More Coronavirus tax support options

Apart from the main business and personal tax reliefs that have received publicity in the past few weeks, a number of supplementary support items have been introduced. We have highlighted two in this post.

 

Claiming Child Benefits for new-borns

General Register Offices are currently operating with reduced capacity and with government guidance to social distance and stay at home, new parents are advised not to visit them. However, they can still claim Child Benefit without having to register their child’s birth first to ensure that they do not miss out.

HMRC said:

“First time parents will need to fill in Child Benefit Claim form CH2 found online and send it to the Child Benefit Office. If they haven’t registered the birth because of COVID-19, they should add a note with their claim to let us know.”

If you already claim Child Benefit, you can complete the form or add your baby’s details over the phone on 0300 200 3100. You will need your National Insurance number or Child Benefit number.

Note, Child Benefit claims can be backdated by up to 3 months.

Child Benefit payments increased from 6 April to a weekly rate of £21.05 for the first child and £13.95 for each additional child. Child Benefit is paid into a parent’s bank account, usually every 4 weeks.

Only one person can claim Child Benefit for a child. For couples with one partner not working or paying National Insurance contributions (NICs), making the claim in their name will help protect their State Pension.

 

New HMRC tax helpline is now open for calls

Business owners and self-employed individuals who are struggling to pay their tax can now ring a new helpline. The service allows any business or self-employed individual who is concerned about paying their tax due to coronavirus to get practical help and advice. Up to 2,000 experienced call handlers are available to support businesses and individuals when needed.

 

For those who are unable to pay due to coronavirus, HMRC will discuss your specific circumstances to explore:

  • agreeing an instalment arrangement
  • suspending debt collection proceedings
  • cancelling penalties and interest where you have administrative difficulties contacting or paying HMRC immediately

The helpline number is 0800 024 1222 – and is an addition to other HMRC phone contact numbers. Opening hours are Monday to Friday 8am to 4pm. The helpline will not be available on Bank Holidays.

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