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Forum Home  →  Discussion  →  COVID-19: Welfare benefit rules and entitlements  →  Thread

Reclaiming Tax Credits

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AlexJ
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I was reading this Rightsnet article today https://www.rightsnet.org.uk/welfare-rights/news/item/dwp-warns-people-that-applying-for-universal-credit-will-bring-any-tax-credit-claim-to-an-end-even-if-they-are-not-eligible-for-universal-credit, and it reminded me of a previous discussion that hadn’t really been resolved about whether or not someone can in fact make a fresh claim for tax credits, if they have had an award for CTC or WTC in the previous tax year.

If you look at the WRA 2012 (Commencement No. 23 and Transitional and Transitory Provisions) Order 2015, at paragraph 6 it says that you can make a fresh claim for tax credits if you received tax credits in the previous tax year. The intention is almost certainly to allow people to do a tax credits renewal, what with each tax year technically requiring a fresh claim for tax credits, but reading the provision literally (which is all we really have), it seems to me that you could argue it allows anyone to make a fresh claim for tax credits, provided that they received tax credits in the previous tax year.

So this warning from the DWP that you can’t ever reclaim tax credits after you’ve claimed UC, even if you’re not entitled to UC, is possibly wrong. What do people think?

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2015/634/article/7

Charles
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We have a few such cases under appeal at the moment, and we finally had our first hearing on Monday, which we won. We’re waiting to see how HMRC respond to this.

AlexJ
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That’s very interesting to know Charles, please do keep us updated on any developments.

Keith S Adviser
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Interesting thread, on the point of re-claiming, how is that being achieved at the moment. I ask as there is a dead end link on the HMRC website and a suggestion that you call the TC claim line number, are the forms still available, if so how can you obtain these ?

Paus17
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Charles - 29 April 2020 02:03 PM

We have a few such cases under appeal at the moment, and we finally had our first hearing on Monday, which we won. We’re waiting to see how HMRC respond to this.

Would it be possible for us to have the HMCTS reference so that we can cite it to HMRC and the tribunal?

Charles
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Keith S Adviser - 30 April 2020 12:20 PM

Interesting thread, on the point of re-claiming, how is that being achieved at the moment. I ask as there is a dead end link on the HMRC website and a suggestion that you call the TC claim line number, are the forms still available, if so how can you obtain these ?

It’s not really being achieved. Paper forms are no longer available. Even those HMRC accept are eligible to claim tax credits (SDP cases) have to claim by phone.
What we’ve done is attempt to claim by phone, been refused and followed that up with a letter asking them to reconsider the refusal. When HMRC reply saying again that a claim cannot be made, we’ve appealed, using the HMRC reply as evidence of a decision and a reconsideration having been made.

Paus17 - 30 April 2020 04:22 PM
Charles - 29 April 2020 02:03 PM

We have a few such cases under appeal at the moment, and we finally had our first hearing on Monday, which we won. We’re waiting to see how HMRC respond to this.

Would it be possible for us to have the HMCTS reference so that we can cite it to HMRC and the tribunal?

I will message you.

JojoMitchell
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Please can you send me the details too - had an email from a disabled mother who has just lost her WTC (made a claim on the advice in March from the Government to claim).  Has over £16K from inheritance so not eligible for UC. 
Thanks
Jo

Gareth Morgan
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Interesting tweet from HMRC today

Adnan Yaqoob @AdnanYa79317808
15m
Replying to @HMRCcustomers
I was haing child tax credit and working tax credit before covid 19. But couple of months ago it stops coz i applied dor UC and canceled afterwards

HMRC Customer Support
@HMRCcustomers
Replying to @AdnanYa79317808
Claiming Universal Credit stops the Tax Credits permanently, If the UC claim was a mistake, UC may be able to re-instate the Tax Credits, but it won’t happen automatically. Steve

5:54pm · 11 May 2020 ·

SarahBatty
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Wish I could send this to the people I was helping in my previous job where UC had been claimed ‘by mistake’ where HMRC and DWP refused to reinstate Tax Credits!

JojoMitchell
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We have a few such cases under appeal at the moment, and we finally had our first hearing on Monday, which we won. We’re waiting to see how HMRC respond to this.

What Regs did you use Charles?

Charles
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Art 6 of the ECHR to allow the appeal to be heard on a refusal by HMRC to decide a claim (see also here at para 24 et al. on a similar refusal, albeit by DWP, to decide a request for a supersession - hat-tip Peter Barker).
Then Art 7(6) of the No 23 Commencement Order and Art 3(5)(c) of the No 32 Commencement Order for the substantive issue.

JojoMitchell
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Thank you so much Charles!

Charles
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I should add for completeness that for a small area in Sutton, it is Art 6(5) of the No. 21 Commencement Order which is relevant.

JojoMitchell
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Thank you Charles!

JojoMitchell
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We’re getting more and more calls from disabled families where both WTC & CTC have stopped due to claiming UC based on pre-April COVID guidance.  Tax credits are telling claimants that they can’t do anything without a Stop Notice from UC and the UC helpline are telling people to reclaim tax credits!  Families have had no income for over a month relying on food banks.

Daphne - any updates from UC regarding this?

Thanks
Jo

Clara
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Hi I have a case like this, a family where the only earner is self employed with no work and they claimed UC on 26 March straight after the Chancellor’s announcement then withdrew the claim less than 48 hours later when they realised tax credits would stop.  They have had no income for 8 weeks.

Their MR request was treated as a complaint by HMRC and has been sent to the adjudicator.  I have suggested that they try to lodge the appeal with their request letter and the response they received that isn’t a decision notice but a complaint response.

Should they also try to make a new claim again? they tried once and were told it wasn’t possible.

Should they also reclaim UC so they have some income while they wait for a tax credits outcome which I assume may be some time.

Any suggestions very welcome, 2 young children in the household and a mortgage.

JAS1
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Just got my first case of this. Client is set to lose hundreds in tax credits. Applied for UC but is over savings limit due to owning another home. Wish they had told me they were going to apply, I offered a benefit check but they just applied instead :(

Will be keeping a close eye on this thread to see if there is any possibility she can get them back.

I feel the warning on the UC claim screen needs to be more prominent or something as the client didn’t see it at all.

Ianb
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JAS1 - 26 May 2020 03:16 PM

I feel the warning on the UC claim screen needs to be more prominent or something as the client didn’t see it at all.

That warning has only recently been added - previously there was none.

JAS1
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I did wonder about that as I saw a DWP tweet about the situation. Any idea when it was added? Dunno if it even matters but would be good to know.

So is the approach to do an MR to HMRC? Or reapply?

Ianb
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JAS1 - 27 May 2020 03:14 PM

I did wonder about that as I saw a DWP tweet about the situation. Any idea when it was added? Dunno if it even matters but would be good to know.

So is the approach to do an MR to HMRC? Or reapply?

I think it was around 5th May when the SoS said she was looking at what could be done https://www.rightsnet.org.uk/welfare-rights/news/item/secretary-of-state-is-actively-looking-at-what-can-be-done-for-tax-credit-claimants-who-have-lost-entitlement-due-to-applying-for-universal-credit

Charles
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JAS1 - 27 May 2020 03:14 PM

So is the approach to do an MR to HMRC? Or reapply?

The loophole being discussed in this thread is to make a fresh claim. For more details, see post #5 above.

JAS1
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Thanks Charles, have re-read post 5, very helpful.

JoW
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I think it was around 5th May when the SoS said she was looking at what could be done https://www.rightsnet.org.uk/welfare-rights/news/item/secretary-of-state-is-actively-looking-at-what-can-be-done-for-tax-credit-claimants-who-have-lost-entitlement-due-to-applying-for-universal-credit[/quote]


Anyone know if there has been any update from SoS as per above?

JAS1
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I was planning on doing what Charles suggested and writing to tax credits to ask for a reconsideration on the refusal of the new claim.

However I finally heard back from the client and (mostly due to the financial stress caused by this issue) the couple have now separated and the client is now a single parent.

Is there any point continuing this route now?

Charles
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I’ve considered this in the past. I think it does make it more difficult (perhaps more so with the No 23 Order than the No 32 Order), but I suppose you could still try it.

JAS1
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Thanks Charles, why not eh. Nothing to lose. I’ve sent off the MR letter to HMRC.

Daphne
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Written answer yesterday which gives no information at all about what DWP might do in relation to people who mistakenly claimed UC during COVID crisis!

Paul_Treloar_AgeUK
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Daphne - 08 July 2020 12:20 PM

Written answer yesterday which gives no information at all about what DWP might do in relation to people who mistakenly claimed UC during COVID crisis!

Quince speaks with forked tongue.

This includes launching a new microsite within the “Understanding Universal Credit” website to help people understand the eligibility criteria of different support schemes and benefits and the interaction between the different support offers. Since this new content was launched in early March, it has received over 1.8 million page views.

We launched a microsite that palpably failed to warn anyone what might happen to legacy benefits if they claimed UC and it’s been viewed almost two million times.

The Department continually makes improvements to the UC service in response to feedback and user research. Therefore, on 3 June we introduced a check-through box to remind claimants to check their eligibility before making a claim and to remind them that legacy benefits will cease when the UC claim is submitted and that they will not be able to return to them in the future, even if the claimant is not entitled to UC.

Three months later we finally decided it might be a good idea to tell people what might happen if they claim UC, even if they’re not entitled to any money. Better late then never, what ho!!

DWP cannot advise individual claimants whether they would be better off moving to UC or remaining on legacy benefits.

My department, the DWP, are incapable of advising individuals about their possible benefit entitlements, despite our function being to pay people these wonderful new simple benefits you’ve all heard about. It’s not our fault if people lost out and we don’t intend to do anything about it.

JAS1
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Reacting quickly by adding a check box on the 3rd of June eh.

I hope there is some practical solution to this the amount of money people have lost is substantial.

Have you had any further developments with HMRC Charles?

Charles
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JAS1 - 08 July 2020 01:45 PM

Have you had any further developments with HMRC Charles?

Apparently, HMRC have requested a statement of reasons, although they appear to have done so slightly late.

We have another case which should be listed for a hearing within a couple of weeks or so, and another three in the pipeline.

JAS1
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Thanks for the update, fingers crossed for a positive outcome.