Child Benefit also offers £250 a year of state pension – how to ensure you don't miss out | Personal Finance

Child Benefit may be claimed by a person who is responsible for bringing up a child under the age of 16, or under 20 if they stay in approved education. That said, only one person can get Child Benefit for a child.

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The payment is made every four weeks and there is no limit as to how many children a person can claim for.

That said, the amount a person gets depends on who the allowance is for – with the first or eldest child resulting in a higher rate compared to any additional children.

The state pension is based on a person’s National Insurance record, and this means that some people may face missing out on some qualifying years should they carry out the unpaid work of caring for a child full-time.

In a bid to ensure those in this situation don’t miss out, it’s possible to get National Insurance credits, which count towards the state pension.

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Child Benefit: Family and money in pictures

Child Benefit can be claimed by one person (Image: GETTY)

Child Benefit: Family in pictures

Child Benefit may be waived due to the High Income Child Benefit Tax Charge (Image: GETTY)

By claiming Child Benefit, the individual can get the National Insurance credits which count towards the state pension.

This is if the child is under the age of 12, and the recipient is not working or does not earn enough to pay National Insurance contributions.

It also means that the child will automatically get a National Insurance number when they reach their 16th birthday.

However, some people may opt against getting Child Benefit payments – and this could be due to the High Income Child Benefit Tax Charge.

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This charge affects a person if they or their partner earn £50,000 or more.

Should this be the case, some Child Benefit may need to be paid back in tax, and a Self Assessment tax return will need to be filled out each year.

If the income is £60,000 or more, the Child Benefit is lost through tax.

People who decide not to get Child Benefit payments are still directed by the government to fill in and send off the claim form.

Child Benefit: Family in pictures

Child Benefit claims offers up to 12 years on National Insurance credits for the state pension (Image: GETTY)


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Kay Ingram, Chartered Financial Planner and Director of Public Policy at LEBC Group, explained what waiving Child Benefit could mean for a low earning parent’s state pension.

Speaking exclusively to, she said: “Couples where one is not paying National Insurance via employment or self-employment, with a first child born after January 1, 2013, need to be aware that in waiving Child Benefit the low earning parent may lose credits for their state pension.

“These are currently worth £250 per year of state pension.”

However, there are ways to ensure that the National Insurance credits are still received, even if the payment is waived.


Child Benefit: Day state pension is paid

Child Benefit: The day the state pension is paid is affected by (Image: GETTY)

However, it should be noted that this would need to be completed by the lower earning partner for it to affect their state pension.

Ms Ingram explained: “Claims are made by completing form CH2 to claim Child Benefit, while waiving payment of it.

“This must be completed by the lower earner or the credits are wasted.

“If income has fallen below the £60,000 threshold due to a change in employment or loss of fluctuating bonuses, overtime etc, the taxpayer should consider reclaiming the benefit by completing form CH2.”