Your Child Benefit can often be extended for up to 20 weeks if your child is 16 or 17 and has left education or training. They need to have registered for work, education or training with a 'qualifying body'. To get the extension you'll need to apply for it.
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If your child is aged 16 or 17, and has left education or training that counted for Child Benefit, you may be able to get these extra weeks. To qualify, your child needs to be registered with any of the following - known as 'qualifying bodies':
You need to have been entitled to Child Benefit for your child immediately before the start of the extension period.
You won’t qualify for the extension if 20 weeks have already passed since your child left education or training that counted for Child Benefit.
EEA countries are Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and the UK.
You can apply for an extension in one of the following ways:
You need to apply within three months of the date your child finishes education or training that counted for Child Benefit.
The extension normally lasts up to 20 weeks and starts on the first Monday after your child stops education or training that counted for Child Benefit.
The extension will end if your child does any of the following:
You will need to report any of these changes to the Child Benefit Office.
The Child Benefit Office may have already stopped your Child Benefit because your child:
Your child may then have changed their mind and decided they want to stop working or come off benefits. If this happened before the end of the 20 week extension period let the Child Benefit Office know. This is because you may be able to reclaim Child Benefit for them up to the end of the extension period. But you must have applied for the extension within three months of your child leaving education or training that counted for Child Benefit.
You can contact the Child Benefit office online by following the link below. Alternatively, you can call the Child Benefit Helpline.
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. If either of you get an extension of your Child Benefit, the charge will be payable for the extra weeks.
Instead of paying the tax charge, you or your partner could have decided not to receive Child Benefit payments. You can still apply for an extension of your Child Benefit entitlement - even if you've chosen not to get the payments.
You must report any changes to your child's circumstances as soon as possible. If you don't, your Child Benefit payments may stop or you may be overpaid. You can report changes in any of the following ways:
If your child is 19 and goes back into education or training that counts for Child Benefit, you can make another claim for Child Benefit. Your child needs to have started, enrolled or been accepted for education or training that counts for Child Benefit before their 19th birthday.