When we talk about benefits and allowances there is sometimes a tendency to feel bad about claiming, especially if you are in a good job, making a success of your own business or happy with your retirement income.
But if there is free money and tax savings to be made and you qualify, you shouldn’t feel bad about claiming. These benefits are available for a reason, usually to encourage certain actions that overall, increase the value of the general economy.
Here are 4 benefits that are not massively well known but that you could easily make or save money from.
4 Benefits and allowances you should consider claiming
- Child Benefit
- You can receive a Child Benefit payment for every child you have from birth until they are 16 years of age (or 20 if they remain in approved education or training).
- Either parent of the child can claim it although the payment can only be made to one.
- Currently, for the first child you receive £20.70 per week and for each subsequent child you receive £13.70 per week.
- If one parent does not work whilst they look after the child then claiming Child Benefit is vital to ensure they maintain their annual National Insurance credits towards the State Pension.
- Watch out if one parent is earning more than £50,000 per year. Child Benefit starts to reduce for earnings above this figure and can disappear altogether if you earn £60,000 per annum or more.
- Luckily there are ways to avoid this by potentially splitting your income between you and or making pension contributions that can bring your taxable income down below the threshold.
- ‘Grandparents credit’
- Officially known as the Specified Adult Childcare Credit.
- If you are a grandparent or you have a grandparent who is under State Pension Age and they help look after your child while you work, then they can claim credits towards their own State Pension.
- This can ultimately increase their State Pension income in retirement.
- The credit should only be signed over from you if you no longer need the credit because you are working and the grandparent doesn’t quite have enough credits towards a full State Pension.
- Marriage Allowance
- Available to married couples and civil partners.
- If one partner has no income or earns less than the Personal Allowance (currently £11,500) then they can transfer up to 10% of their Personal Allowance to the higher earning tax payer.
- The higher earning tax payer must earn more than £11,500 and less than £45,000 (based on 2017/18 tax year).
- This could potentially mean a tax saving of up to £230 a year.
- You can back date claims to the 2015/16 tax year providing you qualified.
- Carers credit
- Not to be confused with Carers Allowance.
- If you’re caring for someone for more than 20 hours per week but less than 35 and your under State Pension Age, then you can claim National Insurance credits towards your State Pension.
- Caring for someone for more than 20 hours per week will usually mean you don’t have time to work and therefore qualify for National Insurance credits.
- If you care for someone for more than 35 hours per week then you will usually be entitled to Carers Allowance which automatically credits your State Pension entitlement.
If you would like to know if there are benefits and allowances you should be claiming then please contact me. I’d be happy to have a chat and see how we could increase your income.
Stock market linked investments and any income from them, can fall as well as rise and is not guaranteed. Any figures quoted are for illustrative purposes and should not be taken as a forecast or guarantee. Past performance should not be seen as an indication of future returns and clients may get back less than they have invested.