How to check if you’ve been paid £500 working tax credit Covid grant
HARD up Brits claiming working tax credits are entitled to an extra payment worth £500 to get them through the Covid crisis.
The payout is supposed to reflect the six month extension to the £20 a week uplift in Universal Credit payments for those on the legacy benefit.
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HMRC said that payments will be made in April to those who are eligible for the added support.
We explain how to check if you've been paid and what to do if you've still not received it.
When will I be paid?
HMRC aimed to pay everyone who is eligible for the payout by April 23, which was last Friday.
That means you should have already received the payment.
The payments were made directly to the same bank account that you normally get your tax credits paid into.
What to do if you have problems claiming Universal Credit
IF you’re experiencing trouble applying for your Universal Credit, or the payments just don’t cover costs, here are your options:
- Apply for an advance – Claimants are able to get some cash within five days rather than waiting weeks for their first payment. But it's a loan which means the repayments will be automatically deducted from your future Universal Credit payout.
- Alternative Payment Arrangements – If you're falling behind on rent, you or your landlord may be able to apply for an APA which will get your payment sent directly to your landlord. You might also be able to change your payments to get them more frequently, or you can split the payments if you're part of a couple.
- Budgeting Advance – You may be able to get help from the Government for emergency household costs of up to £348 if you're single, £464 if you're part of a couple or £812 if you have children. These are only in cases like your cooker breaking down or for help getting a job. You'll have to repay the advance through your regular Universal Credit payments. You'll still have to repay the loan, even if you stop claiming for Universal Credit.
- Cut your Council Tax – You might be able to get a discount on your Council Tax by applying for a Council Tax Reduction. Alternatively, you might be entitled to Discretionary Housing Payments to help cover your rent.
- Foodbanks – If you're really hard up and struggling to buy food and toiletries, you can find your local foodbank who will provide you with help for free. You can find your nearest one on the Trussell Trust website.
The payment won't show up on the online tax credit service, but will appear on your bank statement as "HMRC C19 support".
There was no need to apply for the cash as payments were made automatically.
Those eligible should have received a text or letter from HMRC to confirm that you were in line to receive the boost.
If you haven't received the one-off payment and believe you should have been, you will need to contact the tax credits helpline on 0345 300 3900.
Who is eligible for the one-off payment?
To be eligible for the £500 payment, you must have already been claiming working tax credits on March 2.
Those who get child tax credit payments and are eligible for working tax credit but do not get payments because their income is too high will also be able to get the payment.
You should have received the £500 payment this time around due to the way the working tax credits system works.
It matches the extra weekly £20 boost that Universal Credit claimants will get for another six months.
In the previous 12 months, the basic element of working tax credit was hiked by the same weekly sum.
However, this increase was axed from April 6 as the new tax year started, and was replaced by the separate one-off payment.
How to claim working tax credit
You can't apply for working tax credit any more as it has been replaced by the Universal Credit system.
Lots of people have been automatically switched from tax credits to the newer Universal Credit system due to a change in circumstances.
But there are also plenty of people who are still on the old-style system, and the final deadline for being moved across has been pushed back to 2024.
Anyone who hasn't yet been transferred across will be eligible for the one-off £500 payment.
For those on the Universal Credit scheme, Rishi Sunak said the £20 a week boost could remain in place "well beyond" the end of the current national lockdown in England.
You may be eligible for Universal Credit if:
- you’re on a low income or out of work
- you’re 18 or over (there are some exceptions if you’re 16 to 17)
- you’re under State Pension age (or your partner is)
- you and your partner have £16,000 or less in savings between you
- you live in the UK
MoneySavingExpert has issued a warning about a Universal Credit bank holiday payment trap.
Plus, face-to-face meetings at Jobcentres have now restarted for Universal Credit and other benefit claimants.
The DWP started rolling out video calls to help assessments for those who are disabled or suffering health conditions.
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