HMRC announces new way to claim Child Benefit allowing payments within days instead of weeks

HMRC announces new way to claim Child Benefit allowing payments within days instead of weeks

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Jessica Sheldon

By Jessica Sheldon

Published: 03/01/2024

- 10:55

Updated: 17/04/2024

- 12:57

Parents are being urged to make sure they aren’t missing out on a Child Benefit claim

HMRC has announced a new way in which parents can claim Child Benefit, and it could mean they get paid in as little as three days.

For the first time since it was launched 47 years ago, Child Benefit can be claimed online.

The online process, which takes around 10 minutes, offers an alternative option to filling out a paper form and sending it via post. Previously, parents could wait as long as 16 weeks for their first payment.

Parents and guardians can apply online via, with HMRC insisting it’s “quick and easy”.

Parent holding child and looking at laptop

Parents can now claim Child Benefit online, HMRC has announced


Nigel Huddleston, Financial Secretary to the Treasury, said: “Family time is precious, especially when you have a newborn baby, so it’s great news that HMRC is enabling parents to save time on claiming their Child Benefit online so they can focus on what truly matters.”

Suzanne Newton, HMRC’s Interim Director General for Transformation, said: “We know how much parents and guardians rely on Child Benefit to help with essential costs.

“We’ve made it far easier and quicker for families to claim this crucial help by making it digital.

“Parents and guardians can apply online when it suits them and be paid within days, not weeks.”

Applicants can search “Claim Child Benefit online” on to make a claim.

Parents or guardians can get Child Benefit if they are responsible for bringing up a child under the age of 16, or under 20 if they stay in approved education or training.

There isn’t a limit on the number of children parents can claim for, but only one person can claim Child Benefit for a child.

Natalie Smith, blogger at Frugal Mum, said: “No more paper forms for new parents - hurray!

“You can complete your application when it suits you online at GOV.UK and your Child Benefit can be backdated by up to three months – so don’t put it off.”

How much is Child Benefit?

The Child Benefit rate depends on who the allowance is for.

Currently, it’s worth £24 a week – equating to £1,248 a year – for the oldest or only child.

The rate for each additional child is £15.90 per week – almost £827 a year.

A Child Benefit claim can be backdated for up to 12 weeks.

HMRC is encouraging families to apply as soon as possible to ensure they don’t miss out on the support they are entitled to.

Parents or guardians with a child under the age of 12 can get National Insurance credits by claiming Child Benefit, which counts towards their state pension entitlement.

Parent holding child and looking at laptop

Child Benefit can be claimed from the day after a child's birth has been registered


They can claim Child Benefit from the day after a child’s birth has been registered.

When making the claim, applicants should have the following documents available:

  • The child’s birth certificate
  • Your bank details
  • Your National Insurance number
  • Your partner’s National insurance number (if you have a partner)

Families with adopted children, or whose child’s birth was registered outside the UK can claim Child Benefit online but need to send additional information through the post to support the application.

Parents with children over six months old who are yet to claim may be required to download and print their completed claim form and send it through the post.

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