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The Government is making some changes to payments for housing costs and child tax credits from April 2017. Here’s a bit more information.

Housing costs for 18 to 21-year-olds

If you’re aged between 18 and 21 years old and intending to make your first claim for housing costs under Universal Credit, you should know that you won’t be entitled to this money from April 2017. This won’t affect you if you’re already being paid housing costs – either through Universal Credit or housing benefits – it’s just for new claimants only.

There are a few exceptions, however. You can still claim if:

  • You have a dependent child
  • You’re in receipt of Disability Living Allowance (DLA) or Personal Independence Payments (PIP) at a standard, middle, enhanced or high rate.
  • You are under threat of domestic violence
  • You have recently left care

Child tax credits

Claimants will not receive additional tax credits for their third – or subsequent – child if he/she is born after April 2017 (this won’t affect payments for children born before that date or affect child benefit). Again, there are exemptions to this. It won’t apply if:

  • It’s a multiple birth (for example, twins or triplets)
  • The child is born as a result of domestic abuse or sexual violence

There are other exceptions to both these changes; we have just listed the key ones above. If you’d like to find out more, please call our Welfare Benefits and Advice team on 0203 828 4085.