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HMRC internal manual

Claimant Compliance Manual

From
HM Revenue & Customs
Updated
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Child Benefit and Tax Credits: Child Benefit Higher Rate

Only one person can be awarded Child Benefit for a child or qualifying young person at any one time and a higher rate of Child Benefit is paid for the eldest qualifying child or qualifying young person.

If a family unit is created by two individuals who are already claiming child benefit they can

  • agree that one of them will claim Child Benefit for all the qualifying children or qualifying young people, or
  • choose to keep their individual claims to Child Benefit. In this case, only one of them will be entitled to the higher rate for the eldest child or qualifying young person

A family unit exists where people are

  • married and living together
  • unmarried but living together as husband and wife
  • civil partners and living together
  • not civil partners but living together as though they were

If there is more than one child or qualifying young person and the claimant is no longer entitled to an award for the eldest, the higher rate is paid for the next eldest qualifying child or qualifying young person.

Main difference to Child Tax Credit (CTC)

CTC has no higher rate as such. It is composed of different elements. See TCTM02250