Tax Credits – Renewal time!

Most people should have received their Tax Credit renewal packs by now, but if you haven’t, don’t panic. HMRC are still issuing these and should be with you no later than 30 June 2019. You should only contact tax credits if you have not received your renewal pack by this date.

The deadline for renewing your tax credits is 31 July 2019. However it is advisable to renew as soon as you get your renewal pack. The sooner HMRC can re-calculate your award, the sooner you get the correct payments.

If you do not renew on time, your payments will stop and you may have to repay any money received from April 2018 to date. Even if you don’t have your actual income figures for the 2018/19 tax year you must provide estimated figures and then advise HMRC of your actual income by 31 January 2020.

Some people will receive a renewal pack that says ‘Check now’. If this is the case you will only need to check your information is correct on the form and contact HMRC only if you need to report a change or if there is a mistake on your award.

However, if your annual review says ‘Reply now’, you must reply to HMRC. This applies even if you are not making a claim for the incoming year as you need to ensure you have been paid the right amount for the previous year. You can reply to HMRC in one of three ways;

Annual Declaration form – You can complete the form enclosed in your pack and return to HMRC in the enclosed envelope.

Telephone – You can telephone HMRC to renew your award, however the closer you get to the deadline, the busier the telephone lines will be. You may have to wait some time to speak to an advisor.

Online – You can log into your online account, file your annual declaration on line and make any changes necessary. It is quick and easy to do. If you do not have an online account, you can set one up.

Once you file your return with HMRC, within the next 8 weeks you will receive a ‘final award’ notice for 2018/19 together with a revised ‘provisional award’ notice for 2019/20. It is important to check that your 2018/19 final award notice is correct as if there are any errors at all, you only have 30 days from the date of issue to notify HMRC.

You must also notify HMRC if there is a change in your circumstances, which may affect your tax credits. You should contact the Tax Credit Office as soon as possible, otherwise you may find you owe them money.

Kim Paskin