What is Child Benefit?

Child Benefit is a payment that you can claim for your child. It is usually paid every four weeks but can sometimes be paid weekly. There are separate rates payable for each child. The payment can be claimed by anyone who qualifies, whatever their income or savings.

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Who can get Child Benefit?

If you're responsible for a child, you can normally get Child Benefit for them - even if you're not their parent.

You can get Child Benefit even if your child doesn't live with you, as long as:

  • you pay towards their upkeep
  • what you pay is at least the same as the amount of Child Benefit
  • the person your child lives with is not getting Child Benefit for them

If you and another person both claim Child Benefit for the same child, only one of you can get it.

Child Benefit payments usually stop when your child reaches 16, unless they are in education or training that counts for Child Benefit. For example, an advanced course at higher education level - such as a degree - doesn't count.

You can't get Child Benefit for your child once they reach the age of 20.

Find out if you qualify for Child Benefit

Child Benefit once your child is 16 or over

Find out what types of education or training count for Child Benefit

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How much Child Benefit will you get?

There are two separate amounts, with a higher amount for your eldest (or only) child. You get £20.50 a week for your eldest child and £13.55 a week for each of your other children.

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How is Child Benefit paid?

Child Benefit can be paid into any bank, building society, or National Savings & Investments (NS&I) account that accepts Direct Payment. It's usually paid every four weeks, but it can be paid weekly if you're getting Income Support, income-based Jobseeker's Allowance, income-related Employment and Support Allowance, Pension Credit or if you're a single parent.

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More useful links

How to claim Child Benefit

Child Benefit for under 18s who leave education or training

Find out about Guardian's Allowance

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