When Britons on Tax Credits can expect second cost of living payment

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To help with spiralling living costs, the Government announced a cost of living payment scheme as part of an estimated £15.3billion support package. The scheme has been offered to those claiming certain benefits or the state pension, and payment amounts – as well as months of distribution – have varied.

The main cost of living payment, worth £650, was to be paid in two lump sums of £326 and £324, for eligible households receiving certain benefits.

Eligible recipients have been receiving instalments since the support scheme launched in July, but the payment date has depended on the type of benefit a person is in receipt of.

And now, the HMRC has now announced when eligible Tax Credit-only claimants will receive their second half, worth £324.

Every Tax Credit customer will receive a letter between November 14 and November 18, 2022, explaining the second cost of living payment; what makes an individual eligible, when it could arrive, and who it will be distributed by.

If claimants are eligible and receive Tax Credits – and no other qualifying benefits – they will receive their second payment from HMRC.

While those who receive Tax Credits as well as other qualifying benefits, they’ll receive their payment from the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP).

Regarding dates eligible Tax Credit-only individuals will receive their second payment, HMRC has said it should arrive between November 23 and November 30, 2022.

However, HMRC noted: “Receiving a letter doesn’t guarantee that a customer is eligible for the payment, but provides information to help customers understand the payment.”

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To be eligible for the second cost of living payment as a Tax Credit recipient, an individual must have received one of the following, for any day in the period between August 26, 2022, to September 25, 2022:

  • Payment of Tax Credits for the tax year 2022 to 2023
  • An annual award of at least £26 of Tax Credits for the tax year 2022 to 2023

HMRC will make the second cost of living payment automatically into the same bank account where claimants receive their Tax Credits. It will appear on the bank statement as “HMRC COLS”.

For joint claimants – where one claimant receives Working Tax Credit and the other claimant receives Child Tax Credit – payments will be made into the same bank account as the Child Tax Credit. 

Those who are eligible do not need to do anything to receive this payment. This includes contacting the HMRC or applying for payment. 

If eligible claimants don’t receive a payment within the allocated window between November 23 to 30, HMRC asks to wait until December 7 before contacting.

This will allow time for a claimant’s bank, building society, or credit union to process the payment.

The letters also remind Britons to be aware of scams. Research by Citizens Advice has revealed over 40 million people in the UK have been targeted by scammers using various cost of living scam tactics so far.

From fraudulent emails claiming to be from Ofgem asking for bank details to receive the £400 energy rebate, to texts claiming to be from the DWP asking people to apply for cost of living payments, Britons are being hit with an influx in what some might seem as more realistic scams as the months go on.

HMRC guidance reiterated: “You don’t need to apply for this payment – if you’re eligible, you will be paid automatically.

“If someone contacts you about Cost of Living payments saying they’re from HMRC, it might be a scam.

“We’ll never ask for your bank details by SMS or email. Don’t let yourself be rushed.”

For advice on spotting scams, people can visit the Government website.

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