Child Benefit - which changes you need to report

It's important to let the Child Benefit Office know of any changes in your circumstances as soon as possible. This will make sure you get the money you're entitled to without any delays, and also that you don't get overpaid and have to pay some back.

On this page:

How to report changes

You can report changes:

  • online - follow the link below
  • by calling the Child Benefit Helpline
  • by writing to the Child Benefit Office

Report changes online that may affect your Child Benefit

Contact details for Child Benefit

How to change your bank account details for Child Benefit payments

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Changes to do with you or your partner

Some changes in your circumstances can affect your entitlement to Child Benefit. You must tell the Child Benefit Office as soon as possible if any of the following changes happen.

Type of change

You must tell the Child Benefit Office straight away if:

Family changes

  • you marry, form a civil partnership, or start living with a partner, and you're both getting Child Benefit
  • you stop living with a partner and you're both getting Child Benefit
  • you have a baby
  • another child comes to live with you
  • you start getting paid by a local authority, or in Northern Ireland a Health and Social Services Board or Trust, for a child you're looking after

Bank account, name or address changes

  • you want to change the account your Child Benefit is paid into
  • you've changed your name or address

Contributions you make for to a child change or stop

  • you stop paying money or making contributions for a child who doesn't live with you - or what you pay or contribute changes

Absence from the UK

  • you or your partner are due to leave the UK permanently, or you're likely to be away for more than 52 weeks
  • you are due to leave the UK temporarily for more than eight weeks, or more than twelve weeks because you or a member of your family is ill, or has died
  • you lose your right to reside in the UK
  • your immigration status is changed by the Home Office

Other changes

  • you or your partner start to pay social security contributions to, or get social security benefit from, a foreign country
  • you leave Great Britain to go to Northern Ireland permanently, or Northern Ireland to go to Great Britain permanently

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Changes to do with your child

Some changes in your child's circumstances can affect your entitlement to Child Benefit. You must tell the Child Benefit Office as soon as possible about any of the following changes.

Type of change You must tell the Child Benefit Office straight away if your child:

Changes in your child's education or training

  • leaves education or training and starts working 24 hours a week or more, and they get or expect payment
  • leaves education or training earlier than the date you told the Child Benefit Office
  • stays on in education or training after the date you told the Child Benefit Office they would leave
  • starts education that's been provided by an employer or as part of any other job or role that they have
  • reduces their education to 12 hours a week or less
  • starts a higher education course leading to a qualification like a degree
  • starts being educated at home and is 16 or over
  • starts training that's provided by their employer
  • starts a training course that's not approved

Your child's away from home for more than a week

  • has lived away from you for more than 56 days in any 16 week period
  • is expected to live away from you for more than 8 weeks
  • is expected to be in hospital or residential care for 12 weeks or more because they're ill or disabled, and you will not be regularly spending money on them

Your child is going abroad

  • is due to leave the UK permanently, or they're likely to be away for more than 52 weeks
  • is due to leave the UK temporarily for more than 12 weeks
  • is due to leave Great Britain to go to Northern Ireland permanently, or Northern Ireland to go to Great Britain permanently

Other changes

  • changes their name
  • starts receiving benefits in their own right
  • marries, forms a civil partnership or starts to live with a partner
  • is expected to be held in legal custody for more than eight weeks
  • goes missing
  • is looked after by a local authority (in Northern Ireland, a Health and Social Services Board or Trust), a voluntary organisation, or held in secure or non-secure accommodation

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If your child dies

You will need to let the Child Benefit Office know if your child dies. It will be a difficult time for you but you can usually get Child Benefit for up to eight weeks after the date your child died. This may help with extra costs you face at this time.

Child Benefit if your child dies

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If you or your partner have an individual income of more than £50,000

You or your partner could be liable to a tax charge called the 'High Income Child Benefit charge'. Changes to the number of children either of you are entitled to receive Child Benefit for could affect your tax.

Instead of paying the tax charge, you or your partner could have decided not to receive Child Benefit payments. But you must still tell the Child Benefit Office if any of the changes mentioned above happen.

High Income Child Benefit charge

Changes in your income - or your partner's income

Your individual income, or your partner's, could go up or down. This could affect whether you're still liable to the High Income Child Benefit charge, or how much you have to pay.

For example, if your income dropped below £50,000 for a whole tax year, you'd no longer be liable to the charge. A tax year runs from 6 April to 5 April the following year. If you had previously decided not to receive Child Benefit payments, you would be able to ask to restart them.

To find out how you could be affected and what you need to do follow the link below.

High Income Child Benefit charge: changes in your income

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More useful links

Find out how changes can affect your Child Benefit payments

Child Benefit if your child is in further education or training

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