Money Box: Expert gives advice on child benefit charges
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Martin Lewis has shared an important benefit that many Britons could take advantage of and claim thousands from the Government. He explained that grandparents who apply for Specified Adult Childcare Credit can add thousands to their state pension.
On his Twitter account, the money-saving expert shared a little-known benefit that could help grandparents that look after their grandchildren.
As the cost of living crisis continues, those approaching retirement may be looking for ways to boost their pension pots so this could be the answer.
Mr Lewis tweeted: “Please share. There’s a little-known benefit for grandparents who look after their grandchildren while parents work.
“If you’re a parent of an under 12, if your parent (i.e. child’s grandparent) does childcare so you can work, you can apply to get them ‘Specified Adult Childcare Credit’.
“This means they get the National Insurance years that normally go to a parent who is off work looking after children (as you’re working you’ll usually be getting from work).
“This can add £1,000s to a state pension.”
For more information, he advised people to visit the Government website.
In order to qualify for the benefit, an individual and the relative must meet specific criteria.
The relative must:
- Have not already reached state retirement age;
- Looks after a child or children under the age of 12 while the child or children’s parent or main carer is working (see below regarding socially distanced care);
- Does not already have a qualifying year in their own right through their own contributions or NIC credits;
- Is ordinarily resident in the UK.
The parent (or carer) does not need the NIC credits from their child benefit claim for their own NIC record.
Both the relative and the parent (or carer) make a joint claim at the relevant time.
Britons may be entitled to receive these NI credits if they are a grandparent, or other family member, who cares for a child under 12, usually whilst their parent (or main carer) is working.
Specified Adult Childcare credits work by transferring the NI credit attached to Child Benefit from the Child Benefit recipient to a family member who is providing care for a related child under 12.
Therefore, if no one has claimed Child Benefit for the child there is no attached NI credit to transfer and Specified Adult Care credits cannot be awarded.
The recipient will receive a Class 3 NI credit for each week or part week they cared for the child.
These help to build entitlement to the state pension and, until April 2017, certain bereavement benefits.
They can also help to stop gaps in one’s National Insurance record.
To apply for Specified Adult Childcare credits, people will need to complete an application form.
The application requires the:
- personal details of the applicant – the family member caring for the child
- child’s details and the periods of care
- personal details of the child’s parent (or main carer) – the Child Benefit recipient
- applicant and the parent must both sign their declarations on the application.
Specified Adult Childcare credits can be awarded retrospectively, to April 6, 2011 at the earliest.
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