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Tax Credits

vic21 Member Posts: 1 Listener
I am in need of a bit of advice. My partner moved out on the 24th may this year. Initially it was only a short term thing he was struggling and needed a break. Hence I did nothing about our joint tax credits claim. I did this on the 19th of July why it became clear that this was going to be a more permanent thing. They stopped the joint claim from the 24th and only back dated the new claim for myself for one month. This has left me having to pay back an over payment which is ok for the month they have back dated but it also means for the over 3 weeks before that I have to pay the money back yet I haven't received any tax credits. This doesn't seem right to me can I appeal this decision? Or is there nothing I can do. Thank you in advance for any advice. 


  • steve51
    steve51 Member Posts: 7,154 Disability Gamechanger
    Hl @vic21
    A very big welcome to our online community I do hope that we can offer you some help\advise ?????
    We have got a Benefit Adviser on our home page which is a good starting point.
    There is also a lot off info on Benefits there as well.
    Please please let us know if we can help\support you further with this ????
  • Liam_Alumni
    Liam_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 1,105 Pioneering
    Hi @Vic21,

    Welcome to Scope's online community! It's great to have you on board.

    I've moved this post into our Ask a Benefits Advisor category. @BenefitsTrainingCo, can you help?
  • BenefitsTrainingCo
    BenefitsTrainingCo Member Posts: 2,628 Pioneering

    A tax credit claim can only be backdated for one month maximum, so there is nothing you can do about the single person claim. The only thing you could do is to try to argue that they should not have stopped the couple claim from 24th May, but from a later date when it became clear your partner wasn't going to return. That way, you could argue you weren't being overpaid until quite a bit later (if possible, argue no overpayment occurred until the period covered by the backdated single person claim). Whether you can still be counted as a couple until later will depend on lots of factors, such as whether you were both still responsible for bills in the home, where he kept his things, and where his post was sent.

    I would ask for a mandatory reconsideration of the overpayment decision arguing you were still a couple and as far as you knew still cohabiting (for example if you can show your partner hadn't found another permanent home in this time & you expected it to be temporary). If you are married, you have a much stronger argument that you continue to be a couple until you know the separation is permanent. I am assuming from your question that this may not be the case - but  don't let it put you off if you weren't married, it's still worth a try.

    If that isn't successful you can appeal. During the process of challenging the overpayment, you don't have to pay it back.

    If that doesn't work and it is decided that you definitely were overpaid, you can still ask HMRC not to recover the overpayment based on their discretion. That means arguing that you did everything you could be expected to do - it can be hard to get them to stop recovery on this basis, but it is worth a try. If you are going to do this, try to do it within 3 months of the unsuccessful mandatory reconsideration or appeal (depending on how far you take it).


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