Step one: work out your maximum child tax credit
The maximum CTC you can get is made up of:
•child element of £2,830 a year for each child. Note: you cannot get a child element for a child born on or after 6 April 2017 if you are already claiming for two or more children. There are exceptions (see CPAG’s Welfare Benefits and Tax Credits Handbook for these); plus
•family element of £545 a year. You only get this if your claim includes a child born before 6 April 2017; plus
•disabled child element of £3,415 a year for each child who gets disability living allowance (DLA), personal independence payment (PIP) or is certified as severely sight impaired or blind; plus
•severely disabled child element of £1,385 a year for each child who gets the highest rate care component of DLA or the enhanced rate daily living component of PIP.
These are the maximum amounts for the tax year April 2020 to April 2021. You get less than the maximum if your income is above a set threshold.
Mairi has two children: Daisy, aged six, and Meena, aged nine. Meena has asthma and gets the lowest rate care component of DLA. Mairi’s maximum CTC for the tax year April 2020 to April 2021 is:
Two child elements
Disabled child element
Total maximum CTC
Whether she gets maximum CTC or a reduced amount depends on her income.
If your circumstances change so that you should gain or lose an element, tell HMRC so your award can be adjusted. If you should gain an element (eg, you have a new baby), you must tell HMRC within one month, otherwise you do not get the increase fully backdated. The exception to this is that the disabled child element and the severely disabled child elements can be fully backdated if you notify HMRC within one month of the DLA or PIP being awarded.
Other changes must be notified within one month – eg, if you stop being part of a couple. For details, see CPAG’s Welfare Benefits and Tax Credits Handbook.