Child Benefit charge. The Child Benefit claim is awarded from 8 April 2013. Because the person does not receive Child Benefit for any other children, the election takes effect from 8 April 2013 and so no Child Benefit payments will be paid for that award.

{#IDAM2LGD}Overpayment being recovered from an award

SS A Act, section 13A(9), SS A Act (NI), section 11A(9)

An election does not have effect if, when we receive it

  • an amount of overpaid Child Benefit is being recovered from the Child Benefit payable to the person
  • undue benefit paid by another country is being deducted from the person’s Child Benefit payments

A person must make a new election when the overpayment has been recovered