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HMRC internal manual

Tax Credits Technical Manual

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Changes of circumstances: Effective Dates of Changes in Circumstances - Disability and severe disability elements of WTC- Backdating

The Tax Credits (Claims and Notifications) Regulations 2002, Reg 26

This legislation was changed on 6 April 2009. If you are dealing with a change of circumstances about backdating the disability and severe disability elements of WTC and notification of that change was received before 6 April 2009, you must follow the guidance at TCTM05330 

Where a notification is given of a change of circumstances which results in an award of the disability or severe disability element of WTC or both of these elements and the notification is received within 1 month of the decision on entitlement to the qualifying benefit referred to in regulations 9(1)(c) (TCTM02510) or 17(2) (TCTM02550) of the WTC (Entitlement and Maximum Rate) Regulations, the award can be backdated longer than one month.

The element(s) can be backdated to;

  • the first date from which the benefit claimed was payable; (See Example 1) or
  • if later, the date falling one month before the claim for the benefit was made; (See Example 2) or
  • if later, the date that the current claim for WTC was made (or treated as made under regulation 7 of the Tax Credits (Claims and Notification) Regulations; (See Example 3) or
  • for the purposes of the disability element, if later, the first date that the person or persons satisfies the conditions of entitlement for the disability element of WTC. (See Example 4)

Example 1

A person received WTC from April 2003, and they claim DLA (HCC) on 13 October 2011. Entitlement to DLA (HCC) was decided on 4 June 2012 and was payable from 13 October 2011. The claimant notifies HMRC within one month of this decision being made. The severe disability element of WTC can be backdated to 13 October 2011, i.e. the date the DLA (HCC) became payable.

Example 2

A person received WTC from April 2003, and they make a claim for a Constant Attendance Allowance in conjunction with a War Pension Disablement Benefit on 13 October 2011. Entitlement to the Constant Attendance Allowance is decided on 4 July 2012 and benefit is payable from 19 October 2009. The claimant notifies HMRC within one month of this decision being made. The disability element of WTC can be backdated to 13 September 2011, i.e. the date falling one month before the claim for the benefit was made.

Example 3

A person working 30 hours a week claims DLA on 13 May 2011, they claim WTC on 20 June 2012 which is backdated to 20 May 2012. Entitlement to DLA is decided on 4 July 2012 and is payable from 13 May 2011. The claimant notifies HMRC within one month of this decision being made. The disability element of WTC can be backdated to 20 May 2012, the date that the current claim for WTC was treated as made.

However, we can now consider whether it is appropriate to consider backdating the original WTC claim using reg 8 of the Tax Credits (Claims and Notifications) Regulations. (TCTM06104)

Example 4

A couple have been getting WTC since April 2003. One of them works 30 hours per week, the other is disabled and does not work. The disabled person makes a claim for DLA on 13 October 2011, and starts working 16 hours per week on 17 May 2012. They notify HMRC of the DLA decision within 1 month of it being made and the WTC disability element is backdated to 17 May 2012. This is the date that the disabled person satisfied the entitlement conditions for the disability element of WTC.