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Forum Home  →  Discussion  →  Income support, JSA and tax credits  →  Thread

main responsibility test

BC Welfare Rights
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The Brunswick Centre, Kirklees & Calderdale

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Joined: 22 July 2013

Are there any circumstances where a claimant might be said not to have main responsibility for the child when it is not disputed by another parent/guardian?  (Other than when claimant has no significant involvement with the child).

Mum and dad share residence of child pretty much 50-50 and state that they have agreed that dad gets paid the CTC. HMRC has raised an overpayment for dad back to May 2019 saying that it has decided that dad is not mainly responsible for the child. Mum insists she/partner have not also claimed. She may not be being truthful but I just wondered if there could be any other reason for this decision? None of the exclusions in CPAG p.289-90 apply.

HMRC letter states that it cannot deal with a MR request by phone.

Mark Willis
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Welfare rights worker - CPAG in Scotland

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Hi BC

As mentioned on p288 CPAG handbook, under the CTC Regs, Reg 3(1), Rule 1 is the “normally living with” test, Rule 2, the “main responsibility test” is only applied when two or more of persons make separate claims for the same child.

So if there have not been competing claims, only the “normally living with” test applies: HMRC guidance says this is “not defined in the regulations, therefore it should be given its ordinary every day meaning of regularly, usually, typically lives with them which allows for temporary or occasional absences.”

https://www.gov.uk/hmrc-internal-manuals/tax-credits-technical-manual/tctm02202
https://www.gov.uk/hmrc-internal-manuals/tax-credits-technical-manual/tctm02203

Mark

BC Welfare Rights
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The Brunswick Centre, Kirklees & Calderdale

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Total Posts: 1123

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Thanks Mark, I will try to get to the bottom of it. Incidentally, is the letter saying that MR’s can’t be resolved on the phone a coronavirus thing, or standard fare? It’s been a while since I’ve dealt with a Tax Credits appeal.

Mark Willis
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Welfare rights worker - CPAG in Scotland

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Total Posts: 100

Joined: 17 June 2010

Under s21A of the Tax Credits Act, the request for a review (mandatory reconsideration) does have to be in writing, and the outcome should always be notified in writing.

Mark