The UK Rules
'Follow the Regulations'
Living with Someone Else

If Your Child Lives with Someone Else

This section has information on Child Benefit if your child no longer lives with you. Check how contributions to their upkeep affects a claim.

MULTIPLE CLAIMS: As a rule, payments continue for eight (8) weeks if your child stops living with you.

But, if they live with someone else, such as a friend or a relative, there must be no other claim for the same individual.

You need to know when you can claim and what happens for a multiple claim.

Find out how can you change who gets the benefit for your youngster.

The Child Benefit Office will inform you if they receive another claim for the same child. The staff can also help you determine who should claim Child Benefit if you are unable to decide yourself.

Child benefit payments may continue for longer than 8 weeks even if your kid lives with someone else. But, this only applies if you make contributions to the youngster's general upkeep.

Contributing to Your Child's Upkeep

You should be contributing to your child's upkeep by the same amount or more than the benefit payment. If so, you could continue to receive Child Benefit rates beyond the regulatory 8 week period.

As a rule, upkeep contributions include money for food, clothes, presents, and pocket money. It can also include financial assistance to provide them with somewhere to live.

You have a choice of how often you make contributions to your child or children. They can be weekly, monthly or in a single lump sum paid to cover a set period of time.

Even so, missing one or two payments over a long period may mean that the Child Benefit Office treat this as though you have contributed for the whole period.

Note: You must contact the Child Benefit Office and inform them any time your circumstances change.

Making Contributions to Several Children

As a rule, the Child Benefit Office treat contributions for more than one child as an equal split. An exception may apply if you ask them to consider something different.

But, they still count even if more than one person contributes to the same person. Thus, the total amount of contributions must be at least as much as the Child Benefit you expect to receive.

Court Order Payments and Agreements

What if you make payments towards their maintenance under a court order or agreement? In this case, you may still get Child Benefit if your child is living with someone else.

These payments get treated as a contribution towards the child. But, only if the court order or agreement actually covers their upkeep.

Changing who Claims Child Benefit

Despite claiming Child Benefit while your child lives with someone else, the rules allow only one person to get the payment. You should contact the Child Benefit Office if you want someone else to claim the entitlement.

If so, follow these four steps:

  1. Explain that you want to stop getting Child Benefit.
  2. Tell them who you want to receive the Child Benefit instead.
  3. Make sure you inform the other person to make a new claim.
  4. Changing your mind later means you will need to make a new claim yourself.

High Income: Child Benefit Tax Charge

High income tax charges may be incurred if you or your partner have an individual income over £50,000. You can use the benefits calculator to work out the amount of Child Benefit you have received in a single tax year.

Following that, you can determine whether you will need to pay the High Income Child Benefit Tax Charge.

Claiming Child Benefit If Your Child Lives with Someone Else